Health and Safety to move

Tynwald buildings, Douglas

Tynwald buildings, Douglas

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The Health and Safety at Work Inspectorate is set to switch department.

Tynwald this week will be asked to approve a plan to relocate the Inspectorate from the Department of Infrastructure to the Department of Environment, Food and Agriculture.

If the go-ahead is given, its four-strong team will be amalgamated with DEFA’s existing environmental protection, environmental health and food safety staff in a single Environment, Safety and Health Directorate.

New DEFA Minister Richard Ronan said the move will mean improved services to the public.

He said: ‘I was keen to see the inspectorate move to DEFA.

‘A larger pool of qualified officers and inspectors operating within a single directorate will allow us to deliver a better and more efficient service than can currently be delivered by two separate teams operating within two different departments under two distinct management structures.

‘Businesses would benefit from a reduction in the number of regulatory agencies they have to liaise with, which could save them money and reduce the number of different visits they receive, as inspectors would be competent to cover the full range of health, safety and hygiene issues in a single visit.’

He added: ‘Reservations have been expressed about the DoI – a department responsible for delivering a range of potentially higher risk functions – being the appropriate home for the agency responsible for enforcing health and safety legislation.’

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