Regulatory Surrender: Death, Injury and the Non-Enforcement of Law (Download)

This book examines the issue of enforcement in health and safety law.

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About the book

A long line of senior figures argue that Britain has one of the best safety records in the world. But, as the authors of this report argue, such claims bear an increasingly tenuous relationship with the reality of working life.

Based upon close analysis of government, parliamentary and civil service documents, and using previously unpublished information gained from Freedom of Information requests, the authors chart what they describe as a “collapse” in the numbers of HSE inspections and enforcement.

This collapse is most dramatically illustrated in the rate of prosecutions following deaths at work – falling from 46% to 28% in six years. In the context of the regulatory failures in the Gulf of Mexico and coinciding with Lord Young’s health and safety review, this timely book documents the shift towards a politics of regulatory surrender. With Britain in the midst of a fiscal crisis, the book asks where the unfolding crisis in enforcement leaves worker safety.


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