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CSCS have redesigned their website to improve user accessibility

The Construction Skills Certification Scheme is pleased to announce the relaunch of its website – www.cscs.uk.com.

If you have ever applied for a CSCS card you probably visited the website to assist with your application.

CSCS have completely redesigned the website’s layout to make sure the information visitors need is easier to access.

Alan O’Neile, Head of Communications at CSCS said: “With over 50,000 page views a day the website is our number one communications tool. It is essential that we continue to improve the website experience for our card holders, partners and industry stakeholders.”

The website has a number of new features to improve the user experience, including:

–  simpler navigation

– an improved search function

– an improved design for mobile devices.

Alan O’Neile continued: “The redesign now makes it much easier for our existing and prospective card holders to find out about the application process and the range of CSCS cards on offer. Improved navigation, combined with a contemporary look and feel will improve the overall experience for visitors to the site.”

CSCS’s website will continue to be updated on a regular basis and will feature up to date information about any changes to the scheme and the services offered. Visitors can explore the new site and sign up to the CSCS newsletter by visiting www.cscs.uk.com.

CSCS to end exemption to the CITB Health, safety and environment test

Most people in construction are familiar with Construction Skills Certification Scheme (CSCS) cards. It’s the card that provides proof that individuals working on construction sites have the appropriate training and qualifications for the job they do on site.

In most cases applicants are required to achieve a recognised construction related qualification (usually an NVQ or SVQ) as well as pass the Construction Industry Training Board’s (CITB) Health, safety and environment test within the last 2 years.

However, if an applicant has achieved an SVQ or NVQ within the last 2 years they currently do not have to sit the CITB Health, safety and environment test.

CSCS’s Director of Operations has announced plans to end the exemption to passing the CITB Health, safety and environment test.

Gordon Jenkins said: “Accepting the recent completion of an SVQ or NVQ as an exemption to taking the CITB Health, safety and environment test is no longer in step with the wishes of the industry and as such the exemption will be withdrawn.”

From 2nd September 2019 this exemption will be closed. All applicants will be required to pass the CITB Health, safety and environment test regardless of when they obtained their NVQ or SVQ. If applicants have not passed the test, a card will not be issued.

Gordon Jenkins continued “CSCS, together with our 35 partner card schemes, are bound by the requirements of the Industrial Strategy for Construction. The Industrial Strategy is overseen by The Construction Leadership Council (CLC) who, in 2015, announced that cards displaying the CSCS logo should only issue skilled cards to applicants who hold nationally recognised construction qualifications and have passed a separate health and safety element.”

For further information on CSCS’s plans to withdraw the exemption to the CITB Health, safety and environment test please visit www.cscs.uk.com/test-exemption.

Changes to the Health, safety and environment (HS&E) test

CITB are updating the Health, safety and environment test from the 26th June 2019.

Anyone taking the test after the 26th June 2019 should purchase the updated revision materials which will be available from 15 May 2019.

The HS&E test helps to raise the health, safety and environment standards for those working in the construction industry – giving employers the assurance that their workforce, and those they work alongside are well prepared to be safe on site.

The updates CITB are making on the 26th June 2019 are the result of two and half years of working with industry and experts in other fields to ensure that the HS&E test continues to be fair, valid and reliable. As the construction industry changes, the HS&E test is changing with it.

To find out more about the changes visit www.citb.co.uk/HSEtestdev or email HSEtestdev@citb.co.uk

CSCS to withdraw ‘grandfather rights’ cards from 2024

The Construction Skills Certification Scheme (CSCS) is to phase out cards issued under industry accreditation – also known as grandfather rights.

The cards allowed workers to obtain CSCS cards on the strength of an employer’s recommendation rather than the achievement of a recognised qualification.

They were already closed to new applicants in 2010 but those already holding a card were able to renew on the same basis.

Now, after a consultation, CSCS will eventually withdraw the cards altogether.

From 1st January 2020, all cards renewed under Industry Accreditation will expire on 31 December 2024 and CSCS will stop issuing the card from 30 June 2024.

Graham Wren, chief executive at CSCS said: “CSCS cards issued under industry accreditation are the only cards in the CSCS scheme which do not require the cardholder to achieve a recognised qualification. Industry accreditation does not support industry’s desire for a fully qualified workforce and as such it will be withdrawn.”

What each of the 60,000 Industry Accreditation card holders need to do next depends on their occupation and any qualifications they may already hold. Those without qualifications will be required to register for the appropriate qualification for their occupation before their cards expire in 2024.

Wren added: “A lot of work has taken place to ensure those with cards issued under Industry Accreditation will be able to transition to other CSCS cards as simply as possible. We are making this announcement early to ensure card holders and their employers have enough time to make the necessary alternative arrangements.”

The withdrawal of Industry Accreditation will be the final step towards achieving the Construction Leadership Council’s objective of ensuring cards are only issued to those who have achieved, or are in the process of achieving, a nationally recognised construction related qualification.

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