CIAT response to the Building Safety Bill

CIAT supports the principles behind the Building Safety Bill and what it is trying to achieve; however there are areas within the Bill which causes us considerable concern.

Our summary reads as follows:

CIAT wholeheartedly supports the principles behind the Building Safety Bill and what it is trying to achieve; and as such is a key player in the response to the Hackitt Review and the changes necessary to protect life.

It is critical that the Industry works collaboratively to raise competence across the board and instills integrity and responsibility across teams working together to construct, develop and maintain structures.

Many of the proposals, including the Homes Ombudsman, are excellent and once the secondary legislation is drafted, we will be able to comment in more detail on the implementation in a proportionate and balanced way.

We are particularly pleased to see the opportunity to shift the focus from "high rise" to "high risk". There are, however, areas within the Bill which cause us considerable concern, some of which we consider should not fall within this Bill. Some of these proposals will have significant impact and require other legislation to be scrutinised independently with a view to achieving the objective without compromising other facets. It is also essential that any recommended changes can be realistically achieved; we are not convinced that issuing a Bill that is proposing changes across so many areas and jurisdictions is the right vehicle for implementing workable and effective solutions. We have noted proposals to change no less than eleven pieces of legislation, some of them without consideration to their effectiveness, or wider implications when put into context.

In the amendment papers following the Committee stages we are aware of a raft of proposed additions to the Bill. From our reading, these could be brought in without scrutiny. With such a fundamental piece of legislation which has consequences, some of which may be unintended, it is essential that these proposals are scoped out properly with full scrutiny and consultation before they should be considered as accepted.

For example: we note that the recommendations to change Defective Premises Act and Limitation Act were inserted without consulation, and it seems, without assessing the impact. It is also questionable as to whether this will achieve its objective, and even whether the amendments are achievable. 

Due to the wide-ranging areas addressed in the Bill, CIAT is reviewing the following areas of particular interest:

  • Golden Thread
  • HSE as Regulator
  • Product Testing
  • Construction Products Regulation
  • Amendments to Defective Premises Act and Limitation Act
  • BSB/Architects' Act
  • CDM Regulations
  • UK Internal Market Act 2020
  • CDM/PD
  • Competences

To read the Institute's full response, download the document here.

Tags (Specialism/Topics)

CIAT Building Safety