Review of ACT Government’s work health and safety compliance and enforcement arrangements

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The Minister for Workplace Safety and Industrial Relations, Rachel Stephen-Smith and Minister for Regulatory Services, Gordon Ramsay has today announced a review of the ACT’s compliance infrastructure, policies, and procedures.

The review will examine the appropriateness and effectiveness of the government’s current work health and safety compliance and enforcement strategies to ensure they are delivering for Canberra’s workers.

“The safety of workers and ensuring they get home safely each day is an ongoing priority for the ACT Government. We are committed to continual improvement to ensure the highest possible standards,” said Minister Ramsay.

“Stakeholder input will be critical to understanding the experiences of all players in the current system. We encourage workers, businesses, unions and employer representatives to engage in the review process.”

The review will consider the approach to safety compliance and enforcement detailed in WorkSafe ACT’s Compliance Framework; the appropriateness and effectiveness of WorkSafe ACT’s governance structure, including the roles, legislative responsibilities and functions of the Work Safety Commissioner, the Regulator and relevant Ministers; the appropriateness and effectiveness of WorkSafe ACT’s organizational structure, including consideration of its independence and operational effectiveness in its current status as a business unit within Access Canberra; and the ACT’s collection, use and analysis of data and the impact and effectiveness of information sharing within Access Canberra and across government to drive work safety compliance and enforcement activities.

Dr. Claire Noone of Nous Group will lead the review. A report will be submitted to Ministers in September 2018.

“We know there is more to do to ensure that all workers in the ACT are in safe and healthy workplaces and that the government has an important role to play alongside employers, workers, and unions,” said Minister Stephen-Smith.

“This will be the first broad review of the ACT’s work health and safety compliance and enforcement arrangements since the adoption of national model work health and safety legislation in 2011.

“It will take account of existing sector-specific work and other analysis, including the 2012 Getting Home Safely review of the construction industry safety, RMIT University’s 2017 stocktake of the industry’s health and safety culture, and subsequent work by the Work Safety Council to develop a construction industry safety strategy.”

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