Snickers' new stretch work shorts - comfortable and lightweight

FABRIC, functionality and fit are hallmarks of Snickers Workwear; it’s the innovation and fabric technology in the design of the new Stretch Shorts for men and women that really set these new garments apart.

These new AllroundWork and FLEXIWork shorts are great for working in the warmer months. Delivering superior flexibility and comfort, these lightweight work shorts come in a body-mapping design and a range of new colours including Hi-vis options.

Made from a self-ventilating stretch fabric with Cordura reinforcements for all-round mobility and durability, they’re packed with comfort and functionality and specially designed for the fast-paced professional who’s always on the go for delivering top class work on site.

For professional tradesmen and women who rely on their gear in demanding environments, Snickers Workwear Work Shorts are a must for everyone who wants the ultimate in cool comfort this summer.

To get more information on what’s right for you in the Snickers Workwear range, visit the website at www.snickersworkwear.co.uk alternatively, email [email protected] or call the Hultafors Group Helpline on 01484 854788.

Best foot forward with Solid Gear safety shoe technology

INCORPORATING some of the most advanced technical features in safety shoe design.

With all the Hallmarks you find in Snickers Workwear – quality, comfort, durability and street-smart style, Solid Gear safety shoes and boots are fast becoming one of the most popular brands chosen by discerning tradesmen and women.

With a wide range to choose from that integrate the type of modern technical designs you’ll find in outdoor and athletic footwear, Solid Gear safety footwear combines best in class materials for comfort, protection and durability.

There’s a host of first-to-market features like GORE-Tex Surround Technology for unrivalled and all-round breathability. Plus ETPU sports footwear performance that delivers unrivalled footbed energy return that really puts a spring in your step.

Added to the Vibram outsoles and Cordura Rip-Stop fabric in other styles, you’ll get rugged protection all day long. What’s more, the GORE-Tex Fabric Technology also makes the footwear water repellent and waterproof to keep your feet dry. Added to which, the unique BOA Closure System on certain styles, distributes the pressure evenly across your feet to ensure a glove-like fit.

Overall, this combination of market-leading materials, fabrics, linings and high-tech features provides the kind of insulation and protection that will keep your feet warm and comfortable all day long.

To get more information on Solid Gear and Toe Guard - the Next Generation of Safety Footwear, visit the website at www.solidgearfootwear.com alternatively, call the Snickers Helpline on 01484 854788.

Lighthouse Club release new features on app

ALONG with technology partners COINS, the Lighthouse Construction Industry Charity’s free App has been upgraded with some fantastic new features just in time for Mental Health Awareness Week.

The new features focus on preventative tools and building resilience in the areas of mental, physical, and financial wellbeing and guides users through a series of questions to provide the best possible information, advice and guidance.

Each section of the app offers learnings about a variety of conditions or issues, self- assessment tools, coping strategies and referral pathways to access expert advice and support.

The charity’s mission is that “no construction worker or their family is alone in a crisis” and this new version of its popular self-support app complements their free 24/7 Construction Industry helpline and their free online “Lunch and Learn” wellbeing courses.

Along with the industry leading Building Mental Health initiative that now has nearly 500 companies signed up to its charter, the charity is already helping to drive significant change through the construction industry, concentrating on making all aspects of support and training relating to wellbeing as accessible as possible by making them free at the point of use.

The latest updates to the app come at a time when the industry desperately needs support. Taking the first step in seeking help with personal issues can be daunting but the app offers people self-learning and coping strategies so that they can help themselves or if necessary, take the next step in seeking professional help.

Key support areas include:

Mental Wellbeing; covering anxiety, depression, anger, suicidal thoughts, sleep and building  resilience

Physical Wellbeing; covering aches and pains, nutrition, weight management cancer, alcohol and drug addiction.

Financial Wellbeing; covering budgeting, debt management, tax and legal advice, retirement planning and emergency financial aid.

The app is not only free and simple to use, it now accesses a major researched library of resources on a vast array of topics and brings them all together in one application. The ‘get help’ function is particularly useful as the built in geolocator signposts users to support from both national help centres and local support services contextualised to the subject being investigated.

Bill Hill, CEO of the Lighthouse Construction Industry Charity said, “By making all our proactive and reactive construction worker wellbeing and welfare support services FREE and totally confidential, we hope to remove all barriers of access. By doing so we move one step closer to our mission “that no construction worker or their family is alone in a crisis”. But we cannot do this without the support of our industry and industry suppliers. A huge thank you is extended to the team at COINS who have worked so hard to ensure that we are ready to share this vital wellbeing support tool at a time that it is most urgently needed. Everyone in construction should have this App on their phone.”

With over 35 years of developing software solutions for construction, leading construction software company COINS are passionate about supporting the industry. CEO, Robert Brown said, "Collaborating with the Lighthouse Construction Industry Charity in developing this important app has been a privilege. It is our way of giving something back to the industry that we are passionate about helping. It is a tool that we hope will be a great help to both construction workers and their families when they need it the most, especially during these difficult times"

The free Construction Industry Helpline mobile App for Android and iOS is available to download now.

Mental Health Awareness Week should be cancelled!

By Bill Hill, CEO of the Lighthouse Club

THE year we cancel Mental Health Awareness Week will be because the mental health of our workforce is treated as significantly and comes as naturally as ensuring their physical safety. It will come at a time when everyone in our industry is aware of the importance of good mental wellbeing, every operation has a mental health policy and the suicide rate in construction has been significantly reduced.

However, according to the recent CIOB survey, taken before the Covid-19 outbreak, we have a long way to go and the day we cancel Mental Health Awareness Week will not be anytime soon.

We need more companies to engage, accelerate and amplify our efforts to improve our workforce wellbeing. By following a simple five step guideline,  any company can embrace the change without considerable financial outlay.

  • Step 1: Commitment.  Management agree policy and sign up to treating mental health as a priority in their operation
  • Step 2: Access to an EAP. Everyone in the operation including all onsite subcontractors should have access to an Employee Assistance Programme. If  no scheme is available,  use our charity’s free  Construction Industry Helpline and supporting App.
  • Step 3: Start the conversation. Deliver regular on-site wellbeing toolbox talks to get people talking together
  • Step 4: Awareness. All people managers should attend an online or on-site Mental Health Awareness course.
  • Step 5: On Site Mental Health First Aiders. Every operation should have an onsite Mental Health First Aider in the same ratio as physical first aiders

Following this simple five step incurs little cost,  makes construction a more attractive place to work for the next generation and could ultimately save lives.  

However, if all else fails try adopting these 3 life principles:

  1. Always ask twice. Make eye contact, you don’t always get the true answer first time around 
  2. Seek to understand before you seek to be understood.  Listen and don’t judge, easier said than done! And be the last to talk.
  3. Always be kind, there is no reason to be unkind even if you need to deliver a tough message it can be done in a humane way.

These three life principles are easy to say and difficult to follow, but if we did, the world would be a better place and Mental Health Awareness Week would be a thing of the past.

Find out more about the 5 Step guideline  www.BuildingMentalHealth.net

New support tools for Checkatrade members through COVID crisis.

Checkatrade, one of the UK’s leading directories of recommended, vetted and monitored trade experts, has announced a number of new initiatives designed to support its trade members during this unprecedented period of lockdown.

It has promoted a new video calling function on its website - a first within the online trade directory market - enabling tradespeople and potential clients to more easily ‘meet’, discuss jobs and obtain quotes from the comfort of their own homes. This means jobs can be safely scoped in advance or booked-in ready for when restrictions are lifted.

Checkatrade has also partnered with Claritas Tax, an accountancy firm specialising in tax advisory and compliance services, to offer trade members practical advice on accessing the financial support available at this time. The guidance, available on the Checkatrade blog, covers three main areas; help for the self-employed, the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme and VAT deferment.

Checkatrade is offering its members financial support and new affiliate packages for the duration of lockdown to allow them to maintain or build their online profile at a fraction of the usual cost.

Mike Fairman, CEO at Checkatrade, said: “Our members work across a broad spectrum of industries. For some it’s business as usual, for others their pipeline of work has collapsed overnight, leading to huge financial uncertainty and untold stress.

"We’re committed to doing all we can to support them. With our members ranging from sole traders through to limited companies, it’s important that everyone has access to the best tools and sound advice so that risks are minimised and opportunities maximised.”

www.checkatrade.com

New GRABO vacuum tool lets you get a handle on heavy lifting

RARELY do you get a completely new power tool come to the market – one that goes where power tools have never gone and yet serves a huge scope of different trades. However, the patented and revolutionary GRABO Vacuum Lifter has done just that.

The GRABO is a hand-held battery powered vacuum lifter that enables the handling of multiple materials from tiles and paving to sheet materials and glass. Its twin seal design works on uneven surfaces such as riven paving or tiles, stippled glass and even on surfaces that are dusty or wet. Even more uniquely, it works on porous materials such as plasterboard, plywood and many types of porous stone, because its vacuum motor can run constantly to compensate air loss through the material. 

With a lifting capacity of up to 170kg, the GRABO offers the user much better lifting positions for materials, helping to reduce manual handling injuries that occur when lifting materials by their edges. It enables you to carry materials with hands close to the waist - the safest and most effective carrying position. Furthermore, by keeping fingers away from the edges it helps you position materials more precisely, preventing fingers being trapped between materials and keeping them away from any applied adhesive.  

If you have a trade counter and customers that are involved in paving, tiling, drylining, façade installation, glazing, stonemasonry, furniture moving, SFS, modular homes or manufacturing, then the GRABO offers a profitable distributor opportunity for you and a welcome relief for your customers.  

For dealer enquiries please contact Exordia Global at: 

www.thegrabo.co.uk/dealer-application

British Safety Council slams PM's 'reckless' message

THE British Safety Council has today demanded that no worker be forced back to their workplace until it has been made safe.

The Government has indicated that more people should be going to work and last night the Prime Minister, Boris Johnson, said: “You should go to work if you can’t work from home and to ensure you are safe at work we have been working to establish new guidance for employers to make workplaces COVID-secure”.

The British Safety Council is providing support to employers with workers on the front line, including healthcare workers and essential workers in retail, manufacturing and construction. As well as providing direct support through the lockdown, the British Safety Council is developing new services to help organisations adapt as lock down restrictions are eased.

Speaking today from his home Mike Robinson, chief executive of the British Safety Council, said: “Yesterday’s announcement compounded a week of mixed messages that will put workers at risk – it is reckless to urge people back to work before clear guidance has been published and before employers have put in place plans to make workplaces safe.

"Instead of a phased plan, allowing managers to understand and interpret guidance, anxious workers are going to be piling back on to public transport without any clear rules and guidance. We are working to help our members and customers to carry out proper risk assessments, but the confusing messages from government are not helping anyone.

“We will look in detail at the guidance when available, and we are working closely with members to ensure that employers carry out their duty to ensure workers are safe, whether that’s at home, travelling to and from work and in their place of work. I know that most people are keen to get back to work and back to some normality, but if we follow this chaotic approach, we risk undermining all the hard work achieved through the lock down.

"In a national emergency there is a strong instinct to give the government the benefit of the doubt – but they need to sort this mess out. When the guidance is published it must put the safety of workers front and centre and end the current confusion.”

Construction workers 'should be actively encouraged to go to work', says PM

LAST night (Sunday 10 May), the Prime Minister delivered a speech updating the UK on the government's position on the lockdown in the face of the coronavirus pandemic.

He announced that those who are not able to work from home, explicitly citing those in the construction sector as an example, 'should be actively encouraged to go to work' as long as it was safe and the workers were able to avoid public transport.

Durnig the address, the Prime Minister also announced that the Government would look into re-opening schools for children of certain age groups from June, and that from Wednesday the rules of only being allowed outside for one hour of exercise per day were to be relaxed from this Wednesday.

Under previous guidance, UK construction companies have not been required to close so far. Yet the Prime Minister's speech is the most high-profile endorsement of such businesses returning to work so far.

However, the Prime Minister has come under fire for the address, with some critics calling the guidance 'vague'.

The devolved administrations in Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland all distanced themselves from Boris Johnson's new 'Stay Alert' message, insisting 'Stay At Home' should be the overriding message to the public.

In Scotland, where non-essential construction work remains banned, First Minister Nicola Sturgeon said after the Prime Minister's address: “I think it is incumbent on him to stress that when he is talking about lifting these restrictions […] he is talking for England.”

More details of the Government's lockdown recovery plan are expected when the government releases guidance later today.

Hands together for PAL Hire’s sanitiser stations

LEADING UK-wide hire supplier PAL HIRE, has secured a deal provide hand sanitiser stations with a guaranteed gel supply for businesses looking to secure the hygiene of their workers and customers.

With an easing of lockdown restrictions rumoured to begin within the next few weeks, the Manchester-based company stands poised to assist businesses and construction sites to protect their workers, as both HSE and CLC guidelines insist workplaces provide additional hand washing facilities, with adequate supplies of soap, water and hand sanitiser.

The dispensers, which come in a variety of sturdy indoor and outdoor, free standing and wall-mounted units, are set to become a key feature of PAL’s Back To Work package deals, providing essential kit and services for companies and the coronavirus crisis recedes.

“We are hugely excited when we are able to secure the deal,” confirmed PAL Hire director Dan Daintry. “It has been extraordinarily difficult for suppliers and distributors up and down the country to secure hand sanitiser gel, but we can now guarantee our customers a reliable stream of it, produced right here in the UK.”

Unusually for the hire company, the units are being offered for sale, as well as for hire. “The cost of hiring these stations will amount to the cost of a sale within a few weeks,” Dan continued. “But increased hygiene standards are not a short-term, knee-jerk reaction to the coronavirus situation.

“This is a huge sea change for the whole UK – and beyond. We will certainly see a huge increase in public hygiene as a permanent fixture of public life. I can well see sanitiser stations becoming perfectly normal – required, even – at events, building sites, venues… anywhere people gather.

“The gel itself is made to a very high standard. I’m sure we’ve all had very dry hands from washing them all day recently, but this gel contains emollients which mean it doesn’t dry out the skin. In addition to that, it’s ecologically friendly and protects your hands for up to two hours.

“Best of all, the fact that it is British-made allows us to guarantee our customers a steady supply, even as the lockdown lifts.”

The hand sanitiser stations are available to hire or buy now.

www.palhire.co.uk

New ProtecWork protective clothing from Snickers Workwear

FULLY accredited, advanced Protective Wear for heat and flame, electrostatic, mechanical and chemical risk environments from the UK’s leading workwear innovator.

Snickers Workwear’s ProtecWork range has new additions to its protective wear garments including Class 1 and 2 hi-vis work trousers, tops and sweat shirts.

Fully accredited for a variety of risk environments such as heat and flame, electrostatic, chemical and bad weather conditions, all the garments are manufactured from tailor-made fabrics designed to respond to the demands and risk factors of the conditions in which they’re worn.

So with over 60 different garments and accessories to choose from, you can make sure you get the right protection, visibility, flexibility, comfort and freedom of movement on site. Check out the new Snickers ProtecWork range to fit your workday and wellbeing on site.  

For more information on ProtecWork, visit www.snickersworkwear.co.uk , call the Helpline on 01484 854788 or download a digital catalogue 

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