Deputy prime minister John Prescott is to meet major contractors and union leaders to discuss health and safety.

Prescott will meet representatives from contractors and unions on 4 July and will hold a separate meeting with union leaders at a later date.

The meetings come after Building revealed that site deaths are on the increase after a number of years of decline. The meetings also follow last week’s launch of the DETR’s Revitalising Health and Safety initiative, which promised to single out construction for special attention.