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Deregulation Bill Enters Committee Stage

February 25, 2014
Health and Safety

health and safetyHaving received its second reading in the House of Commons earlier this month, the Deregulation Bill has entered the committee stage, where a number of experts will give evidence on the various sections of the proposed legislation.

Initial proceedings are set to include discussions on proposals to exempt up to a million self-employed workers from Health and Safety legislation. Representatives of the Institution for Occupational Safety and Health (IOSH) will be present, and IOSH head of policy and public affairs Richard Jones is critical of the bill, saying: “Health and safety is often misunderstood and wrongly labelled as a barrier to business, whereas in fact it sustains business growth and success. The Government needs to promote this message, provide health and safety support for SMEs and debunk the misperceptions.”

It is estimated that Health and Safety failures currently cost the UK economy £13.4 billion every year. The original proposal contained in the Bill came from the 2011 Lofstedt Review published, with the Cabinet Office predicting that the changes will save businesses in the region of £300,000 a year.

The committee stage will run until March 25th and comments on the Bill, which has 69 clauses and covers twelve government departments, can still be made in writing.

You can see a full copy of the Bill here