As promised during his election campaign, Prime Minister David Cameron has confirmed the appointment of the Rt Hon Lord Young of Graffham as his adviser on health and safety law and practice.
Mr Cameron stated that he saw “the rise of the compensation culture over the last ten years” as a major issue, and was critical of the way that some health and safety laws are applied. Lord Young’s brief is to work with Government departments to look at all the legislation and ensure that businesses are not overburdened with red tape. In accepting his appointment, Lord Young commented that he was looking for a common-sense approach to regulation, targeted to where the risk lay and without excessive bureaucracy. As well as the impact on companies, he will address the impact on the public sector and community organisations.
Trades Union Congress general secretary Brendan Barber is on record as saying that far from scrutinising the legislation, time would be “better spent investigating a work culture that injures a quarter of a million people each year and makes another half a million employees ill”.