Speak Up, Stay Safe

Speak Up, Stay Safe is a British Safety Council campaign that aims to put young people and confident communication at the heart of good health and safety.

Speak Up, Stay Safe is a British Safety Council campaign that aims to put young people and confident communication at the heart of good health and safety.

Visit the Speak up, Stay Safe website for an overview of the campaign. Its relevant if you are at school, looking for work or have just started a new job, or even if you are an employer. We can help you take simple actions to avoid getting hurt or ill at work.

Why not join in the conversation? Follow Speak Up, Stay Safe on Twitter or like us on Facebook. If you want to get in touch to support our campaigns, please speak to Matthew Holder at

See the workplace through the eyes of young workers

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Young people

Are you still at school? Or have you just started work?

Isn't health and safety a lifetime away or for other people to worry about?

In fact, your lack of experience when you start work can get you hurt. And you may already have a part-time job, a summer job or be doing work experience. Click here for info on working age, hours and minimum wage.

Remember work is like any other part of life. The chance of getting hurt in most workplaces is pretty low. But some things at work can hurt you or might hurt someone else. Click here for some common hazards and risks.

Stress can lead to injury or worse. Click here for information on stress symptoms and what you can do about it.

Follow our tips and links below and you'll add an extra layer of protection.

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    If it feels unsafe it probably is. Stop what you’re doing.

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    Trust your instincts and be confident.

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    Don’t pretend you know or can do something if you’re not sure.

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    Be prepared and alert – tiredness, drink and drugs don’t help you be safe.


Are you new to youth social action? Do you need to know about health and safety but worry about risks to young people? Do you worry about your liability or that the whole thing will be bureaucratic and time-consuming?

You’re in the right place. The British Safety Council is supporting the #iwillcampaign that aims to make social action part of life for as many 10 to 20-year-olds as possible by 2020. By social action we mean practical action in the service of others that creates positive change. Most volunteering falls into this category.

This site brings together the latest information about keeping risks to a minimum in the world of social action and in a way that is sensible and proportionate. Check our fact-sheets you can download. Click here for info on risk assessment for volunteering.

Don't be afraid of the law - find out more here. The first thing to say is that the UK is a very safe place for youth social action. Check our videos to find out more.

Many of the tasks that you will ask young people to do will be low risk. There are of course risks attached to some activities and there are risk factors associated with young people you should be aware of. Our game is popular with young people and introduces them to basic ideas around hazard and risk.

Taking simple steps in line with the information here will help you be successful: young people can’t help communities if risks aren’t properly managed.

Let us know what you think of the site. Please email with your comments.


Young people are vital for all our future prosperity. Given the increased risks that workers face when they are new to a job (HSE stats), it is vital that employers take some simple steps to ensure that young people start their working lives as they mean to go on: healthy and safe.

It is an employer's duty to protect the health, safety and welfare of their employees, including young people, and other people who might be affected by their business. Employers must do whatever is reasonably practicable to achieve this. Click here for legal duties relating to young people's health and safety.

This means making sure that young people (and others) are protected from anything that may cause harm, effectively controlling any risks to injury or health that could arise in the workplace.

Some workers may have particular requirements, for example, new and young workers, new or expectant mothers, and people with disabilities. You can get more help on HSE's diversity pages.

Click here for information on factors influencing young people's health and safety; here for advice on inductions and communicating with young people.

Useful downloads

There are certain factors to bear in mind when working with young people. The following downloads contain useful information to help you take these factors into account.

Most of it is obvious and should be a normal part of how you assess and control risks at your workplace.

Everyone is different, and that applies to young people. Some will be shy, others are confident or over-confident, there is no one rule for all.

There is evidence to explain why employers need to think about the health and safety of young people engaged in their workplace.

When employing a young person under the age of 18, whether for work, apprenticeships or work experience, employers have the same responsibilities for their health, safety and welfare as they do for other workers.

Young people are likely to need more supervision than adults. Good supervision will help an employer get a clear idea of the young person’s capabilities and progress in the job and monitor the effectiveness of their training.

Communication can be critical in maintaining health and safety. This can be in the form of safety information, communications between team members or between different teams during operations or maintenance work, and emergencies.