What does the new building safety bill mean for local government?
The tragic events that took place at Grenfell Tower back in 2017 have had a ripple effect throughout building and fire regulations, both in the UK and Wales.
The latest movement made to toughen health and safety laws can be seen within the Building Safety Bill, which was introduced to the House of Commons in July of 2021.
This ground-breaking step in reform puts residents and homeowners into the front seat, giving them more rights, powers, and protections – with the intention of making homes across the country safer.
This new bill will overhaul existing regulations and create lasting generational change.
It also sets out the framework to improve compliance, with tougher penalties for those who break the rules.
What does this mean for local government?
The Bill establishes the need for Building Safety Regulators (BSR) within the Health and Safety Executive to implement the new, more stringent, regulatory regime for higher-risk buildings – these include care homes and hospitals over 18 meters high.
The BSR will need to oversee the safety and performance of all buildings, assisting and encouraging competence among the built environment industry, as well as registered building inspectors.
As for any new building projects undergone following the release of this bill, they will have to pass through three regulatory Gateways in relation to safety – at the planning stage, the final design stage (before construction can begin) and immediately before occupation when construction is complete.
You can find the key messages from the published bill, here.
What does this mean for hiring managers?
With this increased level of expertise now needed to achieve building compliance, heads of department and hiring managers will have to develop and train their existing staff, if there is capacity within the existing team to take on the extra workload.
If you’re in a position where you don’t have the time or resource to develop your existing team, you’ll likely have to start considering the need to recruit for positions such as Building and Resident Safety Manager and Fire Safety Compliance Manager.
Unlike regular health and safety professionals within government, these recruits will have a different set of skill requirements to look out for during the hiring process.
If you would like to find out more about how your workforce will need to prepare for this new bill, and to better understand the talent market for these roles, our expert resourcing team are experienced in finding and attracting these candidates. Contact us today!