All UK workplaces must display the updated health and safety law poster from April, but many organisations are unaware that the new legislation is fast approaching, according to workplace equipment supplier Slingsby.

Workplaces have been required to display the current health and safety poster in a prominent position since 1999, as part of the Health and Safety Information for Employees Regulations. A new version was introduced in 2009, and following a five-year transition period, all workplaces will need to have the new poster in place from 5 April.

Lee Wright, marketing director at Slinsgby, explained: “The old health and safety law poster is a familiar sight but it’s visually unappealing with too much small text, and despite it being easily recognisable to millions of people, very few have ever read it. The new poster is designed to be easy to digest with less text, and it contains colour images which immediately make it more eye-catching.

“Another change is that employers are no longer required to write contact details for local enforcing authorities and Employment Medical Advisory Services on the new poster. Instead, there’s a helpline that employees can call with any queries.

“We’ve been selling the updated poster since it was first unveiled, but we know from our regular site visits to businesses across all industries that lots of organisations are still using the old poster – and the majority of these are unaware that these changes are just a few months away, so there will be lots that miss the deadline.”

Mr Wright added: “Another development on the new poster is that each one includes a hologram and serial number in the bottom right corner to certify that it’s genuine, because even health and safety posters can fall victim to counterfeiters.”