Personal Safety & Lone Working training

Posted in conflict resolution, current affairs, managing violence & aggression, personal safety on January 2nd, 2018 by Chris – Be the first to comment

Catastrophic Consequences of failing to follow health & safety policies/procedures.

Responsible organisations have duty carried out risk assessments and introduce policies and procedures for the safety of their employees and others.

The death of a young adult with autism which occurred in Nottingham and was the subject of criminal prosecution of a care worker highlighted emphasised the importance of employees being risk assessments and the necessary for staff to be familiar with them.

The incident involved a local authority care worker who received a prison sentence for being in breach of section 7 of the Health & Safety at Work act 1974 which imposes the following duty on employees.

An employee may commit an offence if he contravenes the general duties imposed by    ss.7(a) and 7(b) by failing: to take reasonable care for the health and safety of himself and other persons who may be affected by their acts or omissions at work (s.7(a). See link below relating to the relevant legislation below.

The circumstances: An adult with learning difficulties was taken out by a local authority social services care worker for activities which included water sports. The individual participated in the morning activities but did not want to participate in the afternoon sport.

A care plan was in place to address such issues and the care worker was tasked to simply walk the individual around the lake which took about 45 minutes.

Towards the end of this walk the care worker lost sight of the individual. Dog walkers subsequently found this individual in the lake and he was rushed to hospital but pronounced dead on arrival.

The Police, the Health and Safety executive, the Local Authority all carried out an investigation to establish the cause of the death and the findings later presented to the Coroners Court.

The Court findings: The coroner who was a Judge initially concentrated on the organisation responsible for organising the event (Nottingham City Council) and demanded copies of the all the risk assessments, Policies/Procedures and the individuals care plan.

The Judge went through these documents in great detail and sort clarification on numerous issues by the LA’s Health and Safety management.

The care worker was then questioned by the Judge who unlike the LA refused to answer all questioned put to her

The Judge subsequently concluded that the Policies and procedures which had been in place on the day could not be faulted and had these been followed the death of this individual would not have occurred.

The judge recommended that the care worker should be brought before the criminal court and face chargers under the Health & Safety at Work Act.

Normally under criminal law a person is deemed to be innocent until proven guilty however this is not the case under Health & Safety legislation under this legislation a person is guilty unless they can prove their innocence.

By going “No Comment” when questioned by the Judge the defendant had failed to demonstrate a defence.

The care worker was subsequently charged under sec: 7 of the Health & Safety at Work Act and sentenced to four months in prison.

The headlines in the Nottingham evening post read: Jailed for failing to care

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Posted in Uncategorized on December 26th, 2017 by Chris – 1 Comment

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Effective Conflict Management and Emotional Fitness

Posted in Uncategorized on October 24th, 2015 by Chris – Be the first to comment

Dealing with challenging/aggressive individuals.
Effective Conflict Management

Can Conflict management be acquired on a one day training course? This simple answer is No. At best all a one day course can provide you with is a tool box to go out and practice with whenever the opportunity arrives to resolve a challenging confrontational situation.

Emotional Fitness.
To resolve conflict effectively you need to be able to approach the challenge with a positive state of mind. You need to be Emotional fit.

As we develop we acquire habits some will be good habits (positive) whilst others will be bad (negative). This is an area which is often overlooked during many Conflict Resolution training courses

Just think about this for a moment. How effective do you think you would be if you were not feeling good about yourself whilst experiencing a challenging confrontation. Equally how effective would you be if you did not feel good about the other person.
To deal effectively with challenging behaviour you need the following.

• Knowledge: E.g. .the knowledge to identify triggers in self and others
• Skill: The ability to deal with these triggers in self and others.
• Desire: The willingness to change any bad habits.

Without the desire nothing will change and the individual will get what they have always got when engaged in a confrontational situation.

This element of emotional fitness is often overlooked in most Conflict Resolution training courses (even in the nationally accredited competency tested training courses). This I find surprising when you consider the resent research carried out by NICE identified that over 67% of assaults on NHS staff committed by patients were a direct result of the initial conflict being badly addressed by their own staff.

Logically then if the issue of emotional fitness is not addressed during any Conflict Resolution training then only 33% of the training will be effective.

An emotionally unfit person is much more likely to re-act in a negative way rather than to respond in a positive way. The former is a reaction which comes from our reptile brain whilst the latter is a reaction which stems from our intelligent brain.

An individual who is efficient at handling conflict will always be engaging their intelligent brain, and thus able to access their own “tool box”

In my subsequent articles I will be looking more closely at Emotional Unfitness, how to identify this in self and other and control measures to address this issue.

We will also have a look at the tool that can be acquired through good Conflict
Management training to effective handle an escalating conflict situation.

Travel Safe Personal Safety Advice from Brooks Jordan Training

Posted in current affairs, personal safety, street survival tips, Uncategorized on February 4th, 2014 by Chris – 2 Comments

Last time we wrote about staying safe when travelling by car this post we’ll focus on the do’s and don’ts of taking taxis.

Most people will only take a taxi when for some reason they can’t use another form of transport either because it’s not convenient for public transport or having had a drink, driving would be illegal and probably unsafe as well.

So let’s think about the combination of factors which can add to the risk of taking a taxi –

  • You’ve had a drink and so may not be as clear or focussed as you would be when sober
  • It’s dark, it may also be raining and hence passers-by are less likely to observe you, the vehicle you get in to and certainly not the taxi driver.
  • You’re getting in to closed box that can take you pretty much anywhere with a complete stranger.

All of this adds up to a perfect storm of risk for the unprepared or the unwary.
So how can you make taking a taxi safer?

  • The best protection you can have is to travel with friends – remember the old adage ‘safety in numbers’. Not only does this reduce the cost it’s unlikely a lone driver will try anything with a group of you.
  • Speak to your Student Union. Usually they can recommend a cab firm or may have an agreement with a local firm to take student’s home even if they have run out of cash (more on this later).
  • Use the recommended firm and book your taxi well ahead of time. Ask who will be collecting you and give a name to the firm so you know it really is your driver when the cab turns up.
  • Before you get in ask who they have come to collect – check it is your cab.
  • Ask the driver for his details

Get on your phone (or pretend to) and ring someone – your conversation goes like this –

You – ‘Hi Dad, (Dave). Yes I’m just leaving now, yes of course it’s a proper firm – its (give name of firm).

Pause to listen – imagine Dave (or your Dad) asking you for the name of the driver.

You – ‘The driver?’  Turn to the driver.  ‘Sorry it’s my Dad (boyfriend) he wants to know your name and number’.

At this point the driver should give you his name.

You – ‘The driver’s name is Pete and his number is KH54DEY.  Yes I’ll be about 15 minutes.’

Turning to the taxi driver ‘Pete I’m really sorry about that – my Dad (Dave) does the doors and he’s just over protective’.

Now – instead of thinking you’re an easy victim in a locked moving box, your driver thinks there’s someone at your destination expecting you to arrive within 15 minutes and that person has all the details they will need to alert the Police if you don’t turn up at the appointed time.

So you’ve run out of money and don’t have the fare to get home – now what do you do?
Sheffield Hallam Union have a great scheme. With one of their approved firms you can hand over your Student Union card in lieu of payment. The next day the taxi driver takes the card to the Union who pay your fare. You get a message from the Union to come in to collect your card and pay what is owed in return for your card. Maybe your Union has a similar scheme – why not call in and find out.

Want to know more about Personal Safety courses for Students from Brooks Jordan? Speak to us on 01623 407793 or visit our website at for more safety tips or to book training.


Follow Brooks Jordan on Twitter for the next Travel Safe installment on taking public transport.

Travel Safe Advice from Brooks Jordan Training

Posted in personal safety on January 23rd, 2014 by Chris – 2 Comments

Although nights are now getting lighter there are still a few weeks yet before we’re into spring  so with this in mind we thought it a good time to remind readers of ways to maintain their personal safety when out and about.

Plan your journey – when you leave for an evening out think about how you get home again – are you using your own car, a taxi, public transport or will you be walking?

Travelling by Car

While travelling by car is likely to be the safest mode of transport it is not without risk.  Consider the following –

  • Where you park your car is where you will later retrieve it from – try to avoid leaving it in badly lit areas, or next to anything that might provide someone a hiding place.
  • Look out for broken glass on the side of the road – a sure sign that criminals are operating undisturbed – maybe when you get back to your car your windows may have been broken – or worse still someone could be lying in wait for you.
  • When you approach your car observe it from a distance – check that no one is near it – THINK – the person trying to get in to the car next to yours – are they really having problems with their keys or could they be waiting for the sound of your car doors opening so they can jump in beside you?
  • Have your keys ready – if you have central locking/unlocking make sure you only activate the button when you are close to your car and ready to jump in – operate it when you are metres away from your vehicle and you advertise the fact that this is your car and you have the keys.
  • When you get into your car – do you always lock your doors straight away?  You should – and should also drive with your doors locked in slow moving traffic – unlock them when you get out on to the open road when your speed increases.

So you are unfortunate – someone has jumped into the passenger seat – what will you do to get him out and get home safely?  How would you handle this risk?

Follow Brooks Jordan on Twitter for the next Travel Safe instalment on taking taxis.

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Cyber bullying of young people on the rise

Posted in personal safety on August 28th, 2013 by Chris – Be the first to comment

Bullying is no longer something that only happens face to face.  In the past, bullying may have happened at school, in the playground or in local social clubs, now it can happen anywhere.  Due to the increased use of mobile phones, email, social networks and other chat based websites cyber bullying has risen dramatically as targets become more accessible.  Cyber bullying can happen 24 hours a day, 365 days per year.

Cyber bullying happens when one or more individuals tease, threaten, harass or embarrass another person through use of technology – often allowing the bully to remain anonymous.  The technology itself is of no danger – rather it is down to the use the technology is put to and often it is other children who partake in these cruel and vindictive acts. Escaping from cyber bullying can be hard due to the 24/7 nature of the internet and victims can be left feeling very isolated, distressed, lonely and vulnerable.

Top Tips for Parents – How to identify if your child is a victim of cyber bullying

You may have noticed that your normally happy vibrant child has become withdrawn and moody but refuses to talk to you about what is bothering them.  Significant increases in messages to their mobile phone may also be an indicator that they are being victimised by cyber bullies. So it is important that you –

  • Talk to your child about responsible online behaviour
  • Let your child know that if anything online bothers them, makes them feel upset or worried they can talk to you about it.
  • It is extremely important to remind your child that once a comment or image is posted or a message sent online you cannot take it back.
  • Teenagers need to consider the impact that anything they do or say on line may have on their future career.


Top Tips for Victims


  • You shouldn’t have to face bullying or cyber bullying alone – talk to someone you know and trust such as a parent, carer or teacher.  They can help you overcome bullying and be there to listen to you as well as report anything serious.
  • It is extremely important to talk things though with someone – it can make you feel less isolated, more confident and put you back in control of the situation.
  • Keep a copy of any abusive messages that you receive and record the send date/time.
  • Keeping records can help the Police investigate if a bully’s activities overstep the line – particularly if the bullying has racial or sexual harassment connotations.
  • Never reply to messages that you receive. It will simply encourage the bullies and result in further upset.


Have your say – should the police commit more resources to investigating cyber bullying or sexual/racial harassment on line or do they already have too much work?

Personal safety tips for students

Posted in personal safety on August 16th, 2013 by Chris – Be the first to comment

With one third of students estimated to become victims of crime during their academic career and 20 per cent of student robberies occurring in the first six weeks of the academic year – what is your University doing to make you safer? 

In recent weeks the media has been splatted with headlines boasting of a reduction in crime in the UK.  Proud crime statistics showed that overall crime has fallen by 5% since 2011 (give or take a per cent or two depending upon which newspaper you read) but even with crime rates dropping – becoming a victim of crime can really take the gloss off student life.  So what is your University doing to make you safer and what can you do to avoid becoming a crime statistic?

Check if your university providing free Street Survival Skills training – some do.   But even if your establishment isn’t offering training – there are still things you can do to make yourself safer.

Check out our five top tips for helping you ‘stay safe and party on’

Get to know your new environment:

  • Get to know where the “No Go” areas are.
  • Ask ‘established’ students where they are and avoid these suburbs especially when alone.

Find out about the crime trends in your new city:

These will vary from city to city across the UK, Europe and the rest of the world.  How do you find out about crime trends in your new city?

  • Ask those who’ve been there for a while what they are concerned about;
  • In the UK you can access the website to check crimes in your locality.
  • Observe how the locals dress / behave and copy them  to blend in – do people carry their backpack’s on their backs or, more like a baby carrier, in front of their body?  THINK – why are they doing this?

3.    How secure is your new flat?

Ask your landlord if your flat or block has had any break ins – in the UK they have a duty to disclose this information – if you ask –

  • Check the website and look at the ‘crime map’ to find out what crimes have occurred in your locality – is your street one named on the crime map?  Find out why.
  • Do what you can to make your place more secure by using extra security and get good insurance.
  • Get advice from your local neighbourhood crime team;
  • Make sure windows and doors are closed & locked before you go out.

 4.    Out and about and partying – avoid the risk of getting your drinks spiked by:

Drinking from a bottle rather than a glass – it is harder for someone to drop something into a bottle than a glass.  Better yet get a specially designed stopper that you can insert a straw in to but which closes off the neck of the bottle.

  • Don’t leave your drinks unattended.
  • Plan ahead – make sure someone knows where you are going, who you are meeting and when you expect to return.
  • Go out as a group – come back as a group – look out for your mates.
  • Always plan how you are going to get home and book a taxi before you leave home using a cab firm recommended by your University.

5.       Travel Safety

 If you have a car think carefully about where you will park it and what you leave in it – is it obvious it’s a woman’s car?  You might want to leave a motorbike magazine in the car or something similar to make it less obvious.

  • Think about the risks you face when getting in to a taxi – if you just flag a taxi down in the street who else knows where you are?   THINK – this the perfect place to carry out a crime against you.
  • And after a great night out make sure you have enough money to get home again!

 For more personal safety tips sign up to our newsletter or contact Julie for details of your nearest street survival skills training event.

Tel: 01623 407793 

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With crime rates falling, is personal safety still an issue?

Posted in personal safety on August 9th, 2013 by Chris – Be the first to comment

Incidents of violent crime have dropped dramatically in the UK – so do we still need to be concerned about our Personal Safety?


Following the recent Home Office report, information provided showed that the recorded crime rate has fallen by 38% since 2002, the UK government claim this is down to good policing and comes in spite of staffing reductions of up to 20% across the UK.


Most striking perhaps is the fact that this decline has occurred across so many categories of crime. The only category to show a significant increase is theft from the person/fraud which rose by 8% to 107,471 recorded offences.  It is worth noting that incidents of violent crime have also dropped in the USA and many European countries so this trend is not unique to the UK.


Certainly we know there are factors which can reduce crime – car manufacturers have made ‘hot wiring’ cars a thing of the past; improved home security makes burglary much more difficult and let’s not forget the ‘target hardening’ benefits of personal safety training.


Many employers now see Personal Safety & Conflict Resolution training as a core part of their induction programmes particularly for those who are lone workers employed in challenging or high risk roles.  And while employers do have a duty to consider the personal safety of their staff it may surprise you to hear that statistically lone workers are not the group most at risk.


When we ask delegates ‘Statistically which group in society do you think is most at risk from assault?’  Invariably the response will be lone workers or the elderly and elderly women in particular.   While elderly people are vulnerable they are more commonly the victims of ‘distraction burglaries’ not street crime. (For more on this topic or to view our next blog post, sign up on our homepage)


It may surprise you to learn that statistically the most vulnerable age group is 16-24 year olds and young men are more liable to be victims of assault than young women.  


But becoming a victim of crime is not inevitable.  Criminals look for easy targets and if they think attacking you will be too much trouble or sense that you could identify them, they will abort and look for an easier target.  Personal safety training can make a lot of difference to a young person’s risk profile – often after delivering training to students, adults present comment that they wish there had been similar training when they were younger – they might have avoided whatever criminal activity they became prey to when they first started college.  Indeed there is nothing more likely to take the shine off your first term at university than becoming the victim of crime.

If you would like to hear more about our short course on Street Survival Skills for young people please give Brooks Jordan a call on 01623 407793 and ask for Julie.


So what do you think?  Are the Police getting better at detecting crime?  Are more criminals going straight or might there be another explanation?  Could it be that we are finally wising up to crime?

Tweet your thoughts to @brooksjordants

Effective Conflict Resolution training

Posted in conflict resolution on June 13th, 2012 by Chris – Be the first to comment

Active Learning

Ever wondered why after sending staff on costly training they come back to work and after a few days they’ve got back in to the same habits the training was designed to break?

This can happen for a number of reasons but is usually because the training has failed to ‘actively’ involve them in learning. This is not to say that the tutor lacked expertise or subject knowledge, nor even that the delegate wasn’t enthused by what they heard, but all too often corporate training is presented in the form of a lecture, by a tutor presenting from the front of the room using power point – in sessions that may be up to 90 minutes duration without a break.

It’s not called ‘death by power point’ for nothing!

What you may not know is that the adult human concentration span is limited to between twelve and twenty minutes and for children this is even shorter. By forty minutes in, the learner has taken just about as much as they can before they begin to lose their ability to concentrate and everything else that follows washes over them. This is known as passive learning.

So how do expert tutors manage this effect?

Active learning is currently a hot topic with educationalists. Ways of designing training using active learning methods are of particular interest to researchers seeking ways to engage and effectively deliver education to school children. And for anyone buying corporate training there is no reason why this research shouldn’t deliver benefits for you as well.

‘Research shows that active learning is much better recalled, enjoyed and understood. Active methods require us to ‘make our own meaning’, that is, develop our own conceptualisations of what we are learning. During this process we physically make neural connections in our brain, the process we call learning. Passive methods such as listening do not require us to make these neural connections or conceptualisations’. Geoff Petty – Teaching Today

From this research educators found that by changing the pace of delivery – by giving learners a task to complete which uses the skill or knowledge taught, that skill or knowledge is ‘embedded’ more efficiently with the learner. The learner gets an opportunity to practice what they have been taught; the tutor observes learners using their new found skill or knowledge and checks to make sure that they have understood/mastered what was presented, correcting any misconceptions. Best of all concentration levels don’t flag as much as they would in a lecture. By using the skills/knowledge at the time of training – when learning is revisited in the workplace, recall is more efficient and hence you get a better result for your training budget. So next time you think about booking training, try asking what sort of active learning methods the provider uses to embed learning!

For more information on Conflict Resolution training please visit

Effective training

Discover why Anger Management is all the Rage

Posted in conflict resolution, managing violence & aggression on March 25th, 2012 by Chris – Be the first to comment

It’ no surprise that with the current economic climate that people are becoming more and more angry.

Let’s face it we all have a right to be angry at the moment.

Who is not angry with the banks for bringing the world economy to its knees? with our Local Authorities cutting services, and of course we have the expenses scandal and the newspapers taping our phones and invading our privacy.

People have every right to be angry but what they don’t have is a right to be hostile and abusive towards others.

Anger in the workplace:

With the current government cut backs many employees are experiencing increased workloads, are having extra duties placed upon them, their pay frozen or cut all of which can lead to increased stress levels.

Psychologists have identified three different types of personality

Type A: These individuals are aggressive, impatient, competitive, hit the roof if they have to stand in a queue or some-one has the audacity to be a few minutes late for a meeting with them.

These individuals appear to be completely stressed out and rushing around but not really getting very far.

Who remembers the actor John Cleese’s in Fawlty Towers demonstrating a perfect example of the above

Type B: These individuals are the total opposite to the above as they always appear to be calm and relaxed even in a crisis they are able to rationalise the situation and make those around them feel completely at ease.

Again going back to the TV Bobby Ewan in the famous sit com Dallas typified the type 2

constantly staying calm and rational whist battling with his type A brother JR always, Bobby always trying to do what is right and fair for every-one and rarely getting emotional.

Type C: Tend to bottle up their emotions and if challenged will usually total deny that there is anything wrong.

This type is often the most difficult to deal with as they can explode on you without warning.

In conflict resolution training we talk about the pre-attack triggers, Warning & Danger signs and the importance of identifying and responding appropriately to these signals to diffuse and prevent escalation.

Type C’s are often experts at hiding their emotions and don’t need to be triggered as they are already there waiting to move onto the next stage of the assault cycle escalation in many cases this is compounded by the fact that the person they eventually explode on is not the person they are angry with but some innocent bystander who was just in the wrong place at the wrong time.

How many times have you watched the news on the television about some tragedy involving some-one going on a killing spree shooting neighbours, relatives, colleagues, or total strangers and you hear people who knew them being interviewed saying things like they were perfect neighbours, friends or colleagues very quiet, kept themselves to themselves etc.

Examples of the above include the Hungerford disaster (Michael Ryan), Dunblane Massacre: (Thomas Hamilton), Kimbra Taxi driver (Derrick Bird) and Raoul Moat who taunted Northumberland police prior to taking his own life.

The perfect solution for the workplace is to only employ type B’s if you want to have a safe and enjoyable place to work, but reality is not like that.

I suspect most people reading this like myself have worked with both type A’s & type C’s

These individuals if not checked are a burden to both others and themselves.

Attending a good Conflict Resolution training course will help staff identify types A & C.

Conflict resolution training will also give staff the necessary tool kit they need to identify the triggers, the Warning & Danger signs enabling them to apply the appropriate diffusion strategies.

Types A & C could also benefit from conflict resolution training and benefit further by attending a Stress Management training course

Brooks Jordan Training Services training provide training on both Conflict Resolution, Stress Management and a host of Corporate Management training programmes.

For more information please visit our web site