The Act, which came into force on 6 April 2008, clarifies the criminal liabilities of companies including large organisations where serious failures in the management of health and safety result in a fatality.
Prosecutions will be of the corporate body and not individuals, but the liability of directors, board members or other individuals under health and safety law or general criminal law, will be unaffected. And the corporate body itself and individuals can still be prosecuted for separate health and safety offences.
The Act also largely removes the Crown immunity that applied to the previous common law corporate manslaughter offence. This is welcome, and consistent with Government and HSE policy to secure the eventual removal of Crown immunity for health and safety offences. The Act provides a number of specific exemptions that cover public policy decisions and the exercise of core public functions.
Companies and organisations should keep their health and safety management systems under review, in particular, the way in which their activities are managed and organised by senior management.
Health & Safety Training products from Safety Media can help reduce the risks associated with Corporate Manslaughter and monitor the risks to you and your business.
Suggested titles from our rnage of e-Learning Courses would include:
- Risk Assessment
- Slips, Trips & Falls
- Manual Handling
- Fire Safety
- Introduction to Health & Safety
As an Enterprise or Express e-Learning customer you would have full access to all of our online Health & Safety Training Courses.
For more information about the Corporate Manslaughter Act you can download a PDF released by the Ministry of Justice explaining what it is and who needs to be aware of it.
Watch our interview with Corporate Manslaughter expert Roy Thornley MPhil.