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pr40-2011-asbestos.doc - National Union of Teachers

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Monday 18 April 2001

NUT HIGHLIGHTS ASBESTOS FAILURE IN SCHOOLS

A nationwide survey of more than 600 school safety representatives, conducted by the
NUT and 8 other unions with members in schools, has uncovered worrying
shortcomings in asbestos management.

The Joint Union Asbestos Campaign (JUAC) survey revealed that almost 70 per cent
of safety representatives were not consulted about asbestos management in their
school. Consulting safety representatives on matters to do with health and safety in
the workplace is a requirement under health and safety law, as well as being good
management practice.

Only 28% of respondents stated that asbestos in their school was clearly marked, with
nearly 40% saying it definitely wasn’t, and the remainder not knowing.

Only 20% of respondents said that school staff had had any asbestos awareness
training.

The findings of this joint union survey contradict the Health and Safety Executive’s
2009 survey which sought to assess how well local authorities were managing
asbestos in system-built schools, and which painted a generally positive picture.

Commenting on these findings, Christine Blower, General Secretary of the
National Union of Teachers, the largest teachers’ union, said;

“Lack of consultation with safety reps and lack of training for staff are two major
areas of concern. There is no room for complacency. We are ready to work with
schools and local authorities in any way we can to improve standards of asbestos
management in schools.”

                                      END                               pr40-2011
For further details contact Caroline Cowie on 07879480061 or 0207 380 4706

				
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