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Health and Safety resources


The English Healthy Universities Network endorses a strategic 'whole university' approach to health. Institutions interested in joining the Network can find information at the Healthy Universities website - where you can also access resources developed through the project Developing Leadership and Governance for Healthy Universities, which ran from 2009-2012. These include a toolkit comprising seven guidance packages, case studies and a self review tool. Most recently the Network published research in May 2018 on ‘whole university leadership for health, wellbeing and sustainability’.

UCEA provides case studies of HE institutions work on employee wellbeing and health.

Institutions can also access resources on staff wellbeing from the project Improving Performance through Wellbeing and Engagement, which ended in September 2011. The main resources from the project are available from the UCEA website.

Stress management and mental health at work

UCEA and the HE trade unions have developed a stress and mental wellbeing resources pack for HE institutions. The pack was developed jointly by UCEA and the trade unions through the Higher Education Safety and Health (HESH) Forum and is regularly updated:         

Stress and mental wellbeing resources for Higher Education Institutions   

Emergency Response Procedures and Business Contingency Planning

In 2008 The Association of University Chief Security Officers (AUSCO) developed a guide, with the support of HEFCE, on Planning for and Managing Emergencies. Since 2008 many institutions have taken positive steps to increase their resilience by establishing new processes for both business continuity and emergency management, and by training their staff in this field. 

This revised Guide encapsulates the experience and lessons learned from institutions around the world and its aim is to further assist HEIs in developing their ability to respond to emergencies and allow them to take their planning to the next step.   

Resilience in Higher Education Institutions 2014

Project ARGUS (Education) is an initiative led by the National Counter Terrorism Security Office (NaCTSO). It asks HE and FE institutions to consider their preparedness for a terrorist attack or other critical incident. It achieves this by guiding participants through a simulated multi-media attack which identifies the measures that can assist in preventing, handling and recovering from such an incident. It also explores a situation where armed terrorists gain access to a university building. Attendance at project events is free of charge and is primarily aimed at senior management and those responsible for Health, Safety and Security working within HE and FE sectors.

Institutions may also wish to contact the HE Business Continuity Network (HEBCoN) for further support.

Employing HE staff overseas

UCEA has developed a toolkit to assist institutions in developing staffing strategies for overseas campuses. The toolkit includes a number of checklists on the issues associated with staffing an overseas operation – either by sending existing staff there for a short period, or by hiring local (or other international) staff – including a section on health and safety issues. The toolkit may also be helpful when considering issues associated with sending staff on business or fieldtrips abroad. 

Sickness absence data

UCEA members can access benchmarking data on sickness absence in HE. Benchmarking reports up to 2017-18 are available for UCEA members to download.

Page last updated 29 January 2019