Association of Personal Injury Lawyers logo
Association of Personal Injury Lawyers

‘Heroism’ Bill makes bad neighbours out of Good Samaritans

17 Jul 2014
APIL news

Government hype about a new Bill to protect ‘everyday heroes’ will put vulnerable people at risk, lawyers have warned ahead of a parliamentary debate on the Bill on Monday (21 July).

The Social Action, Responsibility and Heroism Bill is a license for have-a-go heroes to cause needless injury, for volunteers who work with children and elderly people to escape proper vetting, and for rogue bosses to dodge their responsibilities to look after their employees, said the Association of Personal Injury Lawyers (APIL).

“The fact that this Bill adds nothing to the current law and is therefore a waste of parliamentary time is bad enough,” said APIL president John Spencer.

“But the real danger is that populist Government rhetoric about the Bill will lead people to believe they are impervious to the law if they injure someone through their own recklessness while being ‘heroic’”.

“Those responsible for vetting volunteers to work with children will feel they can cut corners in the process, leaving youngsters vulnerable to predatory adults, because the law is said to protect volunteers” he went on.

“Employers will believe they can avoid the law if they injure workers, provided they are‘doing their best’. But what if their best is not good enough?

“Society needs volunteers,” Mr Spencer said. “But someone who wades in and injures another, or leaves a child vulnerable, very quickly becomes a bad neighbour rather than a Good Samaritan.”

-ends-

Notes to editors:

  • APIL (Association of Personal Injury Lawyers) is a not-for-profit organisation whose members are dedicated to campaigning for improvements in the law to help people who are injured or become ill through no fault of their own.
  • For more information contact APIL's press and communications officers Jane Hartwell on t: 0115 943 5416, m: 07808 768623, e: jane.hartwell@apil.org.uk, or Tim Carter t: 0115 943 5409, e: tim.carter@apil.org.uk.
  • Visit the association's website at www.apil.org.uk.
  • •Follow @APIL on Twitter: www.twitter.com/APIL.

Past press releases

Lawyers call for outright ban on cold calling for personal injury in Scotland, 01 Jun 2018
APIL, FOIL and MASS join forces for mediation project, 29 May 2018
Grieving relatives cruelly ignored by justice system, 27 Apr 2018
Car insurance injury claims lowest this decade, 23 Apr 2018
Court closure threat to local justice system , 21 Mar 2018
Government washes its hands of injured people, 20 Mar 2018
Cold calling ban: time for Government to deliver, 08 Mar 2018
MPs told: Now is the time to ban cold calling, 22 Jan 2018

More past press releases

Head of Public Affairs
Lorraine Gwinnutt
0115 943 5400
lorraine.gwinnutt@apil.org.uk

Communications Manager
Jane Hartwell
0115 943 5416
jane.hartwell@apil.org.uk

Press & Communications Officer
Lizzy Freeman
0115 943 5431
lizzy.freeman@apil.org.uk