There’s no denying that the global pandemic has significantly disrupted lives in many ways. According to analysis from the Centre for Mental Health, at least half a million more people in the UK may experience mental ill health as a result of COVID-19.
Awareness days dedicated to women working within STEM industries are now well-celebrated and firmly established across the globe. However, workplace gender segregation in the 21st century continues to be an ongoing issue. Now, pioneering work around workplace diversity by Komatsu Australia has been recognised by the Institute of Quarrying (IQ) in its prestigious, annual Caernarfon Award.
Last month Martin Riley, senior vice-president of Tarmac, became new President of the Institute of Quarrying (IQ), succeeding his predecessor Phil Redmond. In a recent Zoom interview with QM, he spoke about a global vision for IQ, the key priorities for the professional body and the challenges facing the minerals extractives sector in the post-pandemic world.
One of the many benefits of being an IQ member is access to advice, best practice and industry resources. These resources exist in different formats and include everything from textbooks to factsheets, videos to webinars through to industry articles and case studies.
Last year the Institute of Quarrying launched its ‘Creating Future Leaders’ strategy at the Fellows Lunch. The strategy set out the vision and role of IQ in the mineral products industry.
This will be a year that few of us will ever forget. So much of what we have known has gone out of the window, not just at work but in our social and personal lives too. We have had to find new ways of being engaged and connected with ourselves and others.
Operators across the mineral products and quarrying sector share many recruitment challenges. These include replacing an ageing workforce, skills retention, and presenting the sector as an attractive choice for today’s school, college and university leavers.
The UK mineral extractives sector directly employs 74,000 people at over 2,000 active sites and plants, and supports an additional 3.5 million jobs throughout the supply chain1. Keeping our industry attuned to the latest thinking on safety, health and environmental knowledge is a major undertaking and a key priority for the Institute of Quarrying (IQ).
Everyone working in the quarrying and mineral products sector has a moral obligation to operate to the highest health and safety standards. The ramifications of ignoring best practice can have a devastating impact on personal wellbeing, as well as affecting commercial success, corporate reputation and shareholder value. Now there is growing recognition that a safe workplace should be a given, not a goal. That means moving from a ‘conscious’ commitment to safety to a culture where safety is ‘unconscious’.