Parliamentary Work and Pensions Committee inquiry on HSE’s approach to asbestos management

July last year the Work and Pensions Committee launched an inquiry into how the Health and Safety Executive (HSE) manages the continued presence of asbestos in buildings.

Parliamentary Work and Pensions Committee inquiry on HSE’s approach to asbestos management

What questions were asked? Who gave evidence?

The Committee asked for views on a number of questions, including; What are the current risks posted by asbestos in the workplace? How effective is the current legislative and regulatory framework for the management of asbestos? Does HSE keep adequate records of asbestos in public buildings?

The inquiry meetings held on 17 November and 15 December 2021 heard evidence from numerous specialists, and HSE gave evidence at the meeting held on 2 February 2022

Association contacted for industry view

The Committee invited the Association to give oral evidence, on behalf of the industry, at the inquiry meeting on 15 December 2021, following the Association submitting written evidence.

Based on the type of evidence the inquiry was looking for, the ARCA Governing Council decided that it was appropriate for a member of the ATaC Management Committee to present on behalf of the Association.

The Association put forwarded a number of comments, including:

  • Asbestos surveys should only be carried out by UKAS accredited organisations
  • Regulation 4 of the Control of Asbestos Regulations 2012, the Duty to Manage, needs enforcing more rigorously

Following this inquiry meeting the Association was contacted by the Committee, and subsequently submitted further evidence to address the areas the Committee had highlighted.

What happens next?

Most inquiries result in a report to the House, which normally begins with the Committee discussing a proposed structure for the report.

The Association has produced an overview article on the inquiry which is available to read here

The Association will continue to play its part in this significant development within the asbestos management industry.