HSE new committee on workplace health excludes additional risks to children exposed to asbestos in schools

HSE web site: “HSE has appointed a new committee to provide independent expert knowledge and advice on workplace health… The workplace health expert committee (WHEC) will be made up of nine members who will provide expert opinion on emerging issues and trends, new evidence relating to existing issues and, on the quality and relevance of the evidence base on workplace health issues… In particular, the WHEC will focus on chemical and physical hazards.

Comment This committee effectively takes the place of the disbanded Advisory Committee on Toxic Substances (ACTS). Their remit does not appear to cover children in school as they are not considered by HSE to be ‘workers’ in a ‘workplace’. It is of concern that the additional risks to children in school from asbestos, rather than their adult teachers who are at a lower risk, do not appear to be in their remit.