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What should my employer do to prevent RSI?
Employers have a statutory duty to carry out a risk assessment of any hazardous task or equipment, and consult their workforce through union-recognised safety reps. This applies to your workstation, also known as Display Screen Equipment (DSE). Equipment designed to reduce the risk of RSI, such as an ergonomic mouse or wrist pads, is available.
Employers must follow the advice set out in the Display Screen Equipment (DSE) Regulations 1992.
A downloadable tool to help prevent musculoskeletal disorders of the upper limbs (such as RSI) has been developed by the Health and Safety Executive (HSE) and the Health and Safety Laboratory (HSL). The Assessment of Repetitive Tasks (ART) tool is aimed at workplaces where workers carry out repetitive tasks. The HSE says it can help identify where the significant risks lie and suggest how to prioritise improvements.
You are entitled to rest breaks under the Working Time Regulations. Apart from the obligation to provide a minimum rest break of an uninterrupted 20 minutes every six hours, the Regulations entitle you to ‘adequate’ rest breaks where the work pattern puts your health and safety at risk because work is monotonous or the work rate pre-determined.
For further information go to our RSI section.