Call for increased awareness by senior management in social housing of Corporate Manslaughter responsibilities
The important issue of Corporate Manslaughter was addressed by Sally Roff of DAC Beachcroft, who has been involved with the preparation of responses to the Corporate Manslaughter Bill.
“Knowledge and awareness of responsibilities at a senior level within social housing are key,” she said. “It is not a defence to say that you didn’t know about what is happening in your organisation or that you didn’t know of your responsibilities. A court would presume you have that level of knowledge. Only three companies have ever been convicted of Corporate Manslaughter, but one judge has made it quite clear that any company that was convicted, would have the level of fine set at such a height that is would ensure the company went out of business.”
Sally drew attention to the individual liability of Directors and senior management as well as companies but stressed that the key is effective management, minimising risk through planning, delivery, monitoring and review.