Understanding Reasonable Force

Failure To Be Competent In What You Train, Manage and Inspect Makes You Professionally Negligent

As you may have seen we will be launching our New and Updated ‘Understanding Reasonable Force Course very soon now that will plug a knowledge-gap in the industry.

The problem is that currently there are trainers, managers and inspectors in various industry sectors who are either expected to train, manage, provide guidance on, investigate and even discipline staff who use physical force in the workplace.

Yet a very high percentage of these people have not received any competent training or qualifications in that specific area of expertise.

And if you are one of these people I have a solution for you here: https://urf.nfps.info/urf

The reason this solution is important is because if you are (legally) unqualified and not competent that leaves you and/or your employer open to a legal challenge if a wrong assumption was made that led to a decision to discipline or terminate someone’s employment or to charge them with a crime.

That can end up with the employer facing an employment tribunal or being sued: because someone who has had their rights infringed has “an enforceable right to compensation” under the law.

Worse still, incorrect information, advice, guidance and instruction can lead to an increased risk to staff and the population they serve and if that led to a serious injury or death then you and/or your employer and/or the manager/director responsible can be prosecuted under Health & Safety legislation and in the case of a death, under the Corporate Manslaughter and Corporate Homicide Act and the Human Rights Act.

This is also known as ‘professional negligence’.

Professional Negligence

Professional negligence occurs when a person fails to perform his/her responsibilities to the level required of a reasonably competent person in their profession.

Professional negligence claims in the UK are rising and have been for some time now and it is thought that the reason for this is largely due to the fact that work being carried out by professionals is more complex, and clients are sometimes being forced to follow the training, advice and recommendations they receive, in some cases for fear of discipline or sanctions imposed.

In addition, the use of reasonable force is actually quite a complex area to understand, yet many trainers, managers and inspectors either get no training in this area or do little or no cpd in this area.

So How Does Professional Negligence Occur?

Well, in order to bring a claim in professional negligence, you will need to establish four key elements:

1. Duty of care – professionals normally owe a duty of care to their clients. A trainer owes a duty of care to those they train. A manager owes a duty of care to the staff he or she manages, and an inspector owes a duty of care to the organisation’s they inspect including the staff and the service users.

2. Breach of duty – the professional must have fallen below the standards of a reasonably competent professional, having regard to the usual standards of that particular profession. For example, with regards to the use of physical force, if a trainer, manager or inspector is expected to train, advise, make recommendation and (in some cases) discipline and terminate a person’s employment then they must be competent to make such decision. If not, then they will have fallen below the standards of a reasonably competent person for that aspect of their professional role.

3. Causation – the loss must have been caused by the negligence. The relevant test here is whether the loss would still have been incurred ‘but for’ the professional’s negligence? So let’s say a trainer, manager or inspector makes a statement that certain physical restraint or defensive techniques cannot be used because in that person’s opinion they are ‘banned’ or ‘against the law’ or breach a regulatory standard (which I have heard many times before) and in fear of being disciplined or sanctioned or receiving a badly graded inspection report the technique is removed (under duress) and a harm or death occurs which would not have occurred had the technique been kept in. That would give cause to a claim against the trainer, manager or inspector for professional negligence.

4. Loss – the basic principle here is to put the claimant back into the position he/she would have been in had the professional not been negligent. So, a member of staff who is disciplined and possibly subsequently had their employment terminated can pursue costs for wrongful dismissal which can include: loss of income, stress, pain and suffering, loss of chance and opportunity, etc. A care home or children’s home that receives a bad inspection report and loses business as a result on the basis of an incompetent inspectors’ decision can pursue that inspector and the inspectorate for damages on the grounds of professional negligence. And what about the manager or trainer who gives incorrect and incompetent advice about reasonable force. That makes their organisation directly liable.

This is Why This Course is So Important

This online course will make you more competent than any other course of this kind.

To find out how, visit this web-page – https://urf.nfps.info/urf

The Cost of The URF Course and a Bit More Info

I just thought I’d give you a quick update on the course in terms of cost etc.

We are going to launch this at a cost of £275 + Vat and I believe that the amount and quality of the content is worth 10X that investment.

It also provides excellent CPD evidence for you too.

This is NOT a Risk Assessment Course (But it Does Compliment It)

There has been a bit of confusion as to whether the BTEC Unit Certificate offered with this course is the same as the NFPS Level 3 Risk Assessment Award Certificate so let me clear that up for you right now by saying that it is not the same.

The BTEC Level 3 Unit Certificate in Risk Management & Assessment is nothing to do with risk assessments.

This course is about understanding and managing the risks associated with the use of force and to do that it helps you understand the various risk factors associated with the use of force.

To do that the BTEC Level 3 Unit Certificate covers all of the relevant law in relation to the use of force, including the Human Rights Act, with input from leading lawyers and a QC.

It also covers Health & Safety legislation and how that relates to the use of force from a training and operational perspective with recorded video footage of a highly respected Health & Safety professional who I have worked and collaborated with for many years on use of force issues.

There is a whole section on Positional Asphyxia based on the research done by Dr. John Parkes which is actually full video footage of him delivering a session on this at one of our recent Conferences.

There is also input from Dr. Tony Bleetman on some of the medical issues relating to medical reviews of training systems.

This course will of course compliment the NFPS Level 3 Risk Assessment Award Course, but it is a completely different course.

I hope that helps.

To express your interest in this course go to – https://urf.nfps.info/urf

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