Safe Work Bill, suitably qualified and professional plans

Dr Geoff Dell of Protocol Safety Management and a prominent member of the Safety Institute of Australia (SIA), believes that the most crucial issue facing the safety profession in Australia is the lack of the requirement to use a “suitably qualified” safety adviser. The Australian Government was recommended to include such a requirement in its draft OHS model … Continue reading “Safe Work Bill, suitably qualified and professional plans”

OHS is becoming criminal law in a social context

On 14 October 2009, Australian law firm Deacons hosted a breakfast seminar of the draft OHS model law proposed by the Australian Government.  The speaker, Mike Hammond, expressed concern about many sections of the draft laws because they do not seem to fit how OHS law has been structured in Australia and the UK for over thirty years. This is not to say … Continue reading “OHS is becoming criminal law in a social context”

Perhaps a step too far on homes as workplaces

According to an AAP report released on 8 October 2009, Australian homeowners could be liable for the injuries of workmen on their premises.  According to Michael Tooma of Deacons law firm, the breadth of the proposed OHS model laws could cause big legal problems for homeowners (as if interest rate rises and balcony collapses were not enough). … Continue reading “Perhaps a step too far on homes as workplaces”

OHS law debate and Law Society position

Boardroom Radio has hosted a very interesting podcast between two labour lawyers, Andrew Douglas and Michael Tooma, with the participation of Barry Silburn, the National President of the Safety Institute of Australia. The SIA National President’s contributions were quite narrow, dominated by the issue of “suitably qualified” in the new model OHS laws (but he did struggle … Continue reading “OHS law debate and Law Society position”

Deacons are first with harmonised OHS law comments

Michael Tooma, of the Australian law firm Deacons, is often the first labour lawyer to comment on Australia OHS Law matters and this week was no different.  While many of us are continuing to digest the draft OHS Act, Tooma has identified several issues of interest.  Some are discussed below. [Tooma’s full legal update is available  HERE] … Continue reading “Deacons are first with harmonised OHS law comments”

Lawyers identify contentious OHS law elements

The Safety Conference scheduled for Sydney at the end of October 2009 has finally got an OHS issue that is contentious and is also a work in progress.  The unions are starting to make noise on the OHS laws.  The employer groups are manoeuvring cautiously.  The safety professionals are largely silent (again) but the lawyers … Continue reading “Lawyers identify contentious OHS law elements”

Swine Flu and business continuity – video

On the evening of 2 June 2009, the ABC TV show “Lateline Business” ran a short item on the business continuity issues associated with Australia’s swine flu outbreak.  Not much that was said was new but it proposed an interesting scenario for those people who manage aged care facilities where a potentially virulent illness could harm … Continue reading “Swine Flu and business continuity – video”