REHIS have shown support for an open letter signed by more than 70 organisations and individuals from the UK’s safety and health profession urging the prime minster to halt deregulation in light of the Grenfell Tower blaze.
Those signing argued that the health and safety regulations have been axed as matter of principle and a desire to blindly cut red tape. This, the letter argues, has led to a mind-set that even when it was recommended and accepted that mandatory fitting of sprinklers would make homes or schools safer, this was rejected in favour of non-regulatory action. ‘In practice, this approach favours inaction,’
The letter stated: ‘Good, well-evidenced and proportionate regulations in health and safety, based on full consultation, are developed and adopted because they save lives and protect people’s health and wellbeing.
‘They are not “burdens on business” but provide essential protection for the public from identifiable risks.
It added: ‘it is vital that this disaster marks a turning point for improved fire safety awareness and wider appreciation that good health and safety is an investment, not a cost.’
It urged the prime minister: ‘You have it in your power to remove immediately a further risk to people at work and outside of the workplace – unwise deregulation – which threatens public and worker safety.
‘We, leaders in health and safety in the UK, call on you to scrap the Government’s approach to health and safety deregulation and think again.
‘This could be announced immediately, it does not need to await the results of a public inquiry, and is the least that the victims of the Grenfell Tower fire deserve.’