MP Calls For Review Of 'Weak' Laws

Asbestos Exposure

23.06.2008

A Labour MP has called on the Government to reconsider "weakening" laws which protect workers against being exposed to deadly hazards such as asbestos.

Ministers are set to remove the requirement that firms have to keep compulsory liability insurance certificates for 40 years, David Taylor, MP for Leicestershire NW, claimed. He also said there were plans to water down insurance law.

The issue was "very serious", Mr Taylor said, and affected thousands of people who were exposed to chemicals at work. During exchanges on coming parliamentary business, Commons Leader Harriet Harman said she wanted to see the "most effective regulation" and said Mr Taylor could have a meeting with ministers.

Those affected would later suffer from diseases that were slow to develop, such as mesothelioma, Mr Taylor pointed out. He spoke of "the Government's proposal before the summer recess to introduce a statutory instrument to weaken insurance law and to remove the obligation on employers to retain compulsory employers' liability insurance for 40 years".

He called on Ms Harman to urge ministers "to withdraw that particular statutory instrument and put it out to further consultation".

"This is a very serious issue and it affects many thousands of people," he added.

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