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  HSE calls for New Year resolution on health and safety blame game

HSE calls for New Year resolution on health and safety blame game

11 January 2015 Email this article

Businesses ought to turn over a new leaf and stop blaming health and safety for poor or over-the-top decisions, says the Health and Safety Executive (HSE).

The regulator launched its 40th anniversary year with a call to stop the culture of blaming anything and everything on non-existent ‘health and safety’ rules.

It has also recently published research from the University of Exeter, which reveals half of all cases put to HSE’s Myth Busters Challenge Panel came from shops, cafes and leisure centres, which were behind ridiculous decisions such as £30 delivery charges and being unable to use floats or goggles in a swimming pool - all in the name of health and safety.

The research which also looks at perceptions and understanding of health and safety regulation in society, found the fear of being sued, cost avoidance and lack of training were other key reasons behind the use of the health and safety myth.

Discussing the research, Judith Hackitt, Chair of HSE and the Myth Busters Challenge Panel said: HSE wants to encourage everyone, especially those working in leisure and retail, to make a resolution to stop using the health and safety catch-all excuse.

“Give the real reason for the decision you take. We want people to be honest – giving health and safety the blame is lazy and unhelpful.

“Customers are at the heart any business. Getting rid of over-the-top decisions blamed on health and safety will improve the service customers receive and enable the business to prosper.”