Tis The Season To Avoid Litigation Making Sure Your Office Christmas Party Is Safe

(No Ratings Yet)

According to recent statistics, a third of companies aren’t planning on hosting the traditional office Christmas Party this year, amidst concerns about legal action due to drunken antics and so forth. While I can safely say there are many more office safety risks during a party than the rest of the year (most offices just aren’t built for that level of snacks, alcohol and cheesy music), with a little thinking ahead the office Christmas party can become the celebrated institution it once was – without the dark cloud of litigation hanging overhead. It’s important to keep the office health and safety precautions in the background however – no one likes the idea of constant red tape when they’re trying to unwind. Already over half of managers recently surveyed felt the celebratory atmosphere felt very ‘forced’.

Here are 5 workplace health and safety steps you can take to minimise the risk of a litigious post party hangover.

1) Take it out of the office

The easiest way of avoiding the legal minefield of workplace health and safety laws is to take it out of the office! As I mentioned earlier, the typical office with its computers, water cooler and cubicles is just not built for the antics and tomfoolery of the stereotypical office Christmas party. Booking a restaurant or a hotel may seem like an unnecessary expense in the short term, but the different environment will help people unwind and enjoy themselves, and your precious photocopier will not be damaged by the exhibitionist office clown!

2) Leave off the Mistletoe

This one is less ‘health and safety’ and more to do with employment law, but one of the biggest concerns for legal action is the fear of sexual harassment in the workplace. And while the Mistletoe is a firm favourite, in some cases it really can be asking for trouble. By taking it off the list of decorations, you will limit your responsibility if someone does feel harassed or intimidated – remember that if you are funding the party, then the party will still come under the office rules, including those pertaining to sexual harassment. As a warning about office conduct in general, a worker from Merill Lynch was paid a

Comments are closed.