Statements on Australia’s OHS review report

According to today’s The Australian, Australian trade unions has “panned” the first report by the National OHS Law Review.  Here is what the ACTU Assistant Secretary Geoff Fary said,   “We are pleased that the Panel Report has recognised that breaches of OH&S laws are criminal rather than civil matters. These recommendations are a step … Continue reading “Statements on Australia’s OHS review report”

National OHS Law Review – First Report released

The first report of the National OHS Law Review panel was presented to the Australian Government yesterday. The best initial assessment of the report can be found at a safety blog operated by Deacons law firm.  In that report by Michael Tooma and Alena Titterton, the following points are made: there should be a general … Continue reading “National OHS Law Review – First Report released”

OHS uniformity is looking unlikely

Michael Tooma, a lawyer with Australian law firm Deacons, has stated “Despite the enthusiastic manner in which the harmonisation agenda has been pursued, and the appearance of progress in that regard, it is likely that the quest for uniformity in OHS laws across Australia will remain elusive.” His reasons for this statement in a recent edition … Continue reading “OHS uniformity is looking unlikely”

Coronial report into insulation deaths slams government actions

This week a Queensland Coroner brought down the findings into the deaths of three men, Matthew Fuller (25), Rueben Barnes (16) and Mitchell Sweeney (22). Each of these men were electrocuted whilst installing foil insulation in the roofs of Queensland houses as part of a Federally funded economic stimulus project during 2009 and 2012. Since … Continue reading “Coronial report into insulation deaths slams government actions”

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”

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”

The insidiousness of “reasonably practicable”

WorkSafe Victoria recently released a guideline, or clarification, on what it considers to be the issues surrounding “employing or engaging suitably qualified persons to provide health and safety advice“. SafetyAtWorkBlog remains to be convinced that such a process will lead to better safety outcomes in the small to medium-sized enterprises at which this program is … Continue reading “The insidiousness of “reasonably practicable””