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NASC Launches International Information Membership

NASC Launches International Information Membership

The NASC has launched an international information membership category in response to growing demand from companies based overseas to align with the confederation.

The new category is open to any non-contracting scaffolding industry organisation trading outside of the UK. This includes training providers, health and safety consultants, scaffold designers, insurers and other service providers to the access and scaffolding industry.

Robin James, NASC Managing Director, said: “In recent years we have found that more and more businesses involved in the scaffolding industry overseas have been looking to forge closer relationships with the NASC and enjoy the wide range of benefits already afforded to their UK-based counterparts through the NASC Information Membership.

“We are delighted to address this demand and look forward to welcoming international information members from across the globe into the NASC fold.”

NASC international information membership confers the following benefits:

  • Circulation of relevant NASC literature
  • Up to 50% discount on NASC publications
  • Opportunity to attend events such as the NASC AGM, Annual Ball and Awards
  • NASC international information membership certificate
  • Advertising opportunities within NASC publications
  • Promotional opportunities at trade events/exhibitions
  • Sponsorship and advertising opportunities at NASC events
  • Inclusion of company details in NASC publications e.g. NASC Yearbook
  • Inclusion of company details on the NASC website
  • Attendance at NASC meetings (by agreement)

NASC international information membership subscription is £800 plus VAT per calendar year.

For more information click here.

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Reverse Charge VAT Reminder

Reverse Charge VAT Reminder

HMRC is making major changes to the VAT for the construction sector. The changes, dubbed Reverse Charge VAT, will affect payments between contractors and subcontractors from October 1 2019.

It is important that you understand the changes and plan for them as the new scheme could have large repercussions for your cashflow. For more information click here.

The Joint Taxation Committee has produced a reverse charge vat training note and a draft letter for full contracting members to send to any VAT registered subcontractors they have informing them of the changes.

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NASC Publishes Mental Health Policy Guidance

NASC Publishes Mental Health Policy Guidance

The NASC has moved to provide scaffolding companies with a go-to mental health and wellbeing resource through its latest publication, SG38:19 Guidance on Mental Health Wellbeing.

Aimed at breaking down the stigma surrounding mental health within the access and scaffolding industry, this new guidance helps employers to better understand mental health, and to create an action plan for employees to thrive at work. It provides advice and contact details of other organisations who can also provide support.

SG38 was developed by the Current Affairs Committee in conjunction with the Health & Safety Committee and forms part of the NASC’s wider Head for Heights campaign, which aims to promote the importance of focusing on employee wellbeing in the workplace.

Robin James, NASC Managing Director, said: “We are pleased to have published this guidance, which we believe will play a huge role in empowering employers across the UK, enabling them to better support the mental health needs of their employees.

“This guidance provides employers with proactive steps they can take to improve wellbeing in the workplace as well as a host of useful links and services that they can signpost their employees to.”

SG38 can be downloaded for free via the NASC online shop. Hard copies may also be purchased via the same webpage.

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NASC and Apex Represent Scaffolding Industry at Big Bang Careers Fair

NASC and Apex Represent Scaffolding Industry at Big Bang Careers Fair

More than 2,000 pupils were switched on to scaffolding during the Big Bang South West careers fair in Exeter.

The daylong event saw 7 to 19-year-olds from across the region learn more about opportunities available to them under the STEM (science, technology, engineering and maths) umbrella.

The NASC, CISRS and NASC full contracting member Apex Scaffolding, based in Exeter, flew the flag for the industry, making the point that there is much more to scaffolding than being on the tools. Apex were attending as part of the ‘Construction Zone’, jointly co-ordinated by the Building Greater Exeter and Building Plymouth partnerships.

NASC Training Officer Henry Annafi said: “It was great to engage with so many keen schoolchildren, who all really took to our K’Nex scaffolding exercises, which mirrors the same structural principles seen on scaffolding structures of all shapes and sizes across the country.

“What was so encouraging to see was the pupils’ enthusiasm to get involved with the building tasks and also learn more about the broad range of careers available to them in the scaffolding industry; from the visible – labourers and scaffolders to the less visible – designers, inspectors and procurement professionals.

“We were delighted to accept Apex Scaffolding’s invitation to attend and hope that many of the young people we spoke to will go on to pursue a career in scaffolding.”

Matthew Cousins, NASC South West Regional Vice Chair and Chairman of Building Greater Exeter added: “Apex Scaffolding have been involved in the Building Greater Exeter partnership since its inception and were delighted to be able to work with the NASC to ensure that our industry was represented as a career opportunity as part of the construction zone at the Big Bang Fair South West.”

As part of its training and recruitment objectives, the NASC is forging ever-closer links with education providers and potential scaffolding employees of the future.

For more information please contact NASC Training Officer Henry Annafi via email here.

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NASC Hosts Temporary Works Seminar

NASC Hosts Temporary Works Seminar

More than 100 delegates converged on Birmingham last week for the first NASC and TWf Temporary Works Seminar.

The half-day event saw four speakers take to the lectern, delivering presentations on a range of temporary works topics.

John Underwood, HSE Inspector, gave an insight into what the HSE is looking for in terms of safe and compliant scaffolding when they step on site, and Simon Hughes, Managing Director of Simian Risk, spoke about the code of practice for the design and management of temporary works, touching upon the recently updated BS 5975.

Robin James, NASC Managing Director, gave an overview of the history, aims and objectives of the NASC and the projects and initiatives being rolled out and in development to help make the scaffolding industry safer. These include the Head for Heights mental health awareness campaign, a series of ‘refresher’ toolbox talks and production of an SG4 Preventing Falls site poster.

Duncan Reed, Digital Construction Process Manager at Trimble Solutions Limited, was the final speaker, delivering a presentation exploring the role digital solutions such as virtual and augmented reality, digital scanning and digital workflows can play in increasing safety and efficiencies in the scaffolding industry.

A number of NASC supplier members exhibited at the seminar.

Robin James, NASC Managing Director, said: “I’d like to thank my fellow speakers, all the delegates that attended and the NASC supplier members that exhibited at the seminar for making this event such a success.

“It was great to bring such a diverse group of professionals together in one room to learn more about temporary works, particularly how we can all work more efficiently and collaboratively to ensure works are carried out as safely as possible and to the highest possible standards.”

The NASC and TWf are co-hosting an event focused on the updated BS 5975 title later this month. This event has already sold out. A second NASC and TWf Temporary Works Seminar is planned for later this year.

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CISRS Card Holders Urged Not to Panic Following CSCS ‘Grandfather Rights’ Withdrawal Announcement

CISRS Card Holders Urged Not to Panic Following CSCS ‘Grandfather Rights’ Withdrawal Announcement

By David Mosley, CISRS Managing Director

The Construction Skills Certification Scheme (CSCS) has recently announced plans to phase out issuing cards under Industry Accreditation or ‘Grandfather Rights’.

The decision has been made to ensure all CSCS card applicants can demonstrate the achievement of a nationally-recognised construction-related qualification – either NVQ/SVQ or as a minimum registration to a vocational qualification (VQ) by 2024.

The CSCS proposal will have very little impact on CISRS card holders as those who hold current valid Scaffolder/Advanced cards but have not completed VQ (as it was not a requirement at the time of qualification into the scheme) will not be required to complete the qualification retrospectively.

CISRS withdrew Industry Accreditation over 30 years ago. NVQ/SVQ was introduced to the CISRS Scheme in 1996. All those commencing training after this date have been required to complete a VQ.

This would also apply for those who achieved through Assessed Route of Entry as a VQ was already a requirement.

The National Occupational Standard (NOS), which makes up the units of the VQ is based upon the practical and theoretical content of CISRS Scheme Part 1 and Part 2 for Level 2 VQ e.g. Health and Safety, Independents, Birdcage, Tower scaffolds etc and Advanced course content for Level 3 e.g. Organising of Equipment, Health and Safety, Suspended Scaffolds, Temporary roofs etc.

Course content has remained fairly stable since the formal introduction of the scheme in 1979, as such those who completed training prior to the introduction of a VQ have already covered the content of the NOS.

The introduction of CPD for scaffolders has also allowed the scheme to be viewed favourably as it can ensure that its workforce is kept up to date with the most recent guidance and regulation.

 

Inspection cards

The course content of the CISRS Basic Inspection Course is based upon the content of the CISRS Part1 and Part 2 courses as such it is mapped to the NOS/Level 2.

The same principle applies for the content of the Advanced Inspection Course is based upon the content of the Advanced course as such it is mapped to the NOS/Level 3.

The requirement for refresher training (to re-sit the course every 5 years) also ensures cardholders are kept up to date with the most recent guidance and regulation.

 

Supervisors

CISRS are currently in discussion with CSCS in regard of Supervisor cardholders. NVQs have been linked to CSCS Supervisory cards for some time and CISRS Scaffolding Supervisors will be required to complete a relevant VQ going forward. This could possibly be a general Occupational Working Supervision Level 3 VQ or alternatively a Scaffolding Supervisors VQ could be developed.

Once the most suitable qualification has been identified a date will be set for it becoming a mandatory scheme requirement. There are currently around 1,500 Supervisors cardholders, which accounts for approximately 2% of the total CISRS cardholders.

CISRS will need to confirm the route to qualification for these cardholders as some will have progressed via the Scaffolder/Advanced route as such would meet the content of the NOS, some may already hold a Level 3 VQ and others may have achieved other Supervisory/Management VQs.

Once this information has been ratified CISRS will consider the best way of addressing this issue. Existing Cardholders who do not hold the relevant VQ may be required to register for a supervisory VQ by 2024.

For more information please contact enquiries@cisrs.org.uk or visit the CSCS website here.