Postal worker sacked for refusing to wear a helmet is reinstated

The Royal Mail made helmets compulsory for all cycling posties in October 2003. At the time, the compulsion was backed by the Communication Workers Union but now the CWU has been instrumental in getting Joanne Cyprus her job back. She was sacked in August for refusing to don a lid. 100 Royal Mail staff had threatened to strike if Cyprus was not reinstated.
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Postal workers in Wythenshawe, Manchester, were to have gone on strike soon had Royal Mail won an appeal hearing, held on Friday.

The Communication Workers Union supported Cyprus at the hearing. Posties normally get warnings for failing to comply with the helmet rule and the CWU said sacking Cyprus was "unfair."

But Joanne got her job back after an appeal hearing last Friday.

There's no Health and Safety Executive requirement for cycle helmets to be used by UK employees.

The Health and Safety Executive's position is:

“Cycle helmets used on the public highway are specifically excluded from the Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) at work regulations. This means that it would be very hard for an employer to force an employee to wear a cycle helmet on health and safety grounds. HSE has no remit to dictate the uniform policy of a company unless it falls within the scope of PPE. Ultimately, the wearing of cycle helmets is a matter of individual choice, any stance to the contrary could potentially be challenged on human rights grounds. With regards to the use of cycle helmets on the public roads by members of the public, this is a policy area that falls totally within the remit of the Department for Transport.”

CWU's position on cycle helmets:

http://www.cwu.org/default.asp?step=4&pid=177

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