Prof. Diana Kloss recently spoke to the North West Society of Occupational Medicine regional group on the impact of Brexit at the Bentley Motors factory in Crewe.
In her talk Prof. Kloss explained the legal position of the government and its relationship to Parliament and the courts. She reviewed the White Paper on the Great Repeal Bill and tried to predict what new legislation will be needed. She emphasised that workers' rights both in health and safety and employment law were enshrined in law both before the UK joined the EU, and during UK membership and that these rights may be reviewed after the UK leaves.
In particular, some provisions of the Working Time Regulations, the Agency Regulations and TUPE are unpopular with business and may be amended. Special consideration was given to the General Data Protection Regulation which will come into force throughout the EU in May 2018. It is likely that the UK will need to make substantial amendments to the Data Protection Act.
Members were impressed by the Occupational Health (OH) service provided by Bentley, including access to physiotherapy in the workplace and counselling through an Employee Assistance Programme. This was a great example of the diversity of working in OH. To join the SOM NW Group go to https://www.som.org.uk/membership.
Diana Kloss is a barrister and part-time chairman of Employment Tribunals in Manchester. She is also an Honorary Senior Lecturer in Occupational Health Law at the University of Manchester.
Diana will also be speaking at an event on the implications of Brexit on UK workplace/workforce health on 10th May. See https://www.rsm.ac.uk/events/events-listing/2016-2017/sections/occupational-medicine-section/omh03-occupational-health-in-a-global-market.aspx