Campaigning trade association SELECT has welcomed the results of the latest consultation on regulation of the electrical industry in Scotland, which again shows an overwhelming majority of respondents in favour of legislation.
The outcome of the latest Government consultation, which closed on 12 February, reveals that, out of the 100 organisations and individuals who took part, the “vast majority” thought that voluntary measures don’t work and that regulation was required.
And Scotland’s largest construction trade association insists the latest findings are another pivotal step in the long-running campaign for legislative action.
Alan Wilson, Managing Director, said: “There is a sense that the campaign is gathering increasing momentum and the strength of the consultation responses illustrates that our conviction is shared by the majority of those in the sector.
“While we would all like to think that voluntary action would work, it’s quite clear from the responses that the sector needs government legislation to bring about ‘comfort and security’ for customers across the country and end the scourge of unqualified people passing themselves off as electrical professionals.
“We have been hugely encouraged by the levels of support we have received, particularly cross-party parliamentary support, and the impressive range of people who have publicly backed us through channels such as our Wall of Support.
“The result of this consultation is another enormously significant advance and we would like to thank all those parties who took part.”
The encouraging results were revealed to members of the parliamentary Electricians Working Group in a letter from Jamie Hepburn MSP, the Minister for Business, Fair Work and Skills, who set up the consultation. Mr Hepburn’s letter revealed that, of the 100 responses, 40 were from organisations and 44 were from individuals, the majority of whom were in favour of regulation.
The Minister now wants the Working Group to reconvene to discuss the responses and says that it will be the responsibility of whoever holds his office after the Holyrood elections in May to decide the next steps.
The results follow a previous consultation by Conservative MSP Jamie Halcro Johnston, which closed on November 10 last year and received more than 140 submissions, more than 90 per of which were positive.
Alan added: “Poor quality electrical work carries huge risks and it is vital that both businesses and consumers are able to make informed choices whenever they employ an electrician. These responses add enormous substance to that imperative.
“It has been clear to the industry for years that those who work in the industry must do so in a safe and competent manner.”
SELECT has been campaigning for years with other leading industry bodies, such as the Scottish Joint Industry Board (SJIB) and Scottish Electrical Charitable Training Trust (SECTT), to ensure that those who work in the industry do so in a safe and competent manner.
Its campaign, which has been raised in the Scottish Parliament, is being backed by membership bodies, industry figures, professional services and individuals from across the country – and has received unprecedented levels of cross-party support from politicians.
An in-depth brochure about its campaign, entitled Why is regulation of the industry so important to Scotland?, was recently updated with the latest developments and facts and figures, and can be found on the dedicated regulation web page here.
An analysis of the responses in the new consultation can also be found here.