Will workers be safer through an expansion of Comcare?

At a recent breakfast seminar, Steve Bell of Herbert Smith Freehills mentioned that a Bill is with the Australian Senate that will open up the Comcare scheme to Australian businesses through the removal of the national competition test.  This move has been flagged for some time with several lawyers expressing reservations.  Bell mentioned this to … Continue reading “Will workers be safer through an expansion of Comcare?”

FOI request for cost of introducing WHS laws fails again

Last year SafetyAtWorkBlog reported its failure at gaining the release of the Victorian Government’s full cost analysis of the introduction of the national Work Health and Safety laws.  In November 2014 the Victorian Government changed from conservative Liberal to traditionally more worker-friendly Labor Party.  So I submitted another request, with the same result, the report …

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CEO survey shows odd attitude to OHS

One has to be very careful with surveys, particularly those involving business confidence or surveys of an organisation’s membership base.  These are often surveys of perception which may not correlate with reality and can be used as an excuse to lobby government or set an agenda rather than determining a societal truth.  A recent example of … Continue reading “CEO survey shows odd attitude to OHS”

Politics before safety in South Australia

Occupational health and safety (OHS) eyebrows were raised in Australia recently as a State Government suspended the application of three construction-related codes of practice, principally, on the basis that compliance will cost too much.  The decision by South Australia’s Minister for Industrial Relations, John Rau, following a report by the Small Business Commissioner, Mike Sinkunas, … Continue reading “Politics before safety in South Australia”

Robust analysis of Work Health Safety laws shows considerable economic benefits

Recently SafeWorkSA released its “Regulatory Impact Statement: Model Work Health and Safety Regulations in South Australia“.  This report presents radical different economic data compared to the (increasingly discredited) OHS business cost analysis undertaken by PricewaterhouseCooper (PwC) for the Victorian government. The South Australian report, conducted by Deloitte, found the following economic and social impacts of new work health … Continue reading “Robust analysis of Work Health Safety laws shows considerable economic benefits”

Latest Productivity Commission data on Australia’s OHS costs

On 15 May 2012, Australia’s Productivity Commission (PC) released its findings into  ” the impacts of the Council of Australian Governments (COAG) Reforms: Business Regulation and Vocational Education and Training (VET)”.  The report includes a chapter on Occupational Health and Safety (OHS). That chapter states: “Uncertainty exists over the implementation of the agreed [OHS harmonisation]reforms by the … Continue reading “Latest Productivity Commission data on Australia’s OHS costs”