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Ben Jones
Ben Jones, UK Lawyer
Category: Law
Satisfied Customers: 47388
Experience:  Qualified Solicitor - Please start your question with 'For Ben Jones'
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Hi its the company I work can they force me to work on a scaffold

Resolved Question:

Hi its the company I work can they force me to work on a scaffold if I'm scared of heights.
Submitted: 3 years ago.
Category: Law
Expert:  Ben Jones replied 3 years ago.

Ben Jones :

Hello, my name is XXXXX XXXXX it is my pleasure to assist you with your question today. What are you employed to do and how long have you worked there for?

Customer:

I'm a carpenter abt 5 years

Ben Jones :

is this request to work on scaffolding new?

Customer:

Yes and I've informed them that I'm scared of heights

Ben Jones :

does it form a large part of your job, or is it occasionally that you may be required to do it?

Customer:

Only occasonally

Ben Jones :

ok let me get my response ready please

Ben Jones :

It is unlikely that this would be classified as a disability as it is not serious enough to affect your everyday activities and it is only the occasional issues you may face if you are somewhere high. So you will not have the more stringent protection that disabled employees may get in terms of discrimination.


 


However, this is still a health and safety issue because if you are scared of heights then there is a risk that you could do something impulsive or without thinking, which could injure you or others around you. You cannot be forced to go on scaffolding and you can argue that this was never part of your job description, having only been introduced recently.


 


The main issue, however, remains the fact that your employer has a duty to ensure your health and safety at work and if there are reasons that could make you unsafe or expose you at risk, they must take steps to ensure that these risks are either removed, or at least reduced to ensure that the risk is at a minimum. It could, for example, include not assigning you to work that involves heights and that could be the most obvious and easy way to deal with it.

Customer:

Thank you

Ben Jones :

you are most welcome

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