The Shock of the New

The Australian Human Resources Institute (AHRI) has recently published an article about the significant Human Resources trends for 2019. The trends identified include

  •  “A Change of Government”
  •  “Gig Economy Classification”
  •  “Sexual Harassment”
  •  “Technology Trends”

SafetyAtWorkBlog will be more specific in its occupational health and safety (OHS) “trends” for 2019.

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“Put them in jail!” – Industrial Manslaughter laws are not that simple

Christy Cain at ALP National Conference

Several people were surprised when Industrial Manslaughter laws popped up on the agenda on Day 3 of the National Conference of the Australian Labor Party (ALP) this week.  To ALP members from Western Australia and the Construction Forestry Mining Maritime and Energy Union, Christy Cain and Thomas French put a resolution on the issue to the Conference, which the delegates endorsed.

Most of the media who mentioned this resolution, and it was not many, focused on Cain’s urging of the delegates to

“Kill a worker, go to jail”.

Even though getting the audience to chant was colourful,  and the minute’s silence important, the discussion around Industrial Manslaughter laws was more nuanced.

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What is the “All Victorians Infrastructure Fund”?

ON 22 November 2018, two days before the State Election the Secretary of the Department of Treasury and Finance released a document called the “Release of costing of election commitment“.  Most of the media attention was on the removal of a self-imposed “debt cap” by Treasurer, Tim Pallas, but there is an interesting footnote that seems to involve using some of WorkSafe Victoria’s premium income as a dividend to fund infrastructure.

Attachment A – “Summary of Labor’s 2018 Election Commitments” – lists the following table (figures are in millions):

Footnote 3 says:

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Greens OHS Update

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Further to this morning’s article, the Victorian Greens provided the following information:

“The Greens believe that:

  • Every employee deserves to be safe in the workplace
  • Going to work should not involve putting lives at risk
  • Harsh penalties should be in place to deter employers from cutting corners on workplace safety
  • The law must provide justice for victims and families should preventable accidents occur in the workplace

Earlier this year, Nina Springle MP called on the Victorian Government to introduce corporate and industrial manslaughter laws. You can read more about it in the link below:

https://greens.org.au/vic/news/media-release/keeping-victorians-safe-work

In other states around Australia, the Greens have continually been strong advocates for industrial manslaughter laws.”

Kevin Jones