PPE for 'workers' as well as employees

From 6 April 2022, employers will have to provide personal protective equipment (PPE) to workers, as well as employees, who may be exposed to health and safety risks at work.

The Personal Protective Equipment at Work (Amendment) Regulations 2022 amend the main 1992 regulations to extend the duty on employers to provide PPE to people classified as a ‘limb (b) worker’ under employment law. Such a worker is anyone that works under:

  • a contract of employment; or
  • any contract, whether express or implied and (if it is express) whether oral or in writing, whereby the individual undertakes to do or perform personally any work or services for another party to the contract whose status is not by virtue of the contract that of a client or customer of any profession or business undertaking carried on by the individual

Examples of workers that will fall under this definition include those who carry out casual or irregular work for one or more organisations, such as agency or short-term workers, and those who only carry out work if they choose to.

The HSE has published guidance to help employers prepare for this change.