Hairdressing health and safety laws

The National Hairdressers’ Federation (NHF) has welcomed a recent decision by the European Commission (EC) not to press ahead with proposed changes to health and safety laws affecting salons.

As part of its drive to cut red tape, the EC has announced it will not be taking forward proposals which, the NHF said, could have banned salon staff from wearing high heels, required them to wear elbow-length gloves when washing hair and limited the amount of time they could spend with clients on the salon floor.

According to the NHF, the reforms could have cost salons and barbers in the industry as much as £75 million a year, if enacted to the full, based on calculations by the Health and Safety Executive (HSE).

While welcoming the news of the shelving of the proposals, a source at the Federation said the hairdressing industry should not assume the proposals are “dead and buried”.

There are plans for the EC to carry out impact assessments in early 2014 on the cost of introducing the laws.

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