Health & Safety Executive (HSE) on behalf of DWP are failing to protect and help people regarding industry loop holes and ‘tobacco’ style public relations – they cannot even keep DWP in check, let alone industry and public authorities.
From a personal perspective and on a legal basis concerning serious allergies – DWP has failed to provide facilities, haven’t adhered to H&S rights, disability, equality and legislation compliance. Given they are suppose to be the department responsible for these – how do they think people are going to fare in the workplace and in daily life – exactly how am I protected, when DWP completely ignores legislation themselves.
Disability has serious “SOCIAL EFFECTS AND LIFE CHANGING EVENT” – this H&S case below indicates, just how exposure to harmful substances has serious consequences in being poisoned / injured; even DWP’s Health & Safety Executive (HSE) recognises this, but basically only so they could create revenue and fine the company, but on a personal levels do nothing to actually help persons who have been harmed !
As a result, similar to myself, this guy is basically ostracised from society after toxic level of chemical exposure developed health problems in further reacting to a wide variety of other substances !
“My entire way of life has had to change. I feel like a prisoner in my own home”
(nb. this now needs to be accessed under ‘national archives’ if link doesn’t work, it’s dated 12 Nov 2012, title “Worker suffers life changing condition after company ignores ozone danger”)
This guys disability happened, merely because he was exposed to unsafe level of ozone ie. molecules of three oxygen atom (O3), and the company was subject to a Health & Safety prosecution. The ozone exposure at work, resulted in acute irritant asthma, unable to return to work and struggles with day-to-day activities due to no help and high sensitivity to different chemicals and smells. Anything from perfume to exhaust fumes can trigger an asthma attack.
Stated: he can no longer carry out normal activities like taking the dog for a walk or wandering to the pub without worrying about what is round the corner, from a garden fire to chimney smoke to car fumes. They could all start the asthma, struggles to go to people’s houses as things like air fresheners, candles, strong perfumes, deodorants can all trigger an attack.
Note, Section 2(1) and 3(1) of the Health and Safety at Work etc Act 1974. The company was fined £20,000 and ordered it to pay costs of £11,565 – nothing to the actual victim, consumer cases do not even get prosecuted eg. Lynx spray deaths as they have hazard warning labels !
Apart from Disability convention, Equality act, DWP are certainly out of order on basic legislation that still applies Health & Safety Act 1974
DWP IGNORED LEGISLATION – APPLIES TO ALL EMPLOYERS:
Section 2(1) of Health and Safety at Work etc Act 1974 states:
“It shall be the duty of every employer to ensure, so far as is reasonably practicable, the health, safety and welfare at work of all his employees.”
Section 3(1) of Health and Safety at Work etc Act 1974 states:
“IT SHALL BE THE DUTY OF EVERY EMPLOYER to conduct his undertaking in such a way AS TO ENSURE, so far as is reasonably practicable, that PERSONS NOT IN HIS EMPLOYMENT WHO MAY BE AFFECTED thereby ARE NOT THEREBY EXPOSED TO RISKS TO THEIR HEALTH OR SAFETY.”
Note, ‘INVISIBLE ILL’ CASES LIKE MYSELF ARE IGNORED BY ALL GOVERNMENT DEPARTMENTS. Any prosecution, HSE fines goes to the government coffers NOT to the injured (who gets no help) !
As to allergies / asthma and general harmful effects of AIR FRESHENERS and other such products – widely sold as innocuous, but do have HAZARD LABELS, are TOXIC and do cause long term health problems. They also contain POTENT SENSITISERS regarding allergies and asthma; that’s without mentioning found to have carcinogenic and mutagenic properties etc.
US government agency’s 2006 research, highlighted apart from toxic nature of chemicals contained in Air-Fresheners, a further ‘toxic-soup’ was created of secondary harmful by-products eg. formaldehyde is created via interaction air freshners and ozone (O3), that is given off many indoor appliances and naturally occurring.
MANUFACTURERS HAVE BEEN ALLOWED TO GET AWAY WITH DEATHS AND HARM – pathetically due to having HAZARD labels. A prime example of lax regulation – Lynx deodorant a kid’s death, apparently bathrooms are ‘confined’ spaces in which it should NOT be used; note, advertising gives the opposite impression, ie. that it is completely innocuous showing models freely spraying Lynx all over their bodies with no restraint, no wonder kids are mislead.
It is inexcusable that Government and public sector agencies fail to protect people like myself.
As to CONSUMER AWARENESS : government agencies promote false security, ie. that unsafe products wouldn’t be allowed to be sold; trade organisation even make public statement to that extent. Like pharmaceuticals, harm is hidden, data manipulated and mostly nothing is done, at best perhaps a fine or restriction and quietly change product composition or take it off the market – but, only when it is becoming publically obvious to causing vast amount of harm to people !
On CONSUMER SAFETY : manufacturers couldn’t care less while profitable, Lynx is particularly notorious at causing health problems for people that are not even particularly sensitive. Likewise hair dyes – Methylisothiazolinone, it was first registered in the US in 1977 and widely used in UK despite evidence it is harmful. Likewise many other harmful chemicals get fleetingly reported in the press., but mostly nothing is done… or alternate products get promoted until the fuss dies down, forgetting the harm that has been inflicted and the people who are left having to live with this.
NHS KNOW OF HEALTH PROBLEMS BUT COMPLETELY FAILS TO PROTECT PATIENTS – maybe acknowledging ill health or that reactions occurs, but does virtually NOTHING regarding prevention or protect from other people being harmed in this way.
Regarding vast array of products containing harmful ingredients, this is reflected in the epidemic of allergy, asthma, skin problems etc. DWP – HSE as failing in this respect.
Nb, TOXIC products are advertised as innocuous and desirable ! Consumer ignorance is cultivated by sham advertising and PR manipulation; using the same tactics as the tobacco industry – chronic health problems are hidden and ignore, the NHS on a medical basis has to pick up the tab, not the profiteering companies.
Regarding exposure, many people like myself DO NOT KNOW OR CONSENT TO WHAT THEY ARE BEING SUBJECTED TO, IN THE CHEMICAL PRODUCTS USED BY THIRD PARTIES OR ORGANISATIONS, especially endemic airborne chemicals.
As to harmful products and general ‘denial’/ ignorance of NHS – over zealous use of antibacterial chemicals like triclosan is contributing to surge in drug-resistant germs and superbugs contributing to making antibiotics ineffective.
In March 2010, the European Union banned triclosan chemical from all products that come into contact with food, such as containers and silverware.
But, like pesticides, it is still used in UK ( ignoring EU directives), and is even used despite there is NO evidence of Triclosan actually prevents spread of germs …… instead of protection ‘antibacterial’ triclosan has been found to damage health. Easy to read summary on Triclosan:
- Chemicals are, at best, ineffective, and at worst, a threat to public heath
- Chemicals like triclosan could interfere with hormone levels and spur the growth of drug-resistant bacteria
- FDA is looking at only antibacterial soaps and body washes used with water – not hand sanitizers and hand wipes (nb. these are ignored, despite research finding soap and water found to be more effective)
To repeat again, in my case concerning toxicity – HSE failed to restrict dichlorobenzene on behalf of DWP regarding ventilation and product safety in the workplace. Alongside dichlorobenzene, fragrance (perfume) chemicals and many other chemicals in commercial products are sensitizers and are extremely harmful too – some recently banned by EU, but many others still ignored.
HSE Extract – Air Freshener REACH consultations 2012 and EU actual now restricted 2015 regarding dichlorobenzene (legislation doesn’t go far enough and it’s too regarding protection of myself ):
“Consumers are exposed to the substance when they use 1,4-dichlorobenzene based products at home or when they visit public toilets deodorised with these products…… “
1,4-dichlorobenzene has been classified as a category 2 carcinogen (liver tumours). It also affects the kidneys and respiratory tract.
“The dossier demonstrates that consumers using 1,4-dichlorobenzene products at home, and professionals employed in public toilets where 1,4-dichlorobenzene products are used are exposed above safe levels, i.e. the risks from the substance in these population groups are not adequately controlled. “
It is estimated that the benefits of the restriction would be between 9 and 22 times higher than the costs –
ARCHIVED HSE REFERENCE (scroll down to section 2)
Health concerns confirmed 2012 by EU REACH and restriction came into force 2015: Excessive exposure to 1,4-dichlorobenzene may affect the blood, brain, eye, kidney, liver, lung and skin. And HSE previously Feb 2006, knew this but had done nothing.
The only thing to be thankful for on my behalf is the EU, who have actually been steps taken to protect people with allergies and restrict such hazardous chemicals. Although, now HSE are running consultations to try and get this overturned as soon as UK leaves the EU.
There may be problems with the national archived weblinks (as they often break and are quite an assault course trying to access these); alternatively HSE archives can be searched manually by month/ year regarding 1.4-dichlorobenzene or better source of info go direct to EU Reach archives.
As to case law:
On risk of harm, this is actually helpful in protection of recognising the problem – this lady, probably doesn’t release, that she has highlighted and helped the plight on many people – despite, it’s continually ignored by government departments (anyone that is inconvenient to them is ghosted in not existing ).
Dyer v London Ambulance NHS Trust UKEAT/0500/13
Discussion article below – EAT considered whether any reasonable adjustment could have been made for an employee who had a potentially life-threatening sensitivity to cosmetics.
Aerosols, perfume and reasonable adjustments
Discussion Article 1 December 2014 extract:
Is it possible to have a situation when no reasonable adjustments can be made for a disabled person?
Yes, but only rarely, held the Appeal Tribunal in the recent case of Dyer v. London Ambulance NHS Trust 2014.
Background: Mrs Dyer, after working 7 years for the NHS Trust, developed a severe reaction to aerosol body spray. This had resulted in a near-death experience requiring hospitalisation for 4 days. Since then (2009) she had not returned to work.
Mrs Dyer claimed that, as her condition amounted to a disability for the purposes of the Equality Act 2010, the NHS Trust was obliged to make reasonable adjustments so that she could return to work. It is the ‘provision criterion or practice’ put in place by the employer that needs to be reasonably adjusted. In this case, the PCP Mrs Dyer claimed was in place, was the practice of allowing people to spray cosmetic products in working areas, and, potentially, that the mere wearing of perfume in the workplace may cause an adverse reaction. Could reasonable adjustments be made to this?
The Employment Appeal Tribunal agreed with the Employment Tribunal, who found that it was not reasonable or practicable for the NHS Trust to enforce an aerosol and perfume free workplace. Although it might be possible to have such a policy, and in a small place it may be possible to enforce it, this was not the case in this particular (large) workplace.
It was significant that the possible consequences were fatal if someone didn’t observe a ban, even if this was by mistake.
…..Nothing they could reasonably do to accommodate it. extract end.