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NICEIC calls on government to listen over Part P

The NICEIC - UK’s largest registration body for the electrical contracting industry is asking government to listen to its registered contractors over proposed changes to Part P of the Building Regulations. Part P is currently under review by the Department for Communities and Local Government (DCLG), formerly known as the Office for the Deputy Prime Minister (ODPM) which launched the original legislation in 2005.

“NICEIC is lobbying for Part P to be amended sensibly, with focus particularly on maintaining confidence in the legislation, enforcing compliance by non-registered contractors and ensuring consistency in these troubled times,” explains Emma McCarthy, chief executive officer of NICEIC.
“Our great concern is that the electrical contracting industry will be left in 2013, as we believe was the case in 2005, with an imperfect regulation, with little enforcement support from Local Authorities and very little publicity from government.”
NICEIC has surveyed its customers to get their view on Part P and what they would like to see happen to the legislation. 
“There is no doubt registered contractors quite rightly want to see Part P amended for the better, and naturally they have very little regard for DIY electrical work,” Emma continues. “I find it quite remarkable that this review was inspired by comments, many ill-informed from DIYers, on the government’s Your Freedom website. Electrical installation work is potentially dangerous and should be left to the acknowledged experts. The electrical contracting industry’s voice must be heard, otherwise there is a danger the industry will be left with a shell of a regulation and the householder not knowing where to turn for a safe job.
“The argument that Part P of the Building Regulations is “red tape” and a barrier to DIY electrical work in the home has formed the basis for this questionable review. That is fundamentally wrong and there is a danger this premise will compromise safety. Electrical contractors want confidence, consistency and compliance from legislation and that is what we will campaign for.”
The comprehensive survey was sent to NICEIC’s email database of registered contractors with 1500 completed surveys returned. 
• 85% said retain Part P but amend and improve it 
• 73% say public listing of their company for consumers is strongly valued or critically important (ie a business benefit) 
• 49% of NICEIC contractors have seen an improvement in the standard of electrical work since Part P was brought in 
• 95% said no to allowing DIY work without the need to notify 
• 90% said that all installers carrying out electrical work under the Building Regulations should be required to register as Competent Persons 
• 62% agree with Risk Based Assessments  
• 93% want to see more frequent and significant action against non-compliance 
• 73% want schemes to jointly fund consumer publicity  
• 96% want DCLG to recognize the need for increased public awareness
The consultation for Part P will begin in late 2011 and NICEIC intends to share the results of its survey with civil servants, government and other stakeholders. 

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