Home Affairs & Work & Pensions Sub-Committees Press Notice

Session 2005-06, dated 20 July 2005

Select Committees announce inquiry into draft Corporate Manslaughter Bill

The Home Affairs and Work & Pensions Committees today announce that they are to undertake a joint inquiry 'to consider and report on the Government's draft Corporate Manslaughter Bill'.  They have set up two sub-committees which will work together in scrutinising the draft Bill.

The draft Bill, published by the Government in March, proposes the creation of a new statutory offence of corporate manslaughter, designed to hold "companies and other organisations to account where gross failings by their senior managers have fatal consequences". The new offence would replace the existing common law offence of corporate manslaughter under which it has proved impossible to prosecute large companies with complex management structures. The draft Bill and accompanying documents are available at http://www.homeoffice.gov.uk/docs4/con_corp_mans.html.

Responses to the Home Office consultation have been provided to the Committees and those who responded to that consultation do not need to produce new submissions. However, if they would like their responses to the Home Office consultation to be treated as formal evidence by the Committees (which would, for instance, give the Committees the options of printing them with their report), they must confirm this in writing as soon as possible or, in any event, by 16 September 2005. Any additional evidence they, or any other interested party, wish to submit should also be received by that date and should be drawn up in accordance with the guidelines below.

Notes for Editors:

1. Evidence submitted should:

- if possible, be provided as electronic versions in MS Word or Rich Text format

- include letterhead with full postal address and contact details;

- begin with a one page summary;

- have numbered paragraphs;

- avoid the use of colour or expensive-to-print material;

Material already published elsewhere should not form the basis of a submission, but may be referred to within a proposed memorandum, in which case a hard copy of the published work should be included. Submissions can be sent via homeaffcom@parliament.uk or, by post, to Home Affairs Committee, 7 Millbank, London, SW1P 3JA. Please bear in mind that Committees are not able to investigate individual cases.

The Committee normally, though not always, chooses to publish the written evidence it receives, either by printing the evidence with its Report on the inquiry or by making the evidence publicly available through the Parliamentary Record Office.  If there is any information you believe to be sensitive you should highlight it and explain what harm you believe would result from its disclosure; the Committee will take this into account in deciding whether to publish or further disclose the evidence.

It would be helpful, for Data Protection purposes, if individuals wishing to submit written evidence send their contact details in a covering letter. You should be aware that there may be circumstances in which the House of Commons will be required to communicate information to third parties on request, in order to comply with its obligations under the Freedom of Information Act 2000.