Health and Safety at Work etc. Act 1974


So what does the “etc” stand for ?

The oft-missed-out “etc” relates to the other duties of employes and employees including ensuring not just the health and safety but also the welfare at work of employees.

You will also note if looking at the act here that there are various other sections such as the provison of inspectors, the approval of codes of practice by the Health and Safety Commission.  Some of these make the act a piece of so-called “enabaling legislation” which allows the Secretary of State to create regulations without the need for additional approval by Parliament.  These include The Health and Safety (First-Aid) Regulations 1981 which regulate the provision for first aid in the workplace.

There have been calls in the media, including on the BBC Panorama programme, for reform of health and safety legislation and enforcement. Despite these it seems that the Health and Safety at Work etc. Act 1974 is here to stay – at least for the time being

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