CSCS Green Card Changes – Labourer CSCS Cards

A new accreditation scheme for UK construction workers came into operation on the 1st July 2014. The new CSCS (Construction Skills Certification Scheme) labouring card is an entry-level green card only applicable to those employed in labouring occupations, and replaces the former CSO (Construction Site Operative) green card which is thus no longer available.

Background to the new change

Ever since 2001 when the construction industry was confronted over its safety record, there has been widespread disquiet concerning the ‘misuse’ of green cards. Insiders believe there was a misguided scramble to achieve a ‘100 percent carded workforce’ very quickly by relaxing some important core requirements.

Commenting on the previous system, CSCS chief executive Graham Wren said: ‘To get a carded workforce quickly, what CSCS did was launch the green card, which was an easy card to get because all you needed was an employer reference and a health and safety test. We need to get back to the principle of 100 percent competent and qualified, not 100 percent carded.’

Mr Wren also pointed out that a significant proportion of the UK’s 600,000 old-style green card holders are currently carrying the wrong card for the job they are employed to do.

New requirements

The purpose of the new CSCS green card scheme is to provide the construction industry with a simple means of confirming site workers are who they say they are they have the appropriate qualifications and training.

All too often under previous arrangements, site workers in skilled occupations just applied for the old CSO green card claiming to be undertaking ‘labouring duties only’ as the quickest way to secure access to construction sites, making it hard for contractors to rely on CSCS cards alone as confirmation that site workers were properly trained and certified to work safely and effectively on site.

The new regulations can be summarised as follows:

Labourers

You must work in a labouring occupation to be eligible for a new green labourer card. You must also demonstrate you have gained a QCF/SCQF Level 1 Health and Safety in a Construction Environment Award, or else have followed a One day Site Safety Plus Health and Safety Awareness course. In addition, you must also have passed the CITB Operatives Health, Safety and Environment test within the two years prior to making your application for the new green card.

Employers

From 01/07/2014 the appropriate CSCS card depends on the job individuals perform on site and/or their qualifications paperwork. When applying for cards on behalf of your non-labouring workers search the CSCS cardfinder to select the correct card.

For your labourers, you can request a new Labourer green card. They must also prove they have gained a QCF/SCQF Level 1 Health and Safety in a Construction Environment Award, or else have attended a One day Site Safety Plus Health and Safety Awareness course. In addition, they must also have passed the CITB Operatives Health, Safety and Environment test within the two years prior to the application for the new green card.

Current CSO green card holders

Your present green card covers you until it expires. Then, if you are in a non-labouring occupation, search the CSCS cardfinder to select the correct card – there is also more information on the CSCS site about your options.

If you are a labourer, you can request a new Labourer green card, and must also prove you have gained a QCF/SCQF Level 1 Health and Safety in a Construction Environment Award, or else have followed a One day Site Safety Plus Health and Safety Awareness course.

In addition, you must also have passed the CITB Operatives Health, Safety and Environment test within the two years prior to making your application for the new green card.

Category: CSCS Information

Comments (1)

  1. den says:

    Does anyone no the answer to my question my green card is about to expire but I have a nvq level 1 construction site operative on the back of my card do i still have to do a nvq after i have passed my green card test.

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