New Royal Mail Group Dog Attack Reporting ProcessHealth & Safety July 25 2019
Dog attacks continue to be the single highest accident and injury type in Royal Mail and result in many CWU members suffering significant injuries which in the most serious of cases can be life changing.
Detailed discussions have been taking place between the CWU Health, Safety & Environment Department and the Royal Mail Safety, Legal and Security teams to improve how dog attacks are reported, investigated and evidence is gathered to enable criminal investigations to become more timely and effective and to facilitate the prosecutions, where appropriate, of irresponsible dog owners and/or other appropriate remedial actions following attacks.
All dog attack reports will now be made to the Security Helpdesk who will capture the information and record the details in their ‘SHEILD’ (Security Hub Investigation Event Logging Directory) database system before allocating the incident to the investigation team for a swifter response, both in offering support and taking the matter forward. This approach will ensure that accurate and timely information is captured for all dog attacks, on any RMG employees, while allocating the right resource to help build stronger, better evidenced prosecution cases.
This process will far more effectively provide Royal Mail Security Investigators and Lawyers with prompt notice of all dog attacks to enable them to firstly start gathering evidence, secondly make contact with the Police force involved in order to set up liaison on cases and to press them and the Crown Prosecution Services to prosecute irresponsible owners where appropriate and to ensure cases are not either dropped or are dealt with inappropriately, for example via a ‘community resolution’ or simple ‘Police warning’.
Thirdly, finally and perhaps most importantly, this new process will ensure that Royal Mail’s lawyers can take out ‘Private Prosecutions’ against irresponsible dog owners, if need be, in cases where the Police or Crown Prosecution Service fail to prosecute for what RMG and CWU consider unacceptable reasons. To date, since the Health, Safety & Environment Department secured agreement with Royal Mail Group to take out private prosecutions, approximately 25 successful prosecutions of dog owners, securing criminal convictions, have taken place and more are currently proceeding through the courts.
The intelligence this approach provides will also enable the identification of high areas of risk and support the wider business approach of raising awareness with the public.
It will also provide evidence to support further opportunities to influence changes in the current legislation and enforcement which, going forward, we hope will safeguard and support members and reduce the number of these incidents.
As part of this year’s 2019 National RMG/CWU ‘Joint’ Dog Awareness Week we have agreed that this month, the revised dog attack reporting process will be launched and the new process requires members who are dog attack victims and managers to follow some simple actions. This new process will not change the way we report or investigate incidents but will add an addition to the current process. From this month, managers must call the ‘Security Helpdesk’ to report all dog attacks. The ‘Security Helpdesk’ will obtain information allowing them to record it into their ‘SHEILD’ database system. Finally, all dog attacks must be recorded into the USO (Universal Service Obligation) SharePoint site.
To simplify and remove duplication the need for managers to complete the current ‘DART’ form and ‘DARP’ process are withdrawn forthwith as Security will be holding all the required information in their ‘SHIELD’ system.
Important Note: All injuries from dog attacks still need an ERICA report form entry to be completed and submitted. Only the DART report form is now withdrawn and replaced by the new SHEILD reporting process.
The new dog attack reporting process is attached for your information and attention along with a RMG/CWU ‘Joint Statement’.
If you require any further information on these changes please contact your RMG SHE Advisor/Business Partner.