Influential leaders shape Great Britain’s future health and safety strategy

Leading industry figures and other key influencers are being urged to have a say in shaping the future strategy for Great Britain’s health and safety system.

The Health and Safety Executive (HSE) today published six themes that the five-year strategy will cover, as it begins engaging the people and organisations it thinks can help the nations and regions of Great Britain work well.

HSE Chair Judith Hackitt said: “We can be proud of the country’s record on work-related safety and health – it’s one of the best in the world. Making it even better is the challenge, so that we can all continue to help Great Britain work well. Getting risk management right is an enabler for productivity, innovation and growth, and is integral to business success as well as the wellbeing of workers.

“We’re starting a conversation with a wide range of influencers – including employers, workers, local and central government, unions, other regulators and key representative groups – because it’s important that this is a strategy for all, shaped by all.”

Justin Tomlinson MP, Minister for Disabled People, with responsibility for health and safety, said: “In Government, we are determined to build a more productive Britain, one that rewards hard work and helps all to benefit from the opportunities of economic growth.

“It is essential that health and safety is part of that, supporting British employers in their ambition and supporting workers who want to get on.

“Taking sensible steps to keep workers safe and well is something that the best-run businesses do. It’s good for people, it’s good for productivity and it’s good for growth.”

More details on how people can join in will be released at in the coming weeks. Plans include events across Great Britain, digital discussion groups and a campaign hashtag: #HelpGBWorkWell

Notes to Editors:

  1. The six themes for the strategy are:
    • Promoting broader ownership of workplace health and safety
    • Highlighting and tackling the burden of work-related ill-health
    • Supporting small firms
    • Enabling productivity through proportionate risk management
    • Anticipating and tackling the challenges of new technology and ways of working
    • Sharing the benefits or Great Britain’s approach
  2. Britain has one of the lowest rates of fatal injuries at work in Europe.
  3. There has been a huge reduction in deaths and injuries at work in the 40 years since the Health and Safety at Work etc Act 1974 was introduced – for example, 86 per cent fewer fatal injuries to employees in 2014/15 compared to 1974. But, in 2014/15:
    • 142 people did not come home from work
    • 611,000 more suffered a non-fatal injury at work
    • 1.2 million working people were suffering from a work-related illness
    • £14.3 billion was the cost to Great Britain of injuries and new cases of ill-health from current working conditions
    • 27.3 million working days were lost to work-related ill health or injury
  4. The Health and Safety Executive (HSE) is Great Britain’s national regulator for workplace health and safety. It aims to reduce work-related death, injury and ill health. It does so through research, information and advice, promoting training; new or revised regulations and codes of practice, and working with local authority partners by inspection, investigation and enforcement.


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