§ Mr. Madden
asked the Secretary of State for Employment if he will introduce legislation whereby the intended use of any new chemical material is notified to the Health and Safety Commission to allow a full investigation of the material to be undertaken, particularly into any associated health risks.
§ Mr. John Grant
I am informed by the Chairman of the Health and Safety Commission that under Section 6 of the Health and Safety at Work etc Act 1974 manufacturers, importers and suppliers of substances for use at work are obliged to carry out such testing and examination of substances that they supply as are necessary to ensure they can be used safely and without risk to health. Manufacturers are also obliged under the section to carry out necessary research with a view to discovering new risks associated with substances they supply and to reducing or eliminating known risks.
In addition, the Health and Safety Executive is working on proposals for a notification scheme for new chemical substances which is designed to complement manufacturers', importers' and suppliers' duties under the Act.