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CSCS SET TO RAISE BAR ON ENTRY LEVEL SAFETY

Misuse of green card undermined scheme as measure of competence

The Construction Skills Certification Scheme (CSCS) provides people employed on construction sites with a portable means of identity and proof of competence to carry out their work on site with a range of CSCS cards to reflect the varied occupations in construction.

Following extensive consultation across the construction industry, CSCS plans to introduce significant changes to its card scheme over the next year.

CSCS plan that from July 2014 labourers applying for an entry level green card will be required to achieve a knowledge based qualification, ‘Health and Safety in a Construction Environment’ aimed at demonstrating their knowledge of the most common health and safety issues affecting UK construction sites.

How this will work is to be determined by industry, taking into account the results of a pilot that is taking place during the Winter 2013.

‘Academically Qualified Person’ (ACP) category to be introduced

From September 30th 2013, CSCS will now recognise additional construction related qualifications namely HNC, HND, Degrees, NEBOSH Construction Certificates and National Diplomas and CIOB Certificates.

People with these qualifications will be eligible to hold a CSCS Academically Qualified Person (AQP) yellow/white card whilst they gain vocational qualifications or membership of a recognised professional body.

CSCS chief executive Graham Wren says:

“We hope the new green card will be introduced in Summer 2014 after we have completed the pilot study. CSCS was established to provide the industry with a means to verify the competence of workers on construction sites.

Misuse of the current entry level green card diluted the effectiveness of the scheme and led to confusion over whether CSCS cards were purely a passport to gain access to site or a true measure of an individual’s competence to carry out their job.

The new green card will set a standard for all those working as a Labourer. Our aim is to set this standard at a level that demonstrates a worker’s knowledge and understanding of basic health and safety issues without it being prohibitive in terms of time and cost.

Content covered in the new qualification follows the recommendations in the PyeTait report published in 2011 relating to routes to competence in the construction industry.”

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