The United Kingdom was the first nation to industrialise.
While they were perhaps more to do with a need to contain unrest than morally motivated, they were significant in transferring responsibility for helping the needy from private hands to the state.
They were a political solution for serious social problems caused by rapid expansion of the population between the 14th and 16th Centuries and a burgeoning woollen trade upon which the nation’s wealth had come to depend.
A brief history of the origins, development and implementation of health and safety law in the United Kingdom, 1802–2014 by David Eves This document by David Eves is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License.
Health and safety law in the United Kingdom has been over 200 years in the making.
After the Second World War the Welfare State was founded and Poor Laws were a thing of the past.