Case Study: The Calico Group
Protecting lone workers acrossmultiple projects and sites
Lone Worker Solutions (LWS) has been contracted by The Calico Group to protect their community-based staff who work by themselves or out-of-sight of colleagues, often in challenging circumstances. Safe Hub will be deployed using SOS Fobs, which Calico deemed the most appropriate device for their staff needs. The system offers state-of-the-art emergency and reactive support.
The Calico Group’s purpose is to improve the quality of life for individuals and the wider community across the region. To do this, they provide accommodation for families and older people, housing for disadvantaged young people, for people with addictions, women’s refuges, supported housing and services for homeless people. In each of the departments, Calico staff work directly with service users who may be vulnerable or who have challenging needs. To ensure the safety and monitor the wellbeing of staff working in the community, Calico wanted to provide team members with an efficient lone worker protection platform.
Competition and assessment
After a competitive tender and trial period, Calico selected LWS, as their partner of choice. Our BS8484:2016 Gold Certified system, Safe Hub, works on a wide range of specialist lone working devices, and mobile and desktop apps. The system monitors staff 24/7 through a direct connection with Mitec, a state-of-the-art Alarm Receiving Centre (ARC), run by Mitie, the strategic outsourcing company.
Health & Safety Representatives Committee
Thomas Berry, Calico’s Health & Safety Manager, chairs the Health & Safety Representatives Committee, a team of 15 volunteers from across The Calico Group. The committee meets bi-monthly to discuss issues around worker safety. This team were tasked with trialing two competitive devices and providing their feedback via a questionnaire. Ease of use and relevant functions were two of the primary areas of investigation.
SOS Fob meets all lone worker requirements
The committee selected SOS Fob as the best device for workers who wanted an easy to locate emergency function. SOS Fob is a lightweight, compact and waterproof lone worker device; it features a prominent emergency button, high-quality 2-way audio, and a motion and shock sensor which can automatically raise an alert if a fall is detected. These functions use GSM (Global System for Mobile communications), which transmits mobile voice and data services. User-friendly and convenient, SOS Fob has an extensive standby time, rechargeable battery, and micro USB charger.
Wide ranging services,
wide ranging roles
The Calico Group places an emphasis on supporting their staff teams just as those teams support the group’s clients. The nature of the work that Calico undertake means that lone workers come from across the Group:
Calico employs a Responsive Repairs team of professionals across the construction trades who take care of the group’s 4,600 properties.
Neighbourhood Officers work directly in the community, responding to tenants’ needs, while Floating Support Officers help vulnerable adults and people experiencing a difficult period in their life.
Bury Rough Sleepers is a rapid response team who work throughout the night to help rough sleepers access a place of safety.
The team at SafeNet provide women’s refuges in three locations across the region, where staff support women who can be escaping from domestic violence.
Acorn Recovery Projects is a team that works with people recovering from alcohol or drug addictions in Stockport, Oldham and Burnley.
The Elizabeth Street Project is a hostel for up to homeless people who have been referred by local councils.
Calico also provides sheltered accommodation in individual flats for clients aged over 55.
This essential and challenging work can present unpredictable scenarios even for highly trained and experienced staff.
Thomas Berry commented that “Our lone workers attend Personal Safety Training, and we take the view that nothing is so important that we can’t take the time to do it safely. But, the very nature of our work means that challenging and unpredictable situations can and do occur. That is when the added security and peace of mind offered by the SOS Fob comes into its own.”