Cathy Peattie MSP with HSE board member Danny Carrigan, HSE Chief Executive Geoffrey Podger, and Chair of the HSE Judith Hackitt.
On Tuesday evening, 22nd September, Cathy hosted a meeting for the Health and Safety Executive in the Scottish Parliament.
“It was good to get so many people together to discuss how we can improve health and safety in Scotland,” said Cathy.
“There is a lot being done to address poor health and safety, but there are still many problems and I am particularly concerned that Scotland has higher rates than the rest of the UK, fewer successful prosecutions, and relatively low levels of fine being imposed. I think there needs to be a formal initiative that brings together and coordinates health and safety action in Scotland, to maximise the benefits of existing work, and to identify what can be done to address the “Scottish Safety Anomaly”. I know some people think that this is down to a different mix of employment and a different culture, but if that’s the case, let’s not use it as an excuse – we need to tackle the causes.”
Falkirk East MSP Cathy Peattie has called for action on pavement parking and other road safety hazards.
Speaking in a Scottish Parliament debate on road safety, Cathy highlighted the problems pedestrians face because of badly parked vehicles:
“Children are forced to use busy roads when going to and from school. Although we are extremely grateful for the dedication of crossing patrols, the plight of children, the elderly, wheelchair users and those with prams is made worse by obstacles, not the least of which is pavement parking. It is a recipe for an accident when vehicles park on the pavement and pedestrians are forced to use the road. Badly parked vehicles can also make it difficult to see oncoming traffic. More could be done to tackle those problems, perhaps by enforcing existing laws or by creating new byelaws. Failing that, we should consider what legislation we could introduce in the Parliament. We must ensure that people take responsibility for their parking. Motorists should realise the effect that bad parking has on children, young people and others who have to walk on the road. For those who do not take their responsibilities seriously, we need to have recourse to legal remedies.”
Falkirk East MSP Cathy Peattie wants people to be wary of doorstep charity collections.
She has been contacted by a constituent from Whitecross about leaflets being put through the door for an “urgently needed clothing collection”.
“The leaflets contain no company name or contact information,” said Cathy, “but my constituent tracked them down before approaching me. Their company registration number revealed that they are W&W Help Ltd., who were wound up in March for failing to submit accounts. They have since been found leafletting in various locations, requesting donations of old and unwanted clothes to help people in developing or eastern European countries. I understand that that as a result of these activities, they are being investigated by police and Trading Standards.”
“People should be aware that collections like this can be charitable or commercial. Both are legitimate if they work within their respective rules, and you can check them out using their charity registration numbers or company details. Personally though, I would advise caution when approached by doorstep collections. If it’s a charity you don’t know, and you cannot tell or aren’t sure about the collection, it’s safer to recycle clothes or take them to a charity shop.”
Will Scotland be excluded from UK Equality legislation?
UK legislation to tackle inequality and discrimination may not apply in Scotland if the Scottish Government gets its way.