27 September 2023

Work health and safety law to be reviewed

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Members of an independent review into the vitally important Work Health and Safety Act 2011 have been announced.

Former Deputy Director General of the Office of Industrial Relations, Craig Allen is to lead the review which will also comprise Charles Massy, a barrister specialising in Industrial Relations and Employment and former Deputy President of the Queensland Industrial Relations Commission, Deirdre Swan.

Minister for Industrial Relations, Grace Grace said the review would consider the overall effectiveness of the key components of the WHS Act in achieving its objectives.

“It will consider and report on any need for amendments to ensure provisions relating to health and safety representatives are effective and operating as intended,” Ms Grace said.

“It will also look at whether workers are appropriately represented and assisted in the workplace for the purpose of health and safety matters, and if the legislative framework for review and stay provisions with enforcement notices under the WHS Act is effective.”

She said there was also a need to consider whether provisions relating to the issue and dispute resolution were effective and operating as intended.

The review will consider written submissions covering the points outlined and it has been requested that submissions include a detailed explanation of any issues raised.

This includes providing supporting evidence and information to demonstrate the scale of the issue and/or the impact the issue may be having on the effective performance of the WHS Act.

Evidence may include case studies, supporting data, relevant research and information, or any other material relevant to informing the reviewers of the matter.

Consultation closes on 23 September and the findings and recommendations from the review are expected to be presented to the Government in late 2022 or shortly thereafter.

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