The All-Party Parliamentary Group on Occupational Safety and Health (APPGOSH) has published a report, "Local Authorities and Health and Safety" which challenges the assumption that workplaces which are regulated by local authorities (as opposed to the HSE), such as offices, shops, warehouses, and pubs and clubs, necessarily carry a lower health and safety risk. The report points to the high rates of injury and illness in warehouses, and of occupational disease in offices (stress), supermarkets (musculoskeletal disorders), and pubs (violence).
Report recommendations include:
- placing more emphasis during inspections on health, rather than just safety;
- re-introducing compulsory pro-active inspection for all new premises or businesses regulated by the local authorities
- extending fees for intervention (FFI) to local authority-regulated activities.
FFI was introduced in October 2012, allowing the Health & Safety Executive to charge businesses in the sectors that it regulates for the costs of regulation at a rate of £129 per hour. Further information about FFI can be found in my earlier blog.