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FACK comment on the accidental death conclusion by jury at the inquest into the death of Cyran Justin Stewart

Families Against Corporate Killers (FACK)  news release 24 January 2018 – no embargo

Accidental Death conclusion by jury at  the inquest into the death of Cyran Justin Stewart, fatally injured at work on  24.2.14, died on 28.2.14

Cyran Stewart was fatally injured at a Walkabout pub in Swansea on 24th February 2014. He was crushed in a lift while transporting furniture, was rescued after 30 minutes but died of his injuries four days later in hospital.  The inquest heard evidence that other members of staff had been trapped but not injured in the lift in similar ways when transporting furniture and the safety gate mechanism over ridden before Cyran was killed, but these were not reported to the health and safety consultants or head office.  Intertain CEO gave evidence that he was shocked and they knew nothing of these incidents or lift problems when moving furniture.

The jury delivered a conclusion of accidental death.

Cyran Stewart’s mother Elizabeth Galbraith said in her statement after the Inquest Conclusion:

“I feel totally disillusioned by the Inquest System. It took 4 years to get this far and I had to sit in that Inquest and hear witness after witness have the statements they made 4 years ago discredited because they could not now remember facts without referring to their statement.

“My son Cyran did not die in a freak accident that could not be foreseen or prevented, but in an incident similar to several others that had previously occurred and about which I believe management and supervisors were aware. We heard evidence that the Walkabout management team failed to report numerous incidents involving staff being stuck in the lift to Perry Scott Nash, their Health and Safety consultants.  I believe they knew what was going on but did not report it or take any action.  Had they done so, I believe that action could have been taken to prevent my son from being in that situation in the first place and prevented his death.

“Following the death of my son, that action has now been taken.  It will prevent further deaths but it will never bring Cyran back.

“Those responsible for Cyran’s health and safety while he was at work, but who failed to protect him can now go home and carry on with their lives.   I cannot, my life has been totally destroyed and the closeness of my family has been pulled apart.

“My son died as innocent as the day he was born, I will never see him get married or have children, I have been denied that pleasure.”

Hilda Palmer FACK spokesperson said: “ No-one should ever die just for going to work which is why we have health and safety laws to protect workers which include assessing risks, developing safe systems of work, instructing, training and supervising workers to make sure they follow these safe systems properly, reporting incidents, injuries and near misses, so as to take preventative action.  Cyran was not killed in a freak, unforeseeable and unpreventable accident.  According to evidence at the inquest he died after several other ‘near miss’ incidents where workers and supervisors were also trapped in the lift and had to be rescued.  Appropriate reports of these dangerous incidents were not made, the health and safety consultants and CEO were apparently unaware, and so preventative action was not taken – until after Cyran was killed.

Yet again we hear of a case where something has gone wrong, a worker is killed and his family devastated, forever.  Workers should not die before lessons are learnt. The legal duty is clear and we call on all employers everywhere to face up to, and review, your health and safety management and take urgent action to stop your work from killing or hurting anyone.  The Inquest is only concerned with who died, when, where and how, and any other matters are for the health and safety investigation to consider.  For Cyran’s mother we hope now for a swift decision on a  prosecution of those responsible for protecting Cyran’s safety at work.”

See the full statement by Elizabeth Galbraith below

For more information contact Hilda Palmer FACK 0161 636 7557 mobile 079298 00240

Elizabeth Galbraith, mother of Cyran Stewart, mobile number on request

FACK was set up in 2006 by families of those killed at work to support other families, to get as much justice and possible and to campaign to stop workplace deaths. .

Founder Members of FACK:

Dawn and Paul Adams son Samuel Adams aged 6 killed at Trafford Centre, 10th October 1998

Linzi Herbertsonhusband Andrew Herbertson 29, killed at work in Oldham, January 1998

Mike and Lynne Hutin son Andrew Hutin 20, killed at work at Corus, Port Talbot on 8th Nov 2001

Mick & Bet Murphyson Lewis Murphy 18, killed at work in Brighton on 21st February 2004

Louise Taggart brother Michael Adamson 26, killed at work ion Aberdeen, on 4th August 2005

Linda Whelanson Craig Whelan 23, (and Paul Wakefield) killed at work in Bolton on 23rd May 2002

Dorothy & Douglas Wrightson Mark Wright 37, killed at work in Deeside on 13th April 2005

At the end of the Inquest into the death of Cyran Justin  Stewart

PRESS STATEMENT by Elizabeth Galbraith,  Mother of Cyran Justin  Stewart

Background

Early hours on 24th Feb 2014 I received a phone call from Cyran’s very distraught brother and also from South Wales Police, informing me that Cyran was in a critical state as he had been stuck in a lift, had to be resuscitated twice and that I had to attend Morrison hospital Swansea urgently.

It was the longest journey of my life as at that time I lived in Telford Shropshire, and was breaking my heart wondering if I would be able to get there in time, wondering if I would see my baby alive again.

When I got to the hospital, I was rushed to ICU where Cyran was on a life support machine and heavily sedated fighting for his life.  His 3 older brothers Kelfyn, Gavin & Jason were also there.  Our lives had been shattered and I could not understand or believe that my baby was in this state.

For four days and night our hopes were raised and shattered once more. We had to watch his body die and on the morning of 28th February the consultant gathered us all together and the decision was taken from me.  His life support machine was switched off, and waiting for him to die tore me apart.  He died at 13.05.  I kissed his lips and I knew I could never tell him again how much I loved him, or see his wonderful eyes or see his smiling face ever again.

Tribute to Cyran

Cyran was a very intelligent young man.  He was born in Germany and loved to support Bayern Munich. In time I believe he would have spent his life in Germany as he always wanted to return at some point.

His father abandoned him at the age of 4. Cyran sought to have a father figure but that was not to be and so I was mum, dad, everything I could possibly be and used to take him on many holidays and encourage a normal lifestyle.

When the Olympic Games were on it was guaranteed that I would return home and find a track imprinted in the grass, pan lids and broom handles in the garden replicating the discus and javelin events that he had watched on TV.  It kept him fit and amused.

He had a high IQ and was considered gifted and talented at school but if he did not want to do something he would not. He loved animals and wanted to be a vet at some point but changed his mind and went to Bradford University to do a degree in Computer Science.

He spent the majority of his time in Shifnal with his mates from School playing football, especially his best pal Nick as he would stay up till all hours on the x box and play on online games communicating with others and listening to music.

He never failed to attend school provided transport was organised.  He was very good at maths and many other topics and he kept very neat books with excellent marks, which was the opposite of his bedroom.

After only completing 2 years at university he was not happy and wanted to come home and be close to his mates. I asked his brother to find him permanent work at Walkabout as I did not want him to become idle, never for one moment thinking it would result in his death.

The Inquest

I feel totally disillusioned by the Inquest System. It took 4 years to get this far and I had to sit in that Inquest and hear witness after witness have the statements they made 4 years ago discredited because they could not now remember facts without referring to their statement.

My son Cyran did not die in a freak accident that could not be foreseen or prevented, but in an incident similar to several others that had previously occurred and about which I believe management and supervisors were aware. We heard evidence that the Walkabout management team failed to report numerous incidents involving staff being stuck in the lift to Perry Scott Nash, their Health and Safety consultants.  I believe they knew what was going on but did not report it or take any action.  Had they done so, I believe that action could have been taken to prevent my son from being in that situation in the first place and prevented his death.

Following the death of my son, that action has now been taken.  It will prevent further deaths but it will never bring Cyran back.

Those responsible for Cyran’s health and safety while he was at work, but who failed to protect him can now go home and carry on with their lives.   I cannot, my life has been totally destroyed and the closeness of my family has been pulled apart.

My son died as innocent as the day he was born, I will never see him get married or have children, I have been denied that pleasure.

Hazards conference 2018 – sponsorship appeal

We are grateful for the generous support for Hazards 2017 by our sponsors in Unions nationally, regionally, at branches, trades councils, individuals, and union-linked personal injury solicitors.

We hope this vital support will continue for Hazards 2018.

Feedback was excellent from 350 safety reps and activists, around half of whom were new delegates, from all types of workplaces, all unions, and from all over the UK, coming  together to discuss  ‘Organising health, safety and welfare in an insecure world’.

Hazards Conference is the UK’s biggest and best educational and organising event for trade union safety reps and activists from all different sectors, trade unions, organisations and workplaces.  Delegates have a unique opportunity to prioritise and concentrate on health and safety concerns and talk to national and international health and safety campaigners, activists and trade unionists.

At Hazards 2017 we were privileged to have Jessica Martinez speaking.  Jessica is the director of US COSH, which is facing major challenges because of the deregulatory agenda of the Trump regime and the cut to funding to their organisation.  In addition there have been a number of huge hurricanes which have not only cost lives but absolutely devastated local communities and environments and caused major occupation safety catastrophes. Dan Shears, GMB National Health, Safety and Environment Director gave an overview of how UK occupational health and safety will be affected by Brexit.

The conference is an opportunity to hear from workers and organisers involved in industrial action about current health, safety and welfare issues.  The ‘Better than zero’ organiser Bryan Simpson spoke passionately about their inspirational campaigning work and  Barry Faulkner on the Sports Direct action.  Paul Maloney the author of ‘The Therapy Industry’, addressed a session on individual therapy vs collective action. Helen Lynn from Alliance for Cancer Prevention and Susan Murray from Unite spoke at a meeting on ‘Towards zero work-related cancer’. There were various campaign meetings: on asbestos, workplace welfare, international solidarity, dangers of dogs, and FACK. There were also legal updates given by different solicitors on various health and safety issues and speakers from Unison, Prospect and Usdaw. There was a choice of eighteen workshops, and many first time representatives that were able to gain new knowledge and skills to take back to their workplaces.  We try to ensure there are several new workshops each year.

Tracey Seward (FACK) and her brother Mick Lancaster spoke emotionally about the devastating impact of the death of her husband Mark on their family and daughter Daisy. Finally we launched the Hazards Campaign e-postcards ‘We love red tape, it’s better than bloody bandages’ campaign, against deregulation.  www.hazardscampaign.org.uk/postcards   A full report of the conference can be found at www.hazardscampaign.org.uk

Please find a copy of all the organisations that sponsored the conference this year, on the reverse of this appealThe sponsorship is extremely important as it means that we can keep down the price of the conference to individuals and union branches.  Please consider our appeal positively.

BACS payments are available or cheques made payable to Hazards 2018, and sent to: Hazards 2018, GMHC, Windrush Millennium Centre, 70 Alexandra Road, Manchester, M16 7WD.  Telephone: 0161 636 7558, Email: hazconf@gmhazards.org.uk

Thank you in advance for your support.

Hazards conference 2018 sponsorship appeal – PDF

Tories Out march, Sunday 1st October, Manchester: Hazards Campaign bloc and banner

Join the  Hazards Campaign in Manchester on Sunday 1st October where we will be marching behind our new banner at the Tories Out march at the Tory Party Conference in Manchester.

Join us to tell the Government : “We love red tape – it’s better than bloody bandages”

We  invite you to join us and to dress up in bloodied (fake blood or similar) bandages – there should be lots of Halloween costumes available in the shops if you don’t feel creative).

If you are lucky you may even get a  photo with Janet in her bandages… for the price of a postcard!

We are organising a table for the beginning of the march to encourage people to sign postcards – telling the Government : “We love red tape it’s better than bloody bandages” and “enough is enough.”

Meeting place  If possible we will our table up near to the Museum of Science and Industry end of Liverpool Road. If we can’t do that please ring one of the numbers below and keep an eye on @hazardscampaign and @jnewsham

Order of the day  We aim to set up our table  at about 10.00.  Speeches start at 11.30 at Castlefield Arena. The demo forms up on Liverpool Rd at 13.30  leaving at 14.00 with closing speeches at Piccadilly Gardens at 15.45 – 16.30.

Best wishes,

Janet Newsham – Hazards Campaign/GMHC

Janet Newsham 07734 317158
Hilda Palmer 07929 800240

ACTION : #TUC17 congress debate on regulation and safety this afternoon

Hazards Campaigners,

There is a  debate on Regulation and safety at #TUC17 this afternoon (Monday 11th) that supports  our message. It’s an excellent  opportunity to get more Enough is Enough ecards sent to PM and increase the pressure.

Please tweet and retweet this afternoon (Monday 11th) around 2pm onwards using the #tuc17 and retweet  @hazardscampaign   @jnewsham

Sample Tweets:

Paste and copy and tweet:

#TUC17 Regulation & Safety:  Hazards Campaign calls for an end to deregulation & undermining of health & safety http://www.hazardscampaign.org.uk/postcard

#TUC17 Support Regulation & Safety debate: Send a Hazards Campaign Enough is enough ecard http://www.hazardscampaign.org.uk/postcard

#TUC17 Deregulation is deadly, at Grenfell, at work, everywhere.  Enough is enough, stop deregulation http://www.hazardscampaign.org.uk/postcard

Or make up your own and add #tuc17 and the link http://www.hazardscampaign.org.uk/postcard 

THANK YOU

Hilda and Janet

 

Hazards 2017 closing plenary 2017 part 2

Hazards 2017 closing plenary part 1

Workshops and campaign meetings – selected Tweets

ePostcard campaign: Tell Theresa May “Enough is enough”

To coincide with  the national Hazards Conference 2017 (28-30 July) the Hazards Campaign has launched an ePostcard Campaign to tell the Prime Minister that “Enough is enough.”

As the nation watched in horror as fire ripped through Grenfell Tower, questions about government culpability were being asked. The Conservatives have discarded critical fire, building, product, environmental and workplace safety protections and shackled and starved regulators. A government with a criminal disregard for human life has now been left with blood on its hands.

The Hazards Campaign warned the government repeatedly that its ideological obsession with cutting red tape is a deadly mistake. After the Grenfell disaster the Hazards Campaign says: “Enough is enough. Stop undermining the laws that protect us.”

Click here to send the Prime Minister the Enough is enough epostcard 

Printed copies of the postcard will be also made available at the 28-30 July Hazards 2017 conference – alternatively you can write to the Hazards Campaign

Background  Tower block inferno must mean an end to the Tory deregulation fetish, Hazards magazine, 138 July 2017

Hazards opening plenary session 28 July 2017 – selected Tweets

Hazards conference 2017 programme

Hazards 2017 Programme – Organising health, safety and welfare in an insecure world

Friday 28th July

13.00 – 19.30                      Delegates arrival and Registration

Choose and sign-up for ONE Saturday Campaign meeting at Registration  Listed here.

17.00 – 19.30                       Evening Meal

19.30 – 21.00                       Opening Plenary in Westminster Theatre

Chair:  Doug Russell, USDAW; opening remarks  Speakers: Janet Newsham, Hazards Campaign: Welcome and Conference arrangements; Jessica Martinez, Director National COSH, USA; Dan Shears, GMB; Tracey Seward, FACK;   Mick Lancaster GMB/FACK

Saturday 29th July

07.30 – 9.00                            Registration for later arrivals/non-residential delegates

07.00 – 08.45                          Breakfast

09.00 – 10.30                          First Workshop Session

10.30– 11.00                           Tea/Coffee Break

11.00 – 12.30                          Second Workshop Session

12.30 – 14.00                           Lunch

14.00 – 15.45                          Three Meetings

  1. Challenging the individual therapy view versus collective action to prevent work causing mental ill-health
    Chair:  Hugh Robertson, TUC; Speaker: Paul Maloney,  Psychologist,  author of ‘The Therapy Industry’
  2. Towards zero work-related cancer Chair: Kathy Jenkins, Scottish Hazards; Speakers:  Helen Lynn Alliance for Cancer Prevention;  Susan Murray UNITE
  3. Using new methods of organising on health and safety Chair: Janet Newsham, GM Hazards Centre; Speakers: Barry Faulkner, UNITE; Gareth Lane BFAWU;  Michael Newman, Leigh Day;  Bryan Simpson,  Better than Zero.

15.45 – 16.00                           Tea/Coffee Break

16.00 – 17.30                           Campaign Meetings   – Room allocation signs are displayed at Registration

19.00 – 20.30                             Dinner          

Sunday 30th July

07.30 – 09.15                          Breakfast

Clear rooms- bring cases to secure room in registration area

10.00 – 12.00                           Closing Plenary in Westminster theatre

Chair: Hazards Campaign:  ‘Enough is Enough: End deregulation now !

Speakers: Matt Wrack, General Secretary, FBU, Hazards Campaign; Others tbc;

12.00 – 13.30                          Packed Lunch – eat with us or take away & depart

Don’t forget to complete an evaluation form and leave it at registration.

27th to 29th July Hazards 2018 at Keele University

Leave a self-addressed envelope at registration to be kept informed.

And check on Hazards Campaign website: http://www.hazardscampaign.org.uk   #Haz2017


29 July Campaign Meetings 16.00 – 17.30

Choose ONE and then Sign up at Registration

  1. Internnal solidarity to combat attacks on workers; lives and health

Main health and safety  problems facing workers worldwide including Brexit, CETA and the alphabet soup of other toxic ‘free trade;’ treaties Developing Global Occupational Safety and Health Networks GOSH to fight back.

Chair: Kathy Jenkins, Scottish Hazards; Speakers: Jessica Martinez, USA National COSH

  1. Campaigning against Asbestos in schools, in all workplaces, in UK and globally

Update on campaigning locally, nationally and globally to get asbestos banned globally, to get asbestos removed from schools and other workplaces and for better treatment and compensation for sufferers.

Chair:  Philip Lewis LASAG and LHC; Speakers Sarah Lyons, Joint Union Asbestos Committee   (JUAC)/NUT; Harminder Bains, Leigh Day Solicitors; Graham Dring, Chair of Asbestos Victims            Support             Groups

  1. Update on the legal state of health and safety

Recent legal changes to legal aid, tribunals, personal injury/ work-death, stress cases, TU Bill, and their implications for workers and union safety reps.

Chair: tbc; Speakers: Satinder Bains and Keith Cundall, Irwin Mitchell

  1. Dogs can be dangerous

Raising awareness of  the hazards of dogs to workers who call or enter a premises, the preventative measures developed jointly CWU and Royal Mail to reduce the risk – prevent serious injuries or death. What union safety reps can do in discussions with their employers to improve policies or improve them to protect workers.

Chair: Lynsey Mann, GMB:  Speakers Andrew Hickerman and Tony Pedal, CWU

  1. Work-Related Death, supporting families and fighting back

What FACK does in supporting families after a work-death and advocating for them through the      investigation, inquest and any prosecutions.  Using our stories in campaigning and how supporting solicitors        provide essential legal representation to ensure equality of arms at Inquests.  Issues arising from Grenfell.

Chair: Hilda Palmer, FACK, Speakers: Tracey Seward, Michael Lancaster FACK members; Helen Clifford, McMillan Williams Solicitors. Families Against Corporate Killers , FACK, is supported by TU donations and sponsorship from Irwin Mitchell and McMillan Williams solicitors.

  1. Whatever happened to welfare ?

Welfare at work – it’s the poor relation to Health and Safety these days.  What happened to the lunch hour?  Has your tea-break been sold?  Do you eat lunch at your desk these days – where did staff common rooms or canteens go? Share our experience of reduced welfare facilities at work.  What else should we demand from employers? Let’s make improved welfare provision a workplace campaign this year.

Chair Janet Newsham; Speaker John Bamford, GM Hazards Centre

  1. Air pollution as a Workplace issue

Air pollution is a public health emergency and is linked to at least 40,000 deaths on the UK each year.  It is a workplace issue taken up by the Greener Jobs Alliance, UCU and Hazards Campaign. What can we do about it as union safety reps?

Chair Caroline Bedale; Speaker Adam Lincoln, UCU Health, Safety and Sustainability Advisor