Our ref: HSR/3/2
Head Office Circular: NP/196/23
15th November 2023
To: The Secretary
WORLD TOILET DAY - SUNDAY 19th NOVEMBER 2023
Since I wrote last year on World Toilet Day, the issues raised by this day have continued to be a central health and safety demand for many RMT members.
For example, RMT bus members agreed a resolution, titled “Toilet Dignity”, at their National Bus Workers Industrial Organising Conference this year, which called on the RMT to support and campaign for toilet dignity for all bus drivers.
Things are that bad within the industry that the ORR (Office of Rail and Road) felt forced to note in their Annual Report of Health and Safety on Britain’s Railways this year that “It is unacceptable that the industry fails to provide adequate toilet facilities for staff and indeed this is a legal requirement. There is an opportunity for operators to provide shared access to their own facilities and go some way to meeting the human need and dignity requirements of the workforce”.
I wrote to ORR asking why they did not use their enforcement powers to ensure employers address this issue. Unfortunately, ORR declined to answer my question directly and instead explained that provision of toilet facilities had improved in some areas.
If you decide to campaign for improved toilet facilities in workplaces covered by your branch/Regional Council area, then can I recommend the following resources:
RSSB web site “Provision of Welfare Facilities for Rail Workers”
ITF resource, “Sanitation Rights are Human Rights, Activist Toolkit”: https://sanitation.itfglobal.org/?utm_source=Socials&utm_medium=posts&utm_campaign=sharesanitationtoolkitpost
Background to World Toilet Day, https://www.worldtoiletday.info/learn.
Michael Lynch, General Secretary