The TUC has called on the Sun newspaper to look at their facts before criticising health and safety. The call came after the Sun started a campaign to 'Stop the nonsense!' on health and safety amid claims that public bodies have suffered a collective loss of common sense. The campaign was launched with a column by Rod Liddle which made a number of claims, not one of which was about workplace health and safety, and included a number of stories that had already been thoroughly discredited. These include a story that health and safety meant that the police were stopped from rescuing a man in Gosport who subsequently drowned, and that Wimbledon tennis club had stopped spectators using the Murray Mound for safety reasons. TUC director of organisation and services, Paul Nowak, has said 'it is in the workplace that the effects are most felt. By focusing on a few harmless incidents (none of which are anything to do with the workplace) and ignoring the huge problem of people ignoring health and safety requirements the 'brand' of health and safety gets diminished. People see 'health and safety' as stupid rules and barriers, rather than as a framework for protecting those most vulnerable in society. Anyone who has had an injury or an occupational illness will know only too well that there is not an 'overzealous' interpretation of health and safety in the workplace. Quite the opposite. Occupational Cancers still kill between 10 and 20,000 people every year and around 2 million people suffer from ill-health at work. All these are preventable. We need to ensure that health risks are identified and dealt with so that workers and the public are protected.'

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