26 September 2023

SafeWork review finds SA work safe

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A public review into the practices and processes of SafeWork SA has reported the organisation to be conducting its obligations and responsibilities successfully.

According to the independent review, SafeWork SA has undergone significant reforms over the past five years; that its processes are professional and disciplined; and that injured workers and their families can be confident that future workplace tragedies will be investigated appropriately.

The review recommended however that SafeWork SA work more closely with key organisations such as employer associations, trade unions and health and safety representatives and that it change internal practices and procedures to make it easier for inspectors to spend time conducting inspections rather than administrative work.

In its report, the review endorses the recommendations of a review last year into the death of outback nurse Gayle Woodford, including reforms to secrecy provisions which limit the information provided to injured workers and their families.

Attorney-General, Kyam Maher, said every worker had the right to come home safely to their families and loved ones at the end of each day.

“This review, together with changes such as industrial manslaughter laws, reflects this Government’s commitment to improving work health and safety for the entire South Australian community,” Mr Maher said.

“I am pleased the review has found that SafeWork SA’s investigative processes have undergone significant reform and that injured workers and their families can be confident that future workplace tragedies will be properly investigated,” he said.

“An extensive recruitment process will commence shortly to locate a new Executive Director of SafeWork SA, and I look forward to working with them as we embark on this new chapter for the organisation,” Mr Maher said.

The 113-page review of SafeWork SA and the Government’s 15-page response can be accessed at this PS News link.

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