Use Corporate Probation to punish companies that kill, law firm says20 October 2006
Corporate Probation is the most effective way to punish a company convicted of Corporate Manslaughter, leading trade union law firm Thompsons has said.
In a briefing published as the Corporate Manslaughter and Corporate Homicide Bill goes into its committee stage in Parliament, the firm suggests that Probation Orders, similar to those used in Canada, are a more flexible and innovative alternative to fines.
The Bill proposes only fines and remedial orders as penalties.
A probation Order, imposed by a court, might require a company which has been convicted of corporate manslaughter after the death of a worker to review its safety policy and procedures, initiate a training programme for directors and senior management or others and require a reduction in accidents. If, after completion of the probationary period, the company has satisfied the terms of the Order that is the end of the matter. But if it fails to co-operate or comply, the suspended sentence could be invoked and further penalties could be imposed, including, if felt desirable, the disqualification of directors.
The existence of the probation Order would also be noted against the names of company directors in records held at Companies House.
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