Keeping our staff and customers safe every day – 28 April 2021

At Unite Students, we are committed to ensuring that our customers live in safe and secure properties and on World Day for Safety and Health at Work it’s important to highlight the incredible work that our staff do behind the scenes to keep up this promise.

To our customers, it’s their home which is why we make every effort to ensure that it is clean, safe and comfortable. Whereas our teams turn up every day to their workplace and expect that to be safe as well.

Our employees face a range of health and safety risks at work, especially when it comes to cleaning and maintaining our properties. Our teams also have to work in shifts, at night or sometimes on their own, and we recognise that this can have an impact on their health and wellbeing, so we have recently focussed on training in this area to ensure our teams feel supported.

At Unite Students our teams know that safety is everyone’s responsibility, and we all take pride in playing our part to keep our customers and each other safe. To support with this, our health and safety team work closely with our property teams to ensure that everyone has access to specialist advice when needed.

We recognise, of course, that unfortunately things can go wrong, and it's important that we understand where and when incidents might arise. We have recently upgraded our health and safety software system to help us capture and predict the type of incidents likely to happen. This will enable us to put preventative measures in place. Customers, visitors, and contractors will be encouraged to report anything they believe to be unsafe to our teams, who will record the issue and take the appropriate action.

In early 2020, we received the British Safety Council’s 5 Star rating for Occupational Health and Safety and have recently been awarded the prestigious ‘Sword of Honour’. However, we haven’t stopped here and we are always looking for ways to improve health, safety and wellbeing at Unite Students. We look to our teams to be involved in new ideas on how we can improve things – after all, they are doing the work. Some recent examples include trialling body-worn cameras and testing app-based health and safety inspections.

Fire safety, more than ever before, is a huge focus for us and new regulations plus the availability of insight and knowledge following the tragic fire at Grenfell Tower have undoubtedly helped influence the improvements we have made.

The last year has shown the commitment and resilience of our teams during the ongoing pandemic, with health and safety pushed to the forefront of people’s minds more than ever before. We are making sure that we use the lessons learned during this challenging time. Our priority is working to maintain the health and safety of everyone who lives in, visits, and works at a Unite Students property not just today, but for 365 days of every year.

 

Written by Steph Camm, Head of Health and Safety

Steph trained as an Environmental Health Practitioner and worked for Local Government before moving into the Private sector in 2008. Steph worked for Hilton Worldwide for six years as Area Safety & Security Manager for London. In 2014 Steph moved to Unite Students and now manages the Health & Safety Team who, along with our property teams are responsible for the Health, Safety, Security and Wellbeing of around 2000 employees and approx. 74,000 students across the 173 properties