Hello all, I hope you are well and have been safe so far this week!
I have a little confession to make before we go on. I must stress this is purely from my opinion and mine only, not opinions from my other staff here at Lighthouse. So here goes:
I was embarrassed to be and work in Health & Safety. There I said it, happy now? Glad I have got that off my chest.
Now to explain (the hard part)… The key word in that sentence was, ‘WAS’.
I left an important role in the British Army 5 years ago and when I used to tell people what I did for a living they were instantly amazed and interested (not all but most). Many took time out their day to talk to me, some bought me drinks when they learnt I spent 5 months in Afghanistan. So it was always nice to brag (I suppose its bragging, hopefully it was because I was actually proud of my achievements) and receive a nice comment back.
This all changed however when I entered Health & Safety. Even last week at a family get together, a relative, who I had not spoken to for many years asked me what I do now I have left the Army. I finally told him what I do, to which we showed utter disgust and walked off. Now, I am not one for sympathy but why did I deserve that? It’s the same response I get from people who don’t know who I am and it is very rude!
But imagine this – Hello my name is Harry I am in the Army “oh wow, you’re amazing, have you ever killed anyone?” (always got asked that)
Now imagine this – Hello my name is Harry I work in H&S “oh, well shame you’re now a jobs worth”
Ironically one job was predominantly in the business of taking lives and one is predominantly in the business of SAVING lives and I get called a jobs worth for the one that SAVES lives!!!!
How is that possible?
This normal response of negativity caused me to hide my shame of being a H&S professional, until now!
You know what, even though people do not fully appreciate my work, I do. It does help people; it saves people on a daily basis by the millions. Really it does, cars you drive, roads you drive on, theatres you visit, sport events you attend even charity organised run days. All of those and a whole lot more have been improved for your health and safety every year, and it will continue.
I have shaken the shackles of shame and have now burst out in immense pride for my job. I am glad to get that abuse from people for my trade. WE are proud at Lighthouse to service people for their safety. We cannot measure how many lives we have saved over the years nor can we say how much we have exactly improved, but we can say and will say is that we are proud to have tried.
I save lives, what do you do?