A report published today in the Hazards journal states that those recovering compensation as a result of a work–related injury or disease have fallen from 219,000 in 2000/2001 to 87,655 in 2011/12.
A fall of approximately 60%.
Whilst one should, in 21st century Britain, be able to go to work and return home uninjured, the fact that so many of those injured at work do not recover damages is troubling. The inference is that many don’t pursue their rightful entitlement through the legal process in the civil courts, either because they are unaware of their rights, or more likely perhaps, at a time of recession, they are worried that by claiming against an employer their employment may be put at risk.
Either way what the figures show is that the oft-pedalled myth that this Government promotes, that there is a ‘compensation culture’ which is ‘spiralling out of control’, is simply wrong.
If one is injured at work through your employer’s lack of care for your safety then you should readily be able to recover financial recompense. After all money is all that be gained, for, alas, we can’t in most cases put you back to the state of health of the day before the accident. The fact that of those with an occupational cancer only 1 in 50 sufferers recover any monies is very disturbing..
This report doesn’t address the Government’s continuing attack on the European health and safety legislation currently protecting workers in the UK. This will, almost certainly, lead to a relaxing of safety standards, thereby injuring more workers. It is noteworthy that in 2012/13 the Health and Safety Executive reported 148 British workers were killed at work, a fall of 24 on the previous year. In 1992 when the European H&S regulations were introduced into the UK, there were almost 300 fatalities in the workplace. Therefore, the legislation is working. For the Government to now seek to water down its effectiveness is misguided and potentially harmful to British workers.
By Personal Injury Lawyer Simon Allen.