Arco, the UK’s leading safety company has brought together a coalition of MPs and Lords, academics and industry leaders in the health and safety sector, to call on the Government to honour its commitment that Britain will lead a “race to the top” on health and safety standards after the UK has left the European Union.
In a letter co-ordinated by Arco and published in the Evening Standard 23/7/18, twelve senior figures from the health and safety industry have joined with parliamentarians to warn against Brexit being seen as an opportunity to reduce workplace protections.
Referencing a speech by Brexit Secretary David Davis earlier this year, in which he said that Brexit would not turn the UK into “a Mad Max style world borrowed from dystopian fiction”, the signatories argue that the Government should commit to ongoing alignment with the EU to preserve the current safeguards that European legislation gives to employees.
The letter also calls on the Government to make continued membership of various EU bodies, including the European Committee for Electrotechnical Standards (CENLEC), and EU-OSHA, the European information agency for occupational health and safety, part of their negotiating objectives.
Signatories to the letter include Errol Taylor, Chief Executive of the Royal Society for the Prevention of Accidents, Jonathan O’Neil, Chief Executive of the Fire Protection Association, Teresa Budworth, Chief Executive, NEBOSH and Leon Livermore, Chief Executive of the Chartered Trading Standards Institute.
Thomas Martin, Chairman of Arco, said: “The British people voted to leave the EU. They did not vote to make their workplace and lives more dangerous.
“Leaving the EU offers the opportunity to re-establish the UK as a world leader in health and safety by improving product certification and marking regimes. But this must be underpinned by a firm commitment to preserving the protections that current EU legislation gives to workers, to ensure that no one is made less safe as a result of Brexit.”