ACT Work Safety Council - Communique

Meeting number 26

30 November 2016

The Work Safety Council is established under the Work Health and Safety Act 2011 to advise the Minister on matters relating to work safety, workers’ compensation and workplace privacy. The Council meets quarterly and consists of representatives from government, industry and unions.

Summary of discussions

The Council supports an upcoming survey of the safety culture in the Territory’s construction industry. The results of the survey will inform the development of new and improved safety initiatives in the Territory.

Members discussed and supported in principle the Work Safety Council’s Strategic Business Plan. The plan aligns Council priorities and activities with the National Work Health and Safety Strategy 2012-2022.

The Council expressed growing concern about occupational violence in the Territory and undertook to convene a sub-committee to focus on this topic.

The Construction Safety Advisory Committee has been giving consideration to a specific Working with Asbestos Course for use in the ACT. The Council considered the Committee’s proposal and has sought additional information from the Advisory Committee on how such a course could best meet the WHS needs of employees working with Asbestos Containing Materials.

The Council noted recent injuries and incidents involving young or apprentice workers in the ACT. Work Health and Safety Education and Training will remain a Council standing agenda item to enable members to monitor developments and provide advice to the Minister on this topic.

Members discussed timing for the commencement of the Globally Harmonised System of Classification and Labelling of Chemicals (GHS) in the Territory and agreed that 1 January would be a suitable start date.  Planning to support this is underway.

The Council discussed labour hire arrangements in the ACT and considered the outcomes of inquiries recently undertaken by South Australia, Victoria and Queensland. Members requested further information on developments in this area to enable the Council to provide advice to the Minister on labour-hire arrangements in the ACT.

The Work Safety Commissioner provided the Council with an update on the recent activities and upcoming compliance programs for WorkSafe ACT.  

Next Meeting scheduled for Wednesday 24 May 2017.


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