Health and safety manifesto aims to improve UK standards
26 April 2012
Posted by John Bull
More still needs to be done in the UK to tackle health and safety failings and prevent deaths and injuries from occurring.
This is the claim made by the British Safety Council, which has unveiled its new manifesto 'Working Well', aimed at ensuring regulation protects people while also reducing the burden of unnecessary rules on businesses.
According to the organization, some people perceive the current system as driving risk aversion, hampering enterprises and undermining collective responsibility.
It presented the manifesto in the House of Commons at an event hosted by MP Andy Slaughter and Andy Botha, the group's Chief Executive, stated: "Health and safety, when properly and sensibly managed, produces immense business, economic and social benefits."
The council highlighted the 26,000 major injuries that occurred in Britain during 2010-11 and the 2.2 million workers killed around the world annually. It also pointed to the estimated £22 billion cost to the UK each year of work-related illness and injury, which equates to four per cent of total gross domestic product.
Outlining a series of steps to bring together all relevant parties to improve health and safety standards in the UK, the manifesto follows a recent change to reporting regulations that the Health and Safety Executive claims has reduced paperwork in this area by almost one-third (30 per cent).
The agency stated extending the period within which employers do not have to report workplace injuries to those that keep workers away from their jobs to seven or fewer days will ease the burden of administration on businesses. The previous rules applied to all incidents requiring more than three days off.
Changes the Reporting of Injuries, Diseases and Dangerous Occurrences Regulations 1995 came into force this month and are expected to result in 30,000 fewer reports per year, with bosses provided with a longer period - from ten to 15 days - to report incidents.