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Sorry state
The sickening impact of a tame watchdog It’s not a good time to be a regulator. The Conservative government is regulation-averse and the Health and Safety Executive (HSE) has seen its job grow and budget shrink. But, warns Hazards the watchdog has also bought in to a Tory hands-off approach that has seen accountability plummet and work-related harm soar.
Hazards, number 159, 2023

Right mess
Brexit waffle worrying for workers; safety watchdog loses its headThe work safety watchdog has despatched its lame duck leader. The new Brexit secretary wants safety and employment rules axed. Workplace deaths are up. Hazards argues there’s never been a greater need for union protection.
Hazards, number 143, 2018

Bad job
Insecure work review 'not the game-changer needed'A government-commissioned review of insecurity at work has failed to recognise the game-changing improvements required to solve abusive employment practices. It also ignored almost entirely the cost to health of poor, poorly paid work, saying only the government and rogue businesses stand to benefit.
Hazards, number 139, 2017

Blue murder
Tower block inferno must mean an end to the Tory deregulation fetishTory policies attacking regulators, services, welfare, employment rights and fire, building, product and workplace safety and environmental protection didn't hurt everyone. But for the worst affected, they were deadly.
Hazards 138, June 2017

Dangerous li(v)es
Removing safety protection is inviting the ultimate capital crime The Health and Safety Executive has been hobbled by an unprecedented and savage funding cut. Safety rules are being relaxed. And the government says it’s all happening in the name of common sense. Don’t you believe it – it’s a political project driven by the business lobby and built around dangerous lies. Hazards explodes the myth that health and safety regulation and enforcement is a ‘burden’ on business.
Hazards report, November 2010

Hard labour
Labour pledges to listen and act on workplace health and safetyJohn McDonnell says the Health and Safety Executive's regulatory mission has been compromised by its new profit motive. Brexit threatens worse to come. But the shadow chancellor says your protection is a 'red line' issue for Labour – and that means delivering a strong safety regime underpinned by restored trade union rights.
Hazards 135, September 2016

Rotten board
Cabinet minister says boss can be 'employee' voice on HSE boardWho does the secretary of state for work think should speak for workers on the Health and Safety Executive board? In a move the TUC condemned as ‘dangerous’, Hazards editor Rory O’Neill discovered Damian Green believes a former director of Greggs the Bakers is a palatable pick.
Hazards 135, September 2016

Buy me
HSE pimps out its services as regulating takes a back seatThe Health and Safety Executive (HSE) will soon be just half the watchdog it used to be. Hazards editor Rory O’Neill warns that as swingeing funding cuts bite, the once dedicated regulator is now devoting scant resources to pimping itself out to those with the means to pay.
Hazards 134, June 2016

HSE is all talk
How it became unsafe to leave policy to the safety regulatorThe Health and Safety Executive (HSE) has just completed a consultation on its safety strategy. Scratch that. It was not a consultation, it was a ‘conversation’, says Hazards editor Rory O’Neill. The new strategy is no more than a brochure highlighting vague themes decided before the talking even began.
Hazards 133, March 2016

Cameron killed
He wanted to learn a trade; he ended up dead at 16 Joanne Hill thought her teenage son had a bright future when he secured a place on a government-funded engineering apprenticeship. But when Hazards magazine’s Jawad Qasrawi met with her, he discovered she couldn’t have been more wrong.
Hazards 131, September 2015

Hey! Whatcha gonna do?
It’s time to step up and act up for health and safety at workThere will be a new government on 7 May 2015. With work getting more unhealthy, the workforce and the country are paying a heavy price. Hilda Palmer of the national Hazards Campaign spells out what it wants you and that new government to do about it.
Hazards 129, January-March 2015

Don't pimp our watchdog!
Our safety is not for saleIncoming Health and Safety Executive head Dr Richard Judge is under government instruction to ‘commercialise’ the watchdog. But a Hazards campaign is urging the new chief executive to ensure the regulator uses its legal powers, people and skills to protect us at work, instead of flogging its services to all-comers
Hazards 127, July-September 2014

A line in the sand
Foot-dragging HSE must back better controls over silica at workThe Health and Safety Executive doesn’t want a tighter exposure standard for crystalline silica, either in the UK or Europe. Hazards unpicks its flimsy – and dangerous – excuses.
Hazards 127, July-September 2014

Dust to dust
Deadly silica standard is killing UK workersCrystalline silica exposures kill over 1,000 workers a year in in the UK and leaves many more fighting for breath. But, unlike its US counterpart, the Health and Safety Executive (HSE) thinks our deadly silica exposure standard is just fine.
Hazards 126, April-June 2014

Toxic record
TUC challenges the government’s deadly strategy The government’s “toxic, corrosive and hazardous” record on health and safety has placed workers at risk and the Health and Safety Executive (HSE) in jeopardy, the TUC is warning.
Hazards 126, April-June 2014

What if...?
Scots map out a better route to safer, fairer workplacesImagine you could start from scratch and design a just and effective workplace health and safety regulatory regime. As the Scottish independence referendum looms, Stirling University’s Professor Andy Watterson is doing just that.
Hazards 126, April-June 2014

Fracking boom
Scots map out a better route to safer, fairer workplacesWith massive reservoirs of oil and gas trapped in the rocks under our feet, the oil industry is eager to get fracking. But US evidence of chemical related deaths, soaring fatalities and over-exposure to deadly dust has raised seriously unhealthy questions.
Hazards 126, April-June 2014

Your safety is for sale
Review finds HSE is fit for purpose; minister has a fitThe government has lost patience with reviews of the safety system that rather annoyingly find regulation and enforcement are a good idea. After the latest concluded the Health and Safety Executive is ‘fit for purpose’ ministers decided to ignore the evidence and ‘commercialise’ the official safety system anyway.
Hazards 125, January-March 2014

Lab rats
The anatomy of deadly product defence campaignsSome scientific hired guns try to hide their industry ties; others flaunt them. Either way cash-for-science can be very bad news for your health. Hazards editor Rory O’Neill follows the money.
Hazards 124, October-December 2013

Destroy safety!
Business says deregulate: The government will obey David Cameron’s Business Taskforce claims safety regulations are bad for business. Hazards editor Rory O’Neill warns the robotic call from these red tape fixated ‘demented Daleks’ doesn’t add up. It will though leave a trail of human and economic devastation in its wake.
Hazards 124, October-December 2013

HSE looks less, counts less and couldn’t care lessWhen the Health and Safety Executive said it wanted to help firms “reduce the risk of over compliance” with regulations, it wasn’t an isolated moment of madness. HSE has become a government brainwashed and neutered watchdog that looks less, counts less and increasingly couldn’t care less.
Hazards 124, October-December 2013

Citizen sane
It's your choice. Red tape or bloody bandages? Are you mad that your survival at work is treated as a joke or ‘burden on business’? Are you angry the fading-fast safety watchdog is tamely fronting the government’s breakneck cull of life-or-death rights and safeguards? Well, Health and Safety Executive chief executive Geoffrey Podger is going, and we have a sane alternative…
Hazards 122, April-June 2013

Bloody bandages but no bloody compensation Compensation culture? I don’t think so. The government may want you to believe we are a nation of greedy money grabbing chancers, says Hazards editor Rory O’Neill, but claims figures tell a different story. Even those dying of occupational diseases have precious little chance of securing a payout.
Hazards 122, April-June 2013

Thick + fast
HSE damaged by interminable reviews and 'stupid' interference The government just can’t stop asking “what’s wrong with Health and Safety Executive?” Hazards editor Rory O’Neill says HSE’S problem is patently obvious - ministers have tied its hands, slashed its budget and hijacked it.
Hazards 122, April-June 2013

Work rules
Work rules: The high cost of neutering watchdogs Whether it is hazards in your workplace, horsemeat in your beefburger or Legionnaires’ in your neighbourhood, it is becoming evident that stringent regulation is not a burden, it is a necessity. Hazards editor Rory O’Neill looks at the costly consequences of rubbing out the rules.
Hazards special online report, March 2013

What do we want? TUC’s health and safety starter for 10 A new 10-point safety manifesto from the TUC spells out how to turn around the UK’s poor health and safety record and prevent thousands of work-related deaths each year. TUC’s Hugh Robertson says it is time to end a national tragedy that is also a huge drain on the economy.
Hazards 121 January-March 2013

Low life
How the government has put a low price on your life Whether your job is making people better or making plastics, don’t expect a safety inspector to call. Hazards reveals how the Health and Safety Executive (HSE) has designated most jobs either too safe for them to bother, or just not worth the effort even if they are shockingly dangerous.
Hazards special online report, January 2013

Give up
Give up. What can you do when a watchdog just sucks?
The Health and Safety Executive has no idea when it last inspected most workplaces, it rarely shows its face after a major injury and enforcement action is for the most part history. But Hazards editor Rory O’Neill says under a government mandated plan, there is much, much worse to come.
Hazards 119 July-September 2012

Dark hearts
The government and its business bankers treat your survival as a joke
The government says workplace safety laws hold back the economy. Ministers complain safety enforcement is a diversion business could and should do without. But, Hazards says, while this is lapped up greedily by the business lobby and the tabloids, there’s just one problem. It’s a cynical - and ultimately deadly - lie.
Hazards 118 April-June 2012

Mad men
'Monster' raving Cameron sees red tape; vows 'to kill off safety'
With the economy going down the pan, the prime minister has found his whipping boy. David Cameron is ‘waging war’ and has vowed to ‘kill off’ the workplace ‘health and safety monster’. Hazards reveals for the government this insanely dangerous talk isn’t about work, it’s about business.
Hazards 117, January-March 2012

More on we didn't vote to die at work

The true cost of deadly work

Regulations save lives and jobs

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The true cost of deadly work

The real job killers
Regulations don’t kill jobs; lack of regulations kill workers Pesky safety regulations and meddling inspectors are bringing the economy to its knees and stifling job creation, or so the business lobby says. But there’s a couple of large flies in their deregulatory ointment - the arguments are bogus and the statistics behind them are rigged. Regulation and enforcement are good for workers and good for jobs.
Hazards report, February 2011



Regulations save lives and jobs

You lie, we die
How the government is bad for you and for the economy Your life just got a little bit cheaper. Safety regulations and enforcement are out of favour, and for more and more workers, this could mean they are out of luck. Hazards warns this immoral government strategy will exact a high human and economic cost.
Hazards 118 April-June 2012

Mad men
'Monster' raving Cameron sees red tape; vows 'to kill off safety' With the economy going down the pan, the prime minister has found his whipping boy. David Cameron is ‘waging war’ and has vowed to ‘kill off’ the workplace ‘health and safety monster’. Hazards reveals for the government this insanely dangerous talk isn’t about work, it’s about business.
Hazards 117, January-March 2012

A kind of justice
Why justice may be hard won after brutal deaths at work A crushed head, burned alive, consumed in a workplace explosion. However horrific and preventable, the fight for justice after a death at work is likely to long and arduous – and frequently a series of cruel disappointments, bereaved families more often than not discover.
Hazards 117 January-March 2012

It is your neck on the block • Clegg and Cameron’s war on workers Government ministers from the prime minister to the safety minister are queuing up to say safety is bad for business. But LibDem leader and deputy prime minister Nick Clegg has trumped them all, assuring businesses he’ll make sure safety inspectors are not “breathing down your necks.”
Hazards 116, October-December 2011

Safety in the pits
Will Britain’s coal mines soon be more deadly than China’s? When five miners died this autumn in two separate incidents in 12 days, conditions in Britain’s coal mines briefly caught the public gaze. But Hazards editor Rory O’Neill says the media failed to spot the lack of safety oversight underground that has seen fatality rates in UK coal mines at their highest levels in 50 years.
Hazards 116, October-December 2011

TUC calls for action
Day of action on health and safety • 28 April 2012 Workplace health and safety has become the government’s favourite whipping boy. Safety rights and enforcement are being dismantled. TUC head of safety Hugh Robertson says unions and safety campaigners must expose, discredit and take action to undermine these deadly developments.
Hazards 116, October-December 2011

Where’s that watchdog?
HSE says talk to the machine – we say ‘no thanks’ Not only is the cash-starved, hands-tied Health and Safety Executive (HSE) disappearing, it is increasingly disappearing from view. It has blitzed contact telephone numbers and email addresses from the HSE website. And most injury reporting and official safety advice has now been consigned to the web too.
Hazards 116 October-December 2011

Firm favourites
Government would rather listen to business than reason In the four months after announcing in March 2011 the government’s strategy to dismantle workplace safety protections, DWP minister Chris Grayling met with 10 separate industry bodies to flesh out his plans. But he still cannot find any time in his diary for FACK, the organisation for those like Linda Whelan (above) who have been bereaved by work.
Hazards 115, July-September 2011

Where's the law?
It’s work, not the Wild West: Global warning on ‘deregulation fever’ Deadly employers will be the sole beneficiaries of a business-driven trend towards less health and safety regulation in workplaces worldwide, trades unions worldwide are warning.
Hazards report, May 2011

Body blow
Government jettisons your safety, sickness, compensation and job rights The UK government is not content with dismantling the system that keeps you safe and healthy at work. It is also punching holes in the safety net that could provide welfare or compensation when you do get sick and redress when you are fired, abused or victimised at work. And, to the delight of the business lobby, it is ignoring crucial evidence that safety regulation pays, saves lives and spurs job creation.
Hazards report, May 2011



Dark hearts
The government says workplace safety laws hold back the economy. Ministers complain safety enforcement is a diversion business could and should do without. But, Hazards says, while this is lapped up greedily by the business lobby and the tabloids, there’s just one problem. It’s a cynical - and ultimately deadly - lie.
Hazards 118 April-June 2012

Screw you
Tory bully boy Chris Grayling doesn’t like you. In fact, he’s out to get you. The employment minister has neutered a safety watchdog which even before the cuts managed to investigate just 1 in every 19 major injuries suffered at work. And now he’s handing over policy making to anti-regulation business bigwigs, warns Hazards.
Hazards 114, April-June 2011

Deregulation is really a workplace death wish
A UK government-commissioned review of health and safety, which will report to ministers in autumn 2011, is not really about changing the law. It’s about risk envy – our competitors don’t all abide by strict rules governing safety and decency at work, so why should the UK? And it is a topic on which Professor Ragnar Löfstedt, charged with undertaking the review, is an acknowledged expert.
Hazards 'green jobs' blog, 30 May 2011

Life support?
After Dorothy Wright watched her son Mark die from horrific injuries suffered in a workplace fireball, she at least expected jus tice. But she says blundering officials failed her family and warns a government “hell-bent” on slashing safety protections will consign more families to the same fate.
Hazards 113, January-March 2011

Is HSE finished?
It doesn’t have the money to do its job, enforcement is already at a record low and it is banned from conducting any health and safety campaigns. As disillusioned Health and Safety Executive (HSE) staff queue to leave, Hazards editor Rory O’Neill asks what future can there be for the beleaguered watchdog.
Hazards 113, January-March 2011

Rotten example
The UK’s offshore safety system has been hailed as a model of good practice. But US critics say they don’t want it over there, because it contains very risky assumptions – including an allowable death rate of one in every thousand workers.
Hazards 113, January-March 2011

Get shirty
A safety minister who is determined to see the Health and Safety Executive axed. A government that lops 35 per cent off HSE’s funding. We are living and working in dangerous times. If unions, sick and injured workers and bereaved relatives don’t stand up for safety, no-one else will.
Hazards 112, October-December 2010

Don’t base policy on deadly lies
Wherever you go, business lobby groups are trotting out cookie-cutter reports claiming businesses are folding, jobs are being lost, and the economy is being devastated. And the cause? The burden of regulation, with health, safety and environmental rules always targeted as top irritants.
Hazards 'green jobs' blog, 11 November 2010

Abuse of power
As BP, until this year Britain’s biggest company, reels from the impact of the Gulf of Mexico disaster, the UK government embarks on an unprecedented push to impose the deadly BP business model across the whole nation.
Hazards 111, July-September 2010

A neutered watchdog
Workplace safety has been undermined by the collapse of the Health and Safety Executive’s investigation and enforcement role. Academics Steve Tombs and Dave Whyte warn this “regulatory surrender” means even amputations are unlikely to be investigated and prosecutions are now a rarity.
Hazards 111, July-September 2010

Slash and burn
Securing safe and healthy workplaces requires good regulations, proper enforcement and decent rights, unions have told an official enquiry. But the government seems intent on axing lifesaving protections regardless of the evidence.
Hazards 111, July-September 2010

Who pays?
The British Chambers of Commerce is targeting health and safety laws because it says they cost business billions. Only it’s not true. And Hazards reveals the real cost of business neglecting safety is borne almost entirely by workers and the public purse, with companies evading the blame and the bill.
Hazards 106, April-June 2009


Vote to die T-shirts and posters
T-shirts – Adult sizes s, m, l, xl, xxl, xxxl: £6 (UK postage free), Child (ages 5-13): £4. Posters 'Job killer' and 'We didn't vote to die at work' (free).
Details from the Hazards Campaign, Windrush Millennium Centre, 70 Alexandra Road, Manchester M16 7WD, UK. See the latest Vote to die poster

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'We didn't vote to die at work' Facebook group

US report shows ‘Prevention Pays’
A report from a US safety group pulls together arguments demonstrating that good safety standards aren’t just in the interests of workers, there’s a big pay off for employers too. ‘Prevention pays: Solutions to help workers and businesses thrive,’ published by San Francisco-based Worksafe, tallies the costs – human, financial, and social – of failures to protect workers’ health and safety on the job.
Worksafe news release • Prevention pays: Solutions to help workers and businesses thrive, Worksafe, September 2011 [pdf] • Risks 52210 September 2011

Britain: IOSH ‘Life savings’ campaign
British businesses are losing their competitive edge because of a failure to tackle the risks of injury and illness in the workplace, says the Institution of Occupational Safety and Health (IOSH) has concluded. Its ‘Life Savings’ campaign is illustrated by examples of employers saving millions by making work safer.
IOSH Life Savings campaign • Risks 5084 June 2011

The case for health and safety
A new TUC report reveals that more than 20,000 people in the UK are killed prematurely by their work every year. In The Case for Health and Safety, TUC calls on the government to: ignore calls from the business lobby to reduce regulation and enforcement; champion the issue and appoint a government ‘tsar’ for health and safety; use the UK network of 150,000 trained union health and safety reps to even greater effect; and support the work of the HSE and local authorities in protecting people at work.
TUC news releaseThe Case for Health and Safety, TUC, 7 September 2010 • [pdf]

Fighting the cuts to health and safety
Health and safety funding is under threat from the cuts being proposed by the coalition government. This TUC briefing explains why this must not happen.
TUC briefing

How to lobby your MP on health and safety
A TUC guide to lobbying your MP at his or her surgery on the cuts proposed to the funding of the health and safety work performed by HSE and local authorities.
TUC guide

Hazards Campaign
Vote to die webpages

Face the FACKS - DVD
'Face the FACKs - The human face of workplace killing' is a new DVD from Families Against Corporate Killers (FACK). The resource features personal accounts from family members bereaved by work. It is intended to be a campaign and training tool on business responsibility for workplace health and safety.
FACK websiteFACK resourcesFace the FACKs - The human face of workplace killing, £10 including post and packing, cheques payable to 'GMHC', from: FACK, c/o Hazards Campaign, Windrush Millennium Centre, 70 Alexandra Road, Manchester M16 7WD.

Health and safety gone mad?
An Institute of Employment Rights (IER) briefing
August 2010 [pdf].


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