ACT government commits to improving workplace health and safety

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The ACT Government commits its support to the recommendations of an independent review of its work safety compliance infrastructure, policies, and procedures, including a structural reform to WorkSafe ACT to ensure its independence.

The government committed to making sure all workers in the ACT return home from work safely at the end of every day and every shift.

“While improvements in recent years have delivered a 20 percent reduction in lost-time injuries since 2010-11, we know that best practice in work health and safety is constantly evolving,” said Employment Minister Rachel Stephen-Smith.

“That’s why we commissioned a comprehensive review of the compliance and enforcement framework in May 2018 – the first since the ACT adopted national model work health and safety laws in 2011.

“The review was undertaken by Nuos Group and involved extensive stakeholder consultation and research into best practice in work health and safety compliance and enforcement.

“The final report, released today, makes 27 recommendations aimed at strengthening the Government’s framework for enforcing work health and safety laws in the ACT.”

The recommendations include the need for the following:

  • A change to the organizational structure to support the independence of the regulator
  • Greater clarity about the roles of the regulator and Work Safety Commissioner
  • More clarity and consistency in the workplace health and safety compliance framework and supporting documents
  • Better and more strategic use of data to inform the activities of the regulator
  • Increasing capability, collaboration and engagement within the regulator

“I would like to acknowledge the commitment of all inspectors, policy officers, regulators, unions, employer representatives and other stakeholders who work each day to support safety in workplaces and work sites across the ACT,” said Minister Stephen-Smith.

“Over the coming months, the government will work to ensure that the changes made will support the safety of workers now and into the future.”

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