Workplace Report September 2019

Health & safety - HSE Monitor

New head takes over reins of cash-hit safety body

Sarah Albon, the new chief executive of the HSE, took up her post at the beginning of this month. Albon, the previous chief executive officer of the Insolvency Service, replaced David Snowball, who has been acting HSE chief executive since June 2018.

“Sarah Albon’s appointment will provide welcome stability after a long period of interim leadership under David Snowball,” general union GMB national health and safety director Dan Shears told Workplace Report. “Dr Snowball deserves great credit for restoring morale and a clear sense of purpose to HSE. Ms Albon’s challenge now is to build on these foundations by securing a settlement in the next Spending Review which will allow it to focus on its core mission of reducing risk and protecting people without having to manage further decline in resources.”

Last month, an analysis by a new coalition of campaigners,, found that regulators including the HSE were operating with an average of 50% less funding than a decade ago. 

In July, the employers’ organisation CBI called on the government to order a review of HSE capability “as its budget was cut by 40% between 2010 and 2017 and has not had a permanent chief executive since June 2018”.