How much of our worker protection legislation will be reset depends on a combination of economic and political necessity.There is no doubting the union’s influence on our safety and health law. The think tank Open Europe calculated that two-thirds of OSH-related regulations introduced between 1997 and 2009 originated in the EU.But there are good reasons not to unpick our framework, however it was acquired and however “glorious” the opportunity for change.
IOSH Head of Policy and Public Affairs Richard Jones said: “Post-Brexit, the UK now has less influence over EU law. Now we’re exiting, it’s vital the UK continues to apply our successful risk-based health and safety system, which includes laws from EU directives, because it’s been found to be fit for purpose by several independent reviews and is respected and imitated across the world.“IOSH will continue to promote agreed international standards and to defend against any erosion of health and safety protections.
Words: Howard Fidderman Among the main arguments advanced by campaigners for a vote to leave the EU in the 23 June referendum is the flexibility that the UK would enjoy to initiate its own legislation and run its affairs in a way that is proportionate to and driven by the country’s particular needs.
With a possible change in our relationship with Europe in the offing, would leaving the bloc make the UK safety and health landscape look any different and would we remain as influential among the remaining members?Our robust Health and Safety at Work Act has had a profound impact on EU law. The act’s “so far as reasonably practicable” qualifying phrase was included in the 1989 Framework Directive on Safety and Health at Work (not without dissent), which became a strong foundation of EU safety and health regulation.