The employer is required by law to ensure that young workers cause no danger to themselves or others. By law, the employer must provide teaching, instruction and personal guidance for young workers who do not yet have the occupational skills and experience required for the job. The employer must take into account the work conditions and the age and other personal characteristics of the young worker.
Induction improves occupational safety
Well-implemented induction training helps young workers learn work routines quicker, reducing the risk of errors and accidents. Induction also relieves the stress of the young worker and helps him/her integrate into the workplace community. Efficiency and quality also improve when an employee is up to speed with his/her job duties and responsibilities.
It is important for the employer to take the individual capabilities of young workers into account in induction training. It must be established what skills and experience the young worker has so that the duration and scope of the induction training may be determined. There should be an up-do-date induction plan and materials available at the workplace. The induction instructors must be given enough time to perform their duties.
The young worker must be informed in sufficient detail what is expected of him/her:
- following the employer’s instructions and the ground rules of the workplace,
- eliminating or reporting defects and shortcomings noted,
- using personal protective equipment and appropriate work clothing,
- using tools, machinery and equipment in accordance with instructions (e.g. regarding the use of safety devices and protective equipment).
The young worker must also be instructed in what to do in cases of disruption or exceptional circumstances. It is also important to tell them what to do in situations where they may encounter inappropriate behaviour.
Moreover, the young worker must be encouraged to ask about anything that remains unclear.
Training and instruction in work that is especially harmful and hazardous
The Government Decree on Work Especially Harmful and Hazardous to Young Workers contains more detailed provisions on how training and instruction are to be implemented.
- Before beginning a new stage of work, the employer must ensure that the young worker is sufficiently well trained in the work in question and any hazards involved and that he/she can follow the occupational safety instructions.
- While the young worker is learning a particular stage of work or work method, he/she must work under the guidance and supervision of an experienced and skilled employee.
- Particular attention must be paid to the guidance and supervision of the young worker in the course of the work too.
The Decree lists matters in which young workers must be carefully and sufficiently instructed and trained. These matters include:
- conditions at the workplace and performing the work safely,
- any health hazards involved in the work and how to combat them,
- the safe use of machinery and equipment and of chemical products,
- safe procedures that must be observed when beginning and ending production; cleaning machinery; performing regulations, maintenance or repairs; and in foreseeable disruptions in production and in the case of malfunctioning machinery or equipment, and
- the safety regulations for the machinery and equipment used and the chemical products used; procedures and precautions to be observed at the workplace under occupational safety and health regulations; and first aid instructions.