Month: September 2015

HSE Figures Show Rise in Work Related Fatalities

Over the last two decades, occupational fatalities have been on an obvious steady decline, which has plateaued somewhat in more recent years. However, the Health and Safety Executive (HSE) have released provisional statistics that show that the number of individuals fatally injured at work has actually increased over the last year.

Increase in Fatal Injuries

Across all industry sectors, the fatality rate between April 2013 and March 2014 was 0.45 per 100,000 workers. This figure increased slightly to 0.46 out of every 100,000 workers for the year April 2014 to March 2015, based on a five year average of 156 deaths per year – a rate of 0.53.

The latest figures from the HSE show that the service sector has the greatest number of fatalities. This sector includes a wide range of professions, from healthcare to retail. A total of 51 deaths occurred within this sector for 2014/15 – a 21% increase based on the previous 5 years.

16 people died within the manufacturing sector. This is a third lower than the average over the last 5 years – a rate of 0.55 compared to 0.84 over the last 5 years.

Within the waste and recycling industry there have been a total of 5 occupational deaths – a rate of 4.31 and an increase from the four deaths recorded in 2013/14.

Within the construction sector, there were 35 deaths compared to 44 – a fall of approximately one fifth from the previous year.

Across the UK

The latest figures show that the UK had a total rate of work related fatalities of 0.46 in every 100,000 workers dying. Scotland recorded the highest rate at 0.76, whilst the North East of England having the lowest rate at 0.09. The differences greatly depend on a number of factors, including the mix of industries and occupations within a region.

In total, there were 102 members of the public that died in work related incidents throughout 2014/15.

Judith Hackitt, chair of HSE, has said of the figures:

“It is disappointing last year’s performance on fatal injuries has not been matched, but the trend continues to be one of improvement. Our systems and our framework remain strong as demonstrated by our performance in comparison to other countries.

“Every fatality is a tragic event and our commitment to preventing loss of life in the workplace remains unaltered. All workplace fatalities drive HSE to develop even more effective interventions to reduce death, injury and ill health.”

Source: BritSafe

New ‘Revenge Porn’ Laws See 13 Sentenced Since April

The rise in the number of smart phone users has recently led to a vast increase in the amount of individuals sharing intimate videos & photographs of their ex partners online. Since April this year ‘revenge porn’, as it is now commonly known, has been a criminal offence in both England and Wales. This new legislation defines ‘revenge porn’ as the following:

“Photographs or films which show people engaged in sexual activity or depicted in a sexual way or with their genitals exposed, where what is shown would not usually be seen in public.

“And which are distributed without the person’s consent, with the intent of causing embarrassment or distress.”

Individuals can now be jailed for up to 2 years for circulating any intimate images or footage online without consent. An individual can also be jailed for showing someone else a physical image or for circulating a personal image via email or text message.

Previously there had been no laws in place for ‘revenge porn’. Instead prosecutors would endeavour to press charges against offenders using various different laws. Such laws have included the Malicious Communications Act 1988, the Protection from Harassment Act 1997 and sections of the Communications Act 2003.

However, since the new law came into place in April, around twelve men have been convicted for the offence of ‘revenge porn’. Just recently the first woman in the UK was sentenced for posting intimate photos of her partner on Facebook, following a dispute.

Numerous campaigners for the new legislation are hopeful that this law will discourage individuals from spreading videos and images on the web without consent.

Maria Miller, Culture Secretary at the time the law was passed, has previously said:

“By putting this in place, the government has given young women the opportunity to protect themselves from their lives being blighted.

“When you speak to the victims of these crimes, many say that it feels as if you’ve been virtually raped.”

David Cameron has also voiced his support on the new law. Last July, during a debate in the House of Commons, the Prime Minister described ‘revenge porn’ as a ‘dreadful, appalling offence’ that ‘clearly has criminal intent’.

Sexual Abuse Claims – Expert Advice

Hampson Hughes Solicitors specialises in directing sexual abuse claims in a considerate and compassionate manner. Our Abuse & Criminal Injuries Department is headed by Greg Neill – Greg is a member of the Association of Child Abuse Lawyers (ACAL).

For an open and friendly conversation about your situation, and to find out how we can assist you relevant to your individual experience, call 0800 888 6 888 or email info@hh-law.co.uk

You will be given the direct-dial of your case handler, meaning that you will always be able to reach the person you need.

Source: Mail Online

Landlord fined for Carbon Monoxide exposure risk

A Manchester-based property company has been fined after putting tenants in a home in Ashton-under-Lyne at risk.

Rent4U Ltd was investigated and prosecuted by the Health and Safety Executive for the condition of the boiler in the house. HSE classified the state of the boiler as ‘immediately dangerous’ as it exposed the tenants to the risk of carbon monoxide poisoning. The residents of the house, which is located on Marlborough Street, are a woman and her young son.

It transpired that Rent4U had been served with two improvement notices by the HSE in 2013 after failing to arrange annual gas safety checks in two other properties. For this particular house, they had not arranged one from 2007-14.

Fines

Trafford Magistrates’ Court fined Rent4U Ltd, of Christie Way, Christie Fields a sum of £4,000 and ordered the firm to pay £7,000 in costs. The landlord pleaded guilty to breaches of the Gas Safety Regulations 1998.

If the property you are living in is in a state of disrepair, whether dangerous or unsanitary, do not hesitate to contact our team for specialist advice on 0800 888 6888 or email info@HH-law.co.uk.

Scottish Government: Child Abuse Inquiry

The Association of Child Abuse Lawyers (ACAL) has recently been advised by the White Flowers ALBA survivors group that the Scottish Government intend to establish an inquiry into institutional child abuse.

There have been previous jurisdiction and limitation issues faced by English lawyers when looking into such cases. It is hoped that this inquiry will lead to a redress scheme.

The White Flowers ALBA survivor group is a campaign group that was set up to support victims of child abuse. The White Flowers group are looking to gather as many expressions of interest from clients as possible to enable the enquiry to begin its work.

Hampson Hughes Solicitors specialises in directing sexual abuse claims in a considerate and compassionate manner. Our Abuse & Criminal Injuries Department is headed by Greg Neill, an expert in this area and a member of the ACAL.

If you have been a victim of institutional child abuse within Scotland, please contact our Head of Abuse & Criminal Injuries, Greg Neill, directly on 0151 242 1069 or 07702 256 291 or you can email via gregneill@hh-law.co.uk for free initial advice on the next steps in taking legal action.

83 Year Old Man Jailed 40 Years after Child Abuse

An 83 year old man from Kent has been jailed for 20 years for sexually abusing his 5 year old daughter; 40 years after the offence took place.

Canterbury Crown Court heard how the man, who cannot be named for legal reasons, gave his 5 year old daughter a date rape drug and then sexually assaulted her.

Blind Man’s Bluff

In a police interview that was played to the court, the victim details how she was blind folded by her father. This lead the victim to believe they were going to play a game, however her father then proceeded to sexually assault her.

Speaking in the interview, the victim said:

“He then put a blindfold over my eyes. I didn’t know what was going on, I thought he was going to play Blind Man’s Bluff.

“He then told me not to say anything to my brothers and sisters because if I did men in white coats would come and take me away.”

She added:

“He was very, very strict. The slightest thing you would have done, like breaking a cup, he would line us up as kids. He would then pace up and down with his arms behind his back.”

Physical Abuse

The woman also described how her father would hit her with a belt buckle or slipper, often causing abrasions and had abused a step daughter.

The court also heard that at one time, the woman was raped by the coalman as her father watched. The woman told how the coalman came to deliver fuel, and her father offered her up for sex to him.

He lifted up her dress and said:

“You can have sex with her.”

The 83 year old defendant apparently shook his head as he was sentenced to 20 years in jail.

Judge Adele Williams told him:

“It’s no good you shaking your head at me. I heard the evidence from your victims who you humiliated and degraded.

“What you did was cruel, brutal and perverted and it went on for many years.”

The judge stated that the father had had offered one child to another man for sex and shown another pornography.

The judge added:

“This conduct was frequent and accompanied by violence, including beatings with implements and your hands.

“You dominated the household – ruling by fear and intimidation. You were a dictator. One of your sons, who gave evidence on your behalf, described you as an evil b*****d.”

The man used his daughter as ‘little more than a sex toy’, the judge told the court.

She stated:

“You have shown no remorse. You have no insight and continue to deny the offences in the face of overwhelming evidence.

“You are unrepentant and manipulative and you have the deceptive veneer of respectability, the classic hallmarks of the committed paedophile.”

Sexual Abuse Claims – Expert Advice

Hampson Hughes Solicitors specialises in directing sexual abuse claims in a considerate and compassionate manner. Our Abuse & Criminal Injuries Department is headed by Greg Neill – Greg is a member of the Association of Child Abuse Lawyers (ACAL).

For an open and friendly conversation about your situation, and to find out how we can assist you relevant to your individual experience, call 0800 888 6 888 or email info@hh-law.co.uk

You will be given the direct-dial of your case handler, meaning that you will always be able to reach the person you need.

Source: Mail Online