My office is freezing! Do I have to stay at work without heating?

It's not as if winter doesn't come every year, so employers should be anticipating possible problems. If a workshop is cold, then a simple loss of your grip could mean the loss of your finger. Or, in an office, a cold environment could mean a loss of concentration for the staff. So not providing a good working temperature to save a few pennies could cost the boss dearly.

Plus of course your employer would be breaking the law by letting the temperature drop. There is a minimum temperature below which your employer needs to take action, or send you somewhere warmer (like home). The law on minimum temperatures is clear and unambiguous – at least 13oC for workplaces where strenuous work is carried out, and 16oC generally.

You can find out more on the Temperature pages of the Health and Safety Executive website.

Note: This content is provided as general background information and should not be taken as legal advice or financial advice for your particular situation. Make sure to get individual advice on your case from your union, a source on our free help page or an independent financial advisor before taking any action.

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