We use cookies to give you the best experience possible. By continuing we’ll assume you’re on board with our cookie policy

Health & Safety Law Essay Sample

essay
The whole doc is available only for registered users OPEN DOC

Get Full Essay

Get access to this section to get all help you need with your essay and educational issues.

Get Access

Health & Safety Law Essay Sample

The purpose of this report is to answer the question “To what extent has the development of effective Health & Safety Legislation in the United Kingdom been hindered by economic & commercial factors?”

This will be achieved through:

A. Investigation of existing literature on the subject paying particular attention to:

1. Lord Young’s report “Common Sense, Common Safety”. 2. The Loftstedt’ Report
3. Associated Progress Reports & Publications
4. Case Law

B. Investigation of available statistical information.

In order to answer the question the evidence must first be examined to enable an informed answer to be provided.

There is evidence to suggest that the main economic and commercial factors hindering the development of effective health & safety in the UK stem from the burden of bureaucracy. This has been found to be due to:

A. Complex Structure of Legislation

1. EU Framework Directive 1989
2. Duplication of Legislation

B. Development of ‘Compensation Culture’.

1. Strict Liability
2. Over Compliance/insurance & H&S Cons

The Burden of Bureaucracy.

This refers to the red tape that surrounds compliance with health and safety legislation.

In Lord Young’s report commissioned by the Prime Minister to review the current Health & Safety system with a view to putting some common sense back into health & safety, Lord Young states that:

“The aim is to free businesses from unnecessary bureaucratic burdens and the fear of having to pay out unjustified damages claims and legal fees.”

Complex Structure of Legislation

Since the introduction of HSWA, there have been a large number of new regulations introduced in the UK. This is partly in response to major accidents such as Kings Cross Fire 1987 and Piper Alpha disaster in 1988 as well as an attempt to regulate the evolving occupational health risks. This has lead to duplication in certain areas of legislation.

The other reason is partly in response to the introduction by the EU of the “six pack” of statutory regulations. This directive brought about the Management of Health & Safety at Work 1999 Regulations which requires all duty holders to carry out Risk Assessments. This has put a huge administrative burden on SME’s and shows that a large proportion of the administrative burden of Health & Safety Legislation comes from the EU Directives.

In the Prime minister’s forward in Lord Young’s report he states that:

“legislation designed to protect people from major hazards has been extended inappropriately to cover every walk of life, no matter how low the risk resulting in reports of absurd examples of senseless bureaucracy getting in the way of organisations that contribute to building a bigger and stronger society, and businesses being drowned in red tape, confused and in fear of being sued for even minor accidents.” ²

Lord Young states in his report that this is

“Largely the result of the way in which sensible health and safety rules that apply to hazardous occupations have been applied across all occupations.”

He partially blames the EU stating

“Part of the responsibility lies with the EU where the Framework Directive of 1989 made risk assessments compulsory across all occupations, whether hazardous or not and in part to the overcautious approach of eliminating all risks instead of applying the test contained within the act of a ‘reasonably practicable’ approach.”

He also states that

“I believe that a ‘compensation culture’ driven by litigation is at the heart of the problems that so beset health & safety today.”

This statement infers that the real problem lies with the legislation itself, in addition to the way that it is being interpreted and applied.

Professor Loftstedt took this further by producing a report which focused on reviewing the approx 200 regulations and 53 associated Acops with a view to reducing the burden of legislation on businesses whilst maintaining the progress in Health & Safety outcomes.

Loftsteadt recommends :

1. Simplyfying the regulatory framework with sector-specific

2. Reviewing the regulations for low risk businesses

3. Working more closely with EU to ensure that directives are risk and evidence based and not prescriptive.

Compensation Culture

¹& ² Lord Young of Griffham, Common Sense, Common Safety, 2010 www.number10.gov.uk/wp-content/uploads/402906_CommonSense_acc.pdf

Conclusion

This question asks “To what extent has the development of effective Health & Safety Legislation in the United Kingdom been hindered by economic & commercial factors?” I would argue that the extent that it has been hindered is significantly lower than the extent to which Health & Safety has affected the economy and commerce.

I base this argument on the facts

There is no dispute that since the introduction of the Health & Safety at Work etc Act 1974 (HSAW 1974), workplaces have becomes safer and the number of accidents have decreased substantially resulting in the UK having the lowest number of non-fatal accidents and second lowest number of fatal accidents in Europe. However, the burden placed on Small to Medium Enterprises (SME’s) by the above factors is having a detrimental affect on economic growth.

We can write a custom essay

According to Your Specific Requirements

Order an essay

You May Also Find These Documents Helpful

What explains Lenovo’s success prior to the...

Why did IBM want to sell its PC business? Why did IBM sell to Lenovo? According to Quelch & Knoop (2006) the goal of IBM was to have a strategic change in its activities to focus on different business area then PC business. IBM has been recognised as one of the best player of PCs business in the past. The International Business Machines Corporation was...

Luxury Eco Certification Standard

“Sustainable development is the development that meets the needs of the present without compromising the ability of future generations to meet their own needs”. (Brundtland commission, 1987, p. 8). Nowadays, almost every single company is committed to a sustainable behavior and awareness. The Landmark hotel in London, is certainly a part of the sustainable movement. It won several awards for its sustainability policies. For example...

Joli Trustees Limited - business information

1. Executive Summary JoLi Business Groups Ltd, a St. Lucia-based company owned by my husband and myself John and Lilah Peterkin which comprises of a small restaurant and photography shop. Wood Bay will operate Wood Bay Restaurant & Bar, a single unit, medium-size restaurant serving healthy, contemporary style food. The restaurant is located on the Rodney Bay waterfront previously called the Lime Restaurant. 1.1 Objectives...

The Scottish Economy

Government operated businesses and privately-owned businesses allow Scotland to trade under a mixed economy. A mixed economy enables the country to be cooperatively operated by the rules of supply and demand while the Government control certain areas of the economy such as public services including health care, education and public transport. The Government in Scotland will intervene in the market to sustain economic growth. In...

Why is it important for a business...

The main objective of any professional run organization is to be successful and healthy. Being successful and healthy is strictly linked to making a profit, adding value to the asset and reinvesting to grow in the future. Therefore, an important management role is to achieve this objective by using a range of financial planning tools. Within these tools, the budgeting process is definitely the most...

Get Access To The Full Essay
icon
300+
Materials Daily
icon
100,000+ Subjects
2000+ Topics
icon
Free Plagiarism
Checker
icon
All Materials
are Cataloged Well

Sorry, but copying text is forbidden on this website. If you need this or any other sample, we can send it to you via email.

By clicking "SEND", you agree to our terms of service and privacy policy. We'll occasionally send you account related and promo emails.

Your Answer Is Very Helpful For Us
Thank You A Lot!

logo

Emma Taylor

online

Hi there!
Would you like to get such a paper?
How about getting a customized one?