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COMPETENCE FIRST ON PUBLIC WORKS IN SCOTLAND

New Government policy makes skills cards compulsory

A new policy is being introduced for the assessment of skills, competence and safety standards on construction sites in Scotland.

All companies engaged in new public sector construction contracts must ensure that on-site staff are registered with the Construction Skills Certification Scheme (CSCS) or an equivalent. The Scottish Building Federation had asked the Scottish Government to introduce the new policy.

Deputy First Minister Nicola Sturgeon said:

“Scotland’s public sector spends over £2 billion pa on construction related contracts. Adopting schemes like CSCS can make a significant difference to efficient working and health and safety on construction sites.

This is particularly important given the significant challenges the construction industry faces in the current economic climate. I would urge other parts of the public sector to adopt the same policy.”

Michael Levack, Chief Executive of the Scottish Building Federation said:

“I’m delighted to see the Scottish Government putting its weight behind formal accreditation of skills amongst construction workers. The Scottish Building Federation looks forward to working with Nicola Sturgeon on other similar initiatives to drive continued improvements in health and safety in the construction sector.”

Harry Frew, Regional Secretary of UCATT Scotland, said:

“While we support the statement from the Scottish Government that these cards can make a significant difference to health and safety, it must be the appropriate card for the work being undertaken. Too often employers will sign workers up to the easiest available card, rather than ensuring that they have the skills and qualifications for the job required.”

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