The Labour Party, led by Jeremy Corbyn, has introduced a new policy to aid workers in tough temperatures.
After first implying that such a plan could be on the cards in 2015, Corbyn today revealed the party’s intentions to make working in temperatures over 30 degrees illegal – if Labour were to win the next general election.
The ‘maximum workplace temperature’ rule – particularly poignant on what is expected to be the hottest day on record for the UK with temperatures set to hit 39 degrees – would protect professionals from working in dangerous conditions due to heat, and force bosses to introduce heat controls.
Labour sources touted top solutions including remote working and flexible working as possible solutions, as well as introducing air conditioning into office spaces. In the event that companies do not comply with the policy, they could not only face fines but also appeals from unions and Health and Safety Executives (HSE).
Whilst current legislation guards workers from lower temperatures – with current guidance advising that workspaces do not let working areas dip below 16 degrees – but does not safeguard workers against heat, despite a recommendation fro
Laura Pidcock MP, Labour’s Shadow Minister, told the Mirror: “As we’re all being reminded this week, working in hot conditions is really uncomfortable, often stressful and it makes us less productive and even ill. Plus, it’s often the lowest paid and most insecure workers who suffer the most.
“That’s why the next Labour government will demand that employers look after the needs of their workers during heatwaves like this. We believe everyone should have the right to basic protections from working in unbearably hot conditions.
“Climate change is already making our shops, offices, call-centres and other workplaces too hot, and it’s also threatening the safety and health of old people, babies and many others,” she added.
“That’s why Labour will ensure 60% of the UK’s energy comes from renewable sources by 2030. But in the meantime, we’ll also ensure no one has to endure high temperatures at work,” Pidcock concluded.