Corporate killing rules ‘bad for business’

The
Government’s proposed corporate killing legislation will not improve safety and
will be bad for business, according to new research.

City
law firm Norton Rose has published research on the proposals for a new
corporate killing bill – focusing on companies which operate in potentially
hazardous lines of business, such as the rail and construction industries.

Two-thirds
of companies said the proposals would have a negative impact on business –
pointing to concerns about increased costs and bureaucracy.

Sixty-four
per cent thought the legislation would promote a blame culture and make
business risk averse. In addition, 59 per cent of companies are not convinced
that the new legislation will improve safety.

Other
key findings include:


60 per cent of companies thought the Government’s proposals were primarily a
political manoeuvre to satisfy voters


59 per cent of companies said their greatest professional fear about a
work-related death would be the impact on corporate reputation


The majority of companies (79 per cent) thought that one individual member of
the company board should have overall responsibility for safety issues


68 per cent did not have confidence in the Health & Safety Executive’s
ability to carry out fair and effective investigations into corporate killing
incidents.

By Mike Berry

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