Communique Safe Work Australia Progresses Model Work Health and Safety Legislati...
Source: Safe Work Australia
The Safe Work Australia Members met today in Canberra following the 5th
Annual Safe Work Australia Awards ceremony held at Parliament House on 28
Members thanked Safe Work Australia staff for organising the highly
successful Awards which focused on individual and organisational
achievement in work health and safety.
Model Work Health and Safety Legislation
Members agreed by majority to endorse the current version of the amended
Model Work Health and Safety (WHS) Act and to recommend it to the Workplace
Relations Ministers' Council (WRMC) to note.
Members were provided with the revised model WHS Act which contained small
technical and drafting amendments.
WRMC has agreed that Safe Work Australia and Parliamentary Counsel's
Committee may continue to make further amendments until the implementation
of the legislation on 1 January 2012.
These amendments will address any issues that may arise as jurisdictions
go through the process of enacting the legislation. Members noted there is
no capacity for Safe Work Australia to endorse any amendments that involve
policy changes without further endorsement by WRMC.
National Code of Practice for the Prevention of Falls in Housing
Members agreed by majority to declare the National Code of Practice for
the Prevention of Falls in Housing Construction (Housing Falls Code).
The Housing Falls Code will be available on the Safe Work Australia
website and will be accompanied by an explanatory statement on its adoption
in each jurisdiction.
The Housing Falls Code provides practical guidance on how to comply with
the National Standard for Construction Work as it relates to the prevention
of fatalities and injuries to persons working at height in the residential
The Housing Falls Code was developed by the Australian Safety and
Compensation Council before work commenced on the model work health and
safety legislation. It will provide guidance to those working in the
residential sector of the construction industry until the work health and
safety legislative framework is implemented.
Members noted that the Housing Falls Code will be used as the basis for
the model Code of Practice as part of the model work health and safety
Safe Work Australia Strategic and Operational Plans
The Safe Work Australia Act 2008 requires Safe Work Australia to prepare a
strategic plan at least every three years and an operational plan before
each financial year. These plans are to be submitted to WRMC for
Draft strategic and operational plans were provided to Members for
consideration at the meeting. The contents of these plans were informed by
the strategic planning workshop held on 18 February where key themes,
priorities and challenges for Safe Work Australia were discussed.
Following further consultation, Members will consider the plans out of
session. The final plans require the endorsement of WRMC.
Strategic Issues and Advisory Group Reports
Members noted the progress of the Strategic Issues Group on Occupational
Health and Safety, Strategic Issues Group on Workers' Compensation,
Communications Advisory Group and Research, Evaluation and Data Advisory
The Safe Work Australia Chair, Mr Tom Phillips AM, thanked these groups
for their continued hard work on the model work health and safety
legislation and workers' compensation matters.
The next meeting of Safe Work Australia will be held on 30 September 2010.