A scheme designed to cut health and safety and fair trading red tape is being introduced to Thomas Cook’s operations in the UK.
The company is working with its local council in Peterborough, where it has its UK headquarters, in a ‘primary authority partnership’, a legally binding agreement that means the council will act as a single point of reference for all fair trading and health and safety regulations.
Thomas Cook legal adviser David Blight said: “The partnership allows us to build on our existing relationship with the council and to operate within applicable legal systems with their support, advice and guidance.
“We are confident that by increasing the council’s understanding of our business operations, there will be less red tape and the council will be better placed to deal with enquiries they receive from other authorities in the country.”
Primary authority is administered by the Local Better Regulation Office (LBRO) which provides advice from a single source when dealing with environmental health, trading standards, health and safety and licensing services.
Businesses run the risk of prosecution if local inspectors disagree about how to interpret regulations. This can also result in discrepancies in protection for consumers, workers and the environment.
LBRO chief executive Graham Russell said: “The legal underpinning of primary authority gives businesses the assurance they require when seeking to comply with regulation. Trust is essential in the business world and primary authority is important thread in the fabric of confidence necessary to encourage growth.”