Australia to ratify ILO OHS Convention, says Senator

The Australian Financial Review (AFR) reported on 14 June 2011 (not freely available online) that Senator Jacinta Collins has publicly stated that an International Labour Organisation (ILO) occupational health and safety convention will be signed by the current Government in conjunction with other conventions on maritime labour, asbestos and part-time work.  The announcement that “Australia will ratify four ILO Conventions this year” was made at the recent International Labour Conference.

Most of the AFR article focussed on the labour relations impacts of the conventions but RMIT’s Professor of Law, Breen Creighton noted that

“Ratifying a convention has no effect in Australian law unless the Australian parliaments legislate to give effect to the international obligations.”

Senator Collins’ speech identifies the OHS protocol as the “Optional Protocol of 2002 to the Occupational Health and Safety Convention”.

A brief discussion on this protocol occurred on this blog in late April 2011 when the ratification was mentioned during the World Day for Safety and Health at Work.

Kevin Jones

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