Being a member of a local safety group provides nuggets of occupational health and safety (OHS) information from speakers and members in a broad range of industries and occupations. The May 2017 meeting of the Central Safety Group at which Wayne Richards spoke provoked several OHS thoughts about safety, leadership and culture. One was that Transdev…
The latest broadcast in Safe Work Australia’s Virtual Safety Seminar (VSS) series is aimed at the executive level of management and entitled “Why big business needs to lead work health and safety“. One of the attractions of the VSS is that Safe Work Australia is able to draw upon senior and prominent business leaders who do not often talk occupational health and safety.
Several important perspectives were discussed that would be helpful to the intended audience but there were also some comments that deserve contemplation.
In mid-April 2017, Safe Work Australia (SWA) filmed its latest webinar at an inner-city hotel in Sydney on the theme of “Why big business needs to lead work health and safety”. SWA has established a strong place in the online safety media by providing unique information in a professional presentation.
I flew up to Sydney for the event as I had heard that SWA was looking for audience members. There were a few familiar faces in the SWA team and they were excited about the filming. But it is very hard to determine just how successful this type of webinar is. Performance statistics should be available but they are rarely shared.
It is common for people to play cliché bingo, where one notes down all of the cliché’s a person, usually a boss, is using and when all of the clichés have been used, BINGO! You’re job may end at that point so a silent BINGO may be best.
This exercise can be fun, particularly at conferences, but clichés can be hazardous as they can reinforce poor understandings and compound the simplification of complicated ideas or ideas that should be complex and addressed. Occupational health and safety (OHS) has some major clichés that need to be called out and examined.
Discussion about gender in the workplace peaks each year around International Women’s Day on March 8. Occasionally there is renewed localised interest when an issue pops up but the issue of gender permeates our thoughts, our planning and our conduct all the time.
Recently, SafetyAtWorkBlog had the chance to ask some questions about gender and diversity and the relevance to the workplace and the occupational health and safety (OHS) profession to Alena Titterton (pictured above), a fascinating workplace relations lawyer with the Australian offices of Clyde & Co.
Gender diversity seems to be more prominent than diversity generally. Should gender diversity be given priority over, or be separated from, other categories such as ethnicity or sexuality?
Steve Bell is a partner with Hebert Smith Freehills (HSF) in Melbourne, Australia. As many law firms do, HSF conducts several events each year to inform clients and others of occupational health and safety (OHS) and labour relations issues. In March 2017 Bell, who is the regular host at these events, spoke at a breakfast seminar held jointly with the Safety Institute of Australia, and identified several safety issues as becoming prominent in 2017:
- Increased penalties
- The risk of complacency
- Increased interplay between OHS and industrial relations
- Focus on public safety elements of OHS
- the review of regulations.
Below are some thoughts on the issues raised by Steve Bell.
Part of good corporate governance is transparency. A core element of occupational health and safety (OHS) is effective consultation. These two business practices seem compatible in that they address what is good for business and what is good for the workers. But there is a snake in this garden of safety – Legal Professional Privilege (LPP).
Kirstin Ferguson has been an amazing advocate for occupational health and safety (OHS), good governance, Board responsibility, and gender diversity. She is receiving a great deal of media attention lately for her Celebrating Women campaign on social media. Ferguson has inspired, and been inspired by, many people in the OHS profession in Australia and is an example of how OHS blends with issues of leadership and governance in a way that is very different from the Trojan Horse analogy recently discussed by John Green.
On March 8 2017 Australia’s
Melania Trump plagiarised a Michelle Obama speech. Following the signing of an Executive Order to reform regulations, perhaps President Trump could echo these words from a similarly-themed Executive Order of President Bill Clinton in 1993:
“The American people deserve a regulatory system that works for them, not against them: a regulatory system that protects and improves their health, safety, environment, and well-being and improves the performance of the economy without imposing unacceptable or unreasonable costs on society: – regulatory policies that recognize that the private sector and private markets are the best engine for economic growth: regulatory approaches that respect the role of State, local, and tribal governments; and regulations that are effective, consistent, sensible, and understandable. We do not have such a regulatory system today”
President Trump has set the United States bureaucracy a task that has already been undertaken by the
Following the resignation of Andrew Puzder, President Trump has nominated Alexander Acosta to be the new Labor Secretary. The United States media, generally, has been supportive of the nomination particularly in comparison to Puzder. However, there was a particular line in the President’s media conference that may indicate his approach to safety legislation and regulations.
“We’ve directed the elimination of regulations that undermine manufacturing and call for expedited approval of the permits needed for America and American infrastructure and that means plant, equipment, roads, bridges, factories.” (emphasis added)
President Trump’s plans for cutting regulatory red tape was forecast during his election campaign when he stated that regulations:
“… just stopping businesses from growing.”
President Trump or his Labor Secretary nominees have not mentioned occupational health and safety (OHS) specifically but the