What can OHS professionals learn from government program failures?

Marcus Priest of the Australia Financial Review wrote a good article on 2 June 2010 (only available through subscription or hard copy) that illustrates the managerial deficiencies of the Australian Government by looking at the lessons from two governmental investigation reports concerning a large-scale construction program for existing schools and the home insulation scheme.  Priest identifies several issues that … Continue reading “What can OHS professionals learn from government program failures?”

The politics of the insulation debacle become clearer

The debacle of the Australian Government’s insulation job creation scheme faded when the scheme was cancelled suddenly by the Government earlier in 2010.  Attention was always going to return at various stages as investigations into the deaths of young insulation installers begin but Parliament resumed earlier and the Opposition attacked.  The attack has led to … Continue reading “The politics of the insulation debacle become clearer”

First prosecution announced over insulation-related deaths

Queensland’s Department of Justice and Attorney-General has announced that an insulation installation company will be charged with offences under its safety legislation due to the death of an employee.  This is the first safety prosecution related to the Government’s , failed,  job creation scheme. According to a media statement issued late on 5 May 2010, “QHI Installations Pty Ltd … Continue reading “First prosecution announced over insulation-related deaths”

Another go at homeowners being exposed to workplace prosecutions

In October 2009, Australian lawyer, Michael Tooma gained considerable media coverage by stating that under the model Work Health and Safety Act: “..if I call out a tradesperson to do some work at my home, my home is their workplace and I would be a person at their workplace.  As such, I would have a duty to … Continue reading “Another go at homeowners being exposed to workplace prosecutions”

Reviewing Today Tonight’s insulation exclusive

As an example of “tabloid TV” the Today Tonight (TT) report broadcast on 17 February 2010 concerning children assisting workers to install insulation, was very good.  It probably benefited from my own appearances remaining brief. The topicality of a story on the home insulation industry could not have been higher yesterday as a Senate inquiry … Continue reading “Reviewing Today Tonight’s insulation exclusive”

Television exposé of children at risk on roof insulation worksite

On 16 February 2010, I was interviewed by Channel 7 television in Melbourne over 20 minutes of footage they had received that showed unacceptable work practices at a domestic site in Cranbourne. Emails from friends told me that my words and face were used in promotional ads by the TV program. At the time of writing this, … Continue reading “Television exposé of children at risk on roof insulation worksite”

Missed OHS issues in insulation debate

The future of Australia’s Environment Minister, Peter Garrett, is uncertain as he struggles for credibility in the wake of furious political attacks. In the various media discussions there are hints of other issues, some related to OHS in Australia, that demand attention. Australian Standards and safety planning Chris Bowen, Minister for Financial Services defended Garrett’s handling of the … Continue reading “Missed OHS issues in insulation debate”