Simplify health and safety laws, don't abolish them, says Prospect


Simplify health and safety laws, don't abolish them, says Prospect

UK health and safety legislation is "neither excessive nor damaging to innovation ", Prospect has told an independent report into health and safety laws commissioned by the government.

Chaired by Professor Ragnar Löfstedt, the review is intended to suggest proposals that would simplify legislation and ease the health and safety burden on businesses.

On behalf of the union's health and safety representatives as well as 1,500 inspectors and other specialists employed by the Health and Safety Executive, Prospect said it was not regulation but "non-compliance and poor interpretation of the rules" that should be the government's greatest concern.

The union said that while it backed an evidence-based approach, it was sceptical whether the inquiry's finding would carry any weight given the wider deregulatory agenda being pursued by government.

Prospect's deputy general secretary Mike Clancy said: "This latest review comes hot on the heels of Lord Young's report into health and safety laws, which proved to be a missed opportunity for genuine measures to tackle the negative media image of health and safety."

Clancy added that the government's sudden cull of automatic health and safety workplace inspections this spring was "an irresponsible tactic that is designed solely to meet the cuts targets set by the comprehensive spending review".

Löfstedt is currently examining all the submissions received in his call for evidence, and is due to report back at the end of October.

Click here for more information about the union's response to the Löfstedt review or here to read the submission in full.