May 1st, 2018
OiRA tools for the Live Performance Sector

Going beyond common sense in health and safety

If you are working in the live performance sector you will have encountered situations where health and safety issues for staff and performers were raised. The live performance sector encompasses artistic productions and workplaces with a diversity of elements in relation to occupational health and safety. When one considers the technical elements in relation to the set - rigging and stage, the work being conducted above or below the stage or in scenery workshops, the special elements or stunts and the artistic performance activities on the stage, the chemical and hazardous substances that may be used in special effects, frequent high noise levels, touring, the presence of an audience - it's clear that a specific risk assessment has to be put in place.

The OiRA tools for the live performance sector are a roadmap for SMEs (small and medium enterprises) in the sector to address thesis challenges, help companies and venues to consider implementing efficient health and safety policies adopting ad hoc measures and approaches, encourage them to consider that all aspects of their work require safety management to protect those who work in this busy and varying environment.

What exactly are the OiRA tools for the Live Performance sector?

OiRA stands for Online Interactive Risk Assessment:  it is a free web-based tool that allows a health and safety assessment of a workplace. The software has been developed by the European Agency for Safety and Health at Work to help sectoral social partners (employers and employees organisations) and national authorities (ministries, labour inspectorates, OSH institutes, etc.) to produce sector-specific risk assessment tools targeting small businesses. 

The OiRA tools for the live performance sector were created through the European Social Partners in the Live Performance sector: Pearle*-Live Performance Europe, representing employers associations in Europe, and EAEA - European Arts and Entertainment Alliance representing the workers' associations. EAEA is the sectoral alliance bringing together the International Federation of Actors (FIA), the International Federation of Musicians (FIM) and UNI-MEI, Global Union for Media and Entertainment.  

It should be underlined that the country does not address country-specific legislation, but refers to European legislation. The aim of the social partners is to promote the national level of development in the field of the live performance sector, which can be improved to the needs of the sector in every country and can also be helpful to touring productions.

The tools can be used to assess health and safety-related risks that may exist in relation to artistic production or in the workplace. The tools are structured in independent modules so that they can not be skipped. The user is asked to identify risks related to general occupational health and safety, internship-related operations, special considerations for performers, particular areas inside the venue, special effects, etc., and evaluate them. Furthermore, the tool provides a number of suggested means for controlling the assessed risks. You can finally create your own venue or production-specific action plan, assign tasks and propose timelines and budget implications for addressing the risks!

 

There is no need for specific preparation before starting to use the tools. However, since health and safety is a shared responsibility within an organisation, you need to take care of the risk assessment, how you will be involved in the process, etc.

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