Regulating Scotland

Full reportPDF version

Executive summary

News release




Regulating Scotland: What works and what does not in occupational and environmental health and what the future may hold
Andrew Watterson and Rory O’Neill. September 2012.



Section 1
Executive summary
Principal lessons of the report

Section 2
The unfair burden of occupational and environmental ill-health

An unhealthy and unjust failure to act
When you don’t count the bodies, the bodies don’t count

Section 3
The political attack on regulations that save lives and money

Losing control in Scotland
Deregulation by another name
Giving bad business a break

Section 4
Making things worse with ‘better regulation’
When ‘better’ really means ‘business’
The fatal flaws of deregulation
Enforcement shift risks a dangerous leap back to the future

Section 5
Regulation not only works, it pays
The price of soft and deregulatory practices
The greater benefits of regulation

Section 6
The ever diminishing role of the Health and Safety Executive
The impending death of enforcement
Table 1: Effects of enforcement trends on major injury rates
It’s worse for workplace health
Making vulnerable workers pay
What is HSE doing in Scotland?

Section 7
SEPA’S wrong-headed embrace of better regulation
Better regulation displaces better policies
Table 2: Toxic sludge sites across Scotland 2012
SEPA’s singular role
What should SEPA do?
How should SEPA measure success?

Section 8
Case history: The ICL/Stockline explosion, Glasgow.

Section 9
Case history: The Legionnaires’ disease outbreak, Edinburgh.

Section 10
Conclusions and recommendations
A distinctive path for Scotland?