Policies and Health & Safety Procedures

The Occupational Health and Safety Act 1985 and associated regulations set out a legal framework for workplace health and safety procedures, and employers’ general duty of care

that we at Unique adhere to implicitly.


We at Unique aim to…

Apply the development of policies and procedures, and employers’ general duty of care

under the Occupational Health and Safety Act so as to…..

“… provide and maintain so far as is practicable for employees a working environment that is safe and without risks to health”


 “Practicable” involves doing what can be done in the light of:

a) The severity of the hazard or risk in question;

b) The state of knowledge about that hazard or risk and any methods of removing or mitigating that      hazard or risk;

c) The availability and suitability of ways to remove or mitigate that hazard or risk;

d) The cost of removing or mitigating that hazard or risk.

Providing and maintaining safe plant and systems of work;

General duty includes:

  • arranging safe systems of work when working with plant and substances;

  • providing a safe work environment;

  • providing adequate welfare facilities; 

  • providing adequate information on hazards,

  • as well as instruction, training and supervision to employees, to enable them to work safely and

  • Without risks to health.

We also employ the following procedure to;

  • Monitor the health of our employees.

  • keep information and records relating to the health and safety our employees;

  • employ or engage suitably qualified persons to provide advice on the health and safety of our employees  when required ;

  • nominate a person with an appropriate level of seniority to be the employer’s representative when health and safety issues arise

  • or when

  • health and safety representatives carry out their functions under the Act;

  • Monitor conditions at any workplace under our control and management.

  • Provide health and safety information to our employees, in appropriate languages, including the names of persons to whom an employee may make an inquiry or complaint in relation to health and safety.

  • Commitment to regular monitoring and review of the policy and its effectiveness.

  • senior management is commitment to the provision and maintenance of a working environment which is safe and without risks to health;

  • the integration of that commitment into all organisational activities;

  • a commitment to establishing the functions and roles of all people in the organisation involved in maintaining workplace health and safety;

  • accountability of all levels of management for implementing health and safety practices and procedures;

  • the importance of consultation and cooperation between management and employees for effective translation of objectives into action;

  • training in, and communication of, health and safety practices and procedures;


Safety Rules.

All of our safety rules must be adhered to at all times. Failure to do so will result in strict disciplinary action being taken.

  1. Keep your mind on your work at all times. No horseplay on the job. Injury or termination or both can be the result.

  2. Personal safety equipment must be worn as prescribed for each job, such as; safety glasses for eye protection, hard hats at all times within the confines of the construction site/area. Gloves when handling materials and safety boots for protection against foot injuries. High vis vests at all times.

  3. Suitable clothing to and for protection against sunburn or hot materials.

  4. Watch where you are walking

  5. Don’t run.

  6. The use of illegal drugs or alcohol or being under the influence of the same on the project shall be cause for termination.

  7. Inform your supervisor if taking strong prescription drugs that worn against driving or using machinery.

  8. Do not distract the attention of fellow workers. Do not engage in any act that would endanger another employee.

  9. Where sanitation facilities have been or will be provided for your use, defacing or damaging these Facilities is forbidden.

  10. Keep your work area clean and safe at all times.

  11. Do not work at heights if you are afraid to do so or are subject to dizzy spells, nervous or sick.

  12. Never move an injured person unless it is absolutely necessary, further injury may result. Keep them comfortable as possible. Alert /bring to the attention of others to assist in organising the appropriate response. 1staid or the emergency services.

  13. Know where the fire fighting equipment is and be trained on how to use them.  

  14. Lift correctly – with legs not the back. 

  15. Do not use power tools and equipment until you have been properly instructed in the safe work methods and become authorized to use them.

  16. Be sure all guards are in place, do not remove, displace or destroy any safety device or safeguard furnished or provided for use on the job, nor interfere with the use thereof.

  17. Do not enter an area that is barricaded or restrictive access or permit access is required unless authorized to do so and with an awareness of works currently on-going.

  18. Open fires are prohibited.

  19. Know what emergency procedures have been established. (Location of the emergency phone, first aid kit, fire extinguisher locations, gather points etc.


Four-step System

First Violation;                             Oral warning; notation for personal files.

Second Violation;                      Written warning; copy for file or personnel office.

Third Violation;                           Written warning; one day suspension without pay.

Forth Violation;                           Written warning and one-week suspension, or termination if                                                                           warranted.



Unique, aims to achieve worker safety and health through the following;

  1. Using qualified and trained personnel.

  2. Making regular job site safety inspections.

  3. Enforcing safety rules.

  4. Enforcing the use of safety equipment.

  5. Following safety procedures and rules.

  6. Providing on-going safety training.

  7. Method statements.

  8. Risk assessments.

  9. Tool box talks

  10. Inductions.



  1. After site inspection by our designated Site Safety Officer/Administrator or other competent designated person will identify and evaluate all potential hazards for;

         A: Injury severity potential.

         B: Probability of an accident.

  1. This person will also appraise the skill and knowledge level of exposed workers.


  1. Appropriate training will be given.

         A: Hazards will be pointed out.

         B: Necessary precautions will be explained.

         C. The higher the hazard the more detailed will be the training.

4.     Records will be maintained for all training sessions with descriptions of topics covered and 

         Names of workers trained.



 The designated representative will have the responsibility to provide all employees with operation procedures, hazards and safeguards of tools and equipment.

Weekly job meetings will be provided for any expanded orientation to such tools, hazards and safeguards as required.

 Our representative will make daily visual inspections if known hazardous materials are to be in use to insure that all unsafe or hazardous conditions are eliminated. Our representative will provide instructions to each employee regarding recognition and avoidance of hazards. Also all information in regards to safe handling, protective measures and first aid procedures to use in the event of an injury.

Through the use ofInductionsand tool boxtalks all known hazards, use of tools, equipment , materials, 1staid stations, fire stations, gather points, site restrictions, site rules and required PPE and any other  requirements or restrictions as is, will be fully explained through these talks and additional H&S information sheets. Which will be made available for further reading.


 Personal Protective Equipment

Foot Protection

Protective footwear shall be worn to protect from falling objects, chemicals or stepping on sharp objects. 

Head Protection

Protective Hard hats will be worn on job sites to protect from falling objects, hair entanglement etc.

Inspection of the hat will be a requirement on the start of each working day.

If your hat sustains a heavy blow or impact a new one will be issued.

An employee shall not physically alter a helmet.

Eye and Face Protection

Eye protection will be worn when there are potentials of hazards from flying objects or particles, chemical, arcing, glare or dust.

Hand Protection

Protective gloves will be worn when handling Sharpe or abrasive materials or chemical or dermatitis causing materials.

High Visual clothing 

As a rule any over coat, vest or jacket shall be of a type suitable for site work and must be of ‘High Vis’ either yellow or orange based with high reflective strips and must be worn at all times within the site boundary.


Power tools; 110v secondary transformed type or Battery operated tools.


  1. Removal of all rubbish and debris promptly and properly.

  2. Keep work areas and walkways clean and clear.

  3. Throw away cardboard boxes, paper wrappings and packing materials when you unpack.

  4. Wipe up spills straight away.

  5. Secure and stack materials to prevent them from falling or collapsing.


 Check lists


  • Ladder and steps, weekly inspections. Recorded 

  • Power tools Pat tested. Recorded.

  • Leads, Pat tested and visual inspection before each use.

  • All MSDS files to be on site and available for review to all employees.

  • Accident Book. On site

  • 1stAid kit. On site, Back up in all vehicles. 

  • First aid book, info.

  • H&S info sheets, workers’ rights, High five information pamphlets and all relevant information sheets with relevance to the job and materials used, methods of safe working.         

  • Relevant signage.   

  • All other records (Hot works, Confined spaces, reviews, inductions, tool-box talks, etc.) recorded.

Ladders and step ladders.

 British Standard (BS) Class 1 ‘Industrial’ or BS EN 131

Safety precautions.

  1. Is there an alternative, eg; Raised platform system.

  2. Harness and clip-on with fall arrester to be used.

  3. Never use metal steps or ladders for electrical work.

  4. Do not set ladders on boxes or other objects to increase the height.

  5. Block any doors that may open toward ladders or step ladders.

  6. Only allow 1 person per ladder or step ladder at a time.

  7. Do not use defective ladders or step ladders.

  8. Do follow safe usage procedures.

  9. Do use a ladder stay.

  10. Do use ladder feet/stay.

  11. Do secure ladders to the framework of the building with the possible need for an additional tie as height increases.

  12. Guard rail system and signs positioned at and around the base/area to guide and prevent members of the public, animals and other workers from accidental collisions and possible failing tools, materials and the work person.  

  13. Do not carry up right, seek assistance, 2 person to carry.


 Selecting the right ladder.


  • Choose one that is long enough, and

  • Provides enough support for the job you need to do


 Inspecting the ladder/steps


by the user;

  • at the beginning of the working day;

  •  After something has changed, eg a ladder has been dropped or moved from a

dirty area to a clean area (check the state or condition of the feet).

  • Check the stiles – make sure they are not bent or damaged, as the ladder could

buckle or collapse.

  • Check the feet – if they are missing, worn or damaged the ladder could slip. Also

  • Check ladder feet when moving from soft/dirty ground (eg dug soil, loose sand/

stone, a dirty workshop) to a smooth, solid surface (eg paving slabs), to make sure

the foot material and not the dirt (eg soil, chippings or embedded stones) is making

contact with the ground.

  • Check the rungs – if they are bent, worn, missing or loose the ladder could fail.

  • Check any locking mechanisms – if they are bent or the fixings are worn or

damaged the ladder could collapse. Ensure any locking bars are engaged.

  • Check the stepladder platform – if it is split or buckled the ladder could become

unstable or collapse.

  • Check the steps or treads on stepladders – if they are contaminated they could

be slippery; if the fixings are loose on steps, they could collapse.

Using the ladder

  • Make sure the ladder is on firm footing.

  • Limit usage time to no more than 15 minutes at any one time.

  • Face the ladder whilst climbing.

  • Use both hands and maintain 3 points of contact.

  • Never over reach when working from the ladder.

  • Do not carry tools in your hand when climbing.

  • don’t overload it – consider workers’ weight and the equipment or

materials they are carrying before working at height. Check the pictogram

or label on the ladder for information;

  • make sure the ladder angle is at 75° – you should use the 1 in 4 rule (ie 1

unit out for every 4 units up) 

  • always grip the ladder and face the ladder rungs while climbing or

descending – don’t slide down the stiles;

  •  don’t try to move or extend ladders while standing on the rungs;

  •  don’t work off the top three rungs, and try to make sure the ladder

extends at least 1 m (three rungs) above where you are working;

  • don’t stand ladders on moveable objects, such as pallets, bricks, lift

trucks, tower scaffolds, excavator buckets, vans, or mobile elevating work


  • avoid holding items when climbing (consider using a tool belt);

  • don’t work within 6 m horizontally of any overhead power line, unless it has

been made dead or it is protected with insulation. Use a non-conductive

ladder (eg fibreglass or timber) for any electrical work;

  •  maintain three points of contact when climbing (this means a hand and two

feet) and wherever possible at the work position – see Figures 2 and 3;

  •  where you cannot maintain a handhold, other than for a brief period (eg to

hold a nail while starting to knock it in, starting a screw etc), you will need

to take other measures to prevent a fall or reduce the consequences if one


  •  for a leaning ladder, you should secure it (eg by tying the ladder to prevent

it from slipping either outwards or sideways) and have a strong upper

resting point, ie do not rest a ladder against weak upper surfaces (eg

glazing or plastic gutters – see Figure 4);

  • you could also use an effective stability device.

Tips for climbing down.

  • Maintain 3 points of contact and face the ladder.

  • Place your foot firmly on the next rung before changing your handhold.

  • Do not rush, take your time.


  • When not using the ladder, store in a rack system to avoid damage.


When using a stepladder to carry out a task:

  • check all four stepladder feet are in contact with the ground and the

steps are level;

  • only carry light materials and tools;

  • don’t overreach;

  • don’t stand and work on the top three steps (including a step forming the

very top of the stepladder) unless there is a suitable handhold;

  • ensure any locking devices are engaged;

  • try to position the stepladder to face the work activity and not side on.

  • However, there are occasions when a risk assessment may show it is

safer to work side on, eg in a retail stock room when you can’t engage

the stepladder locks to work face on because of space restraints in

narrow aisles, but you can fully lock it to work side on;

  • try to avoid work that imposes a side loading, such as side-on drilling

through solid materials (eg bricks or concrete);

  • where side-on loadings cannot be avoided, you should prevent the steps

from tipping over, eg by tying the steps. Otherwise, use a more suitable

type of access equipment;

  • maintain three points of contact at the working position. This means two

feet and one hand, or when both hands need to be free for a brief

period, two feet and the body supported by the stepladder


When deciding if it is safe to carry out a particular task on a stepladder

where you cannot maintain a handhold (eg to put a box on a shelf, hang

wallpaper, install a smoke detector on a ceiling), this needs to be justified,

taking into account:


  • The height of the task;

  • whether a handhold is still available to steady yourself before and after

the task;

  • whether it is light work;

  • whether it avoids side loading;

  • whether it avoids overreaching;

  • whether the stepladder can be tied (eg when side-on working).

Overhead Dangers

Accidents involving people walking or working under crane booms and buckets are infrequent, but, when they do they are often fatal.

The rule is simple;  “Do not stand, walk or work under crane booms, buckets or suspended loads”.


Safety guidelines.

  • Is it safe to work on.

  • Is the Tag up to date.

  • Do not stock pile material on the scaffold. 

  • Remove all tools and materials at the end of the work period/day/shift.


 Handling and lifting.


When lifting an object think safety 1st.

  • Is it heavy, seek help/barrow/lifting equipment.

  • Is it large,  seek help/barrow/lifting equipment.

  • Is it at height, seek help/platform.

  • Check your intended route, is it clear.

  • Lift with your legs not your back.

  • Correct posture.

  • Keep the object close to your body.

  • Take small and controlled steps.

  • Keep a clear view; do not over stack and carry.

  • Bend from the legs when unloading/placing.

  • When 2 or more persons are engaged in lifting and moving items, then a designated controller/guide/spokesperson should be chosen to coordinate the lift or placement movement timings.  

Confined Spaces/Pits

No employee shall enter areas defined below without authorisation.

A space that is not designed for continuous employee occupancy, and is large enough and so configured that a person can bodily enter into and perform assigned work; and has limited means of entry and exit; and may have a possible hazardous atmosphere that may expose employees to the risk of death, incapacitation, impairment of ability to self-rescue caused by

                  Flammable gases. 

                  Airborne combustible dust. 

                  Atmospheric  oxygen concentration levels below 19.5% or above 23.5%.

                  A toxic atmosphere or substance.

                  Danger of engulfment (collapse).  

Any and all Pitwork will be carried out with a designated safety back up employee whom will be outside (ground level) and will raise the alarm should the employee working within thePitbecome distressed in any fashion, under no circumstances should anyone enter the Pit to rescue or assist the distressed occupant, a pre-planned appropriate rescue plan will be initiated.


A tripod and harness either mechanically or manually operated hoist system is in place and the appropriated training in its safe use has been fulfilled.

2 way Radio or other means of alerting the assistant to a need to be recovered to be in place. 

Time limit.

No smoking or naked flames.

Lighting to be Sealed type so as to confine any sparking during turn on.

Permit to work required.

General confined spaces procedure 

There shall be No unauthorised entry into a confined space/pit/space without written authorisation.


Confined Spaces Regulations 1997.

COSHH regulations 2002.


Trailing leads

Trailing leads to be located against a wall or above head height and supported.

Where they trail for a set time and are within a walk way they are to be encased so as to minimise any damage and negate any trip hazard.

Modern Slavery Act Transparency Statement 2015 / 2016

Slavery and human trafficking are abuses of a person’s freedoms and rights. We are totally opposed to such abuses and take steps to prevent this issue occurring in our operations and supply chains.


Purpose of this Statement

This statement is prepared and published on behalf of Unique, pursuant to the obligation under section 54(1) of the Modern Slavery Act 2015 (the Act). References in this statement to ‘us’, ‘our’ or ‘we’ are to Unique decorating.

This statement identifies the various risk management and mitigation measures, which we have undertaken in our business and supply chains, in relation to slavery and human trafficking.

Meaning of Slavery and Human Trafficking

We understand slavery and human trafficking as defined in the Act, the UN Universal Declaration of Human Rights and the conventions of the International Labour Organisation (ILO), particularly relating to forced or compulsory labour. We recognise that forced labour is a form of slavery and includes debt bondage and the restriction of a person’s freedom of movement whether that be physical or non-physical.


Our Business

We are a decorating and building company . We offer works to and not limited to, ranging from New homes to Town house refurbishments, extensions, lofts and associated works, covering London and its surrounding boroughs.

We aim to provide a complete service encompassing all aspects of the building structure and requirements therein.    


Our Supply Chains

We purchase the majority of our materials from third party suppliers located across the country, sourcing where applicable locally mainly through leading supplying companies.

For the purposes of this statement, we report on steps taken within our supply chain, by which we mean those suppliers with whom we deal directly. We also report on those steps taken within our business or supply chains which have indirect effects on the wider supply chain.

Our Policies Relevant to Slavery and Human Trafficking

In keeping with our commitment to act with integrity in all our business dealings, many of our policies are relevant to mitigating the risk of slavery or human trafficking occurring in any part of our business or our supply chains.

Our relevant policies applicable to unique decorating and building include;


  • Occupational Health, Safety and the Environment Policy

  • Product Supply Compliance

  • Slavery act

  • Code of conduct


Our Team provides guidance, training and tools to enable all employees to operate within the law and within the framework of the Code of Conduct and Group Policies and Standards.

Our Code of Conduct sets out the behaviours we expect from employees in their dealings with colleagues, customers, consumers, suppliers, agents, intermediaries, advisers, governments and competitors. The Code also applies to our business partners. All employees and business partners are expected to act with integrity in accordance with the standards of behaviour set out in the Code of Conduct.