I attended a lunchtime session on Friday to discover what exactly has been going i'll carry on with the OSH Harmonisation since i last viewed. Well here in WA (The Wait Awhile state) nothing has were held. "No! how on this planet can that be"? I hear you asking. Work out plans all designed be done and dusted by 01st January. Not to - the saga is continuing.
The update was you can find at a gentleman called Ian Munn. Unfortunately the ac unit was creating a lot of noise - or should that read "fortunately"? - I does not catch just what he was saying. I am going to give a brief run down of what i heard and hopefully is actually no enough information for you to make some sense of it all.
We were told straight up that the reason the model law had been not implemented in WA is mainly because not all of the regulations for mining are available and that WA is full of mines. It hasn't stopped the other states though! I do agree that it awesome if a business in Perth that has to conduct work on the mines has the same legislation to comply while having. It will certainly make it easier when it finally falls into placement.
The next slide talked about timing. NSW, QLD, NT ACT and the Commonwealth implemented the model on 01st January 2012. Tasmania have enacted the model WHS laws with an implementation date of 1st January the year 2013. So I have had to find information on Enacted to make sure I will have this most desirable. It has been passed by Tasmanian parliament but will not start until 2013 so that they can make positive everyone knows what is going on.
Onto out of date WA - they choose implement the WHS laws as a country package consists of the mining sector. No date for implementation is set. See I mentioned so - WA = Wait Awhile! I then heard Ian express that WA are conducting a situation specific consultation process subsequently prepare a report to supplement the national regulation impact statement. So what does after that mean? An advisor (who will charge a whack of money I bet) will prepare a discussion, and also quality . report, then economical analysis submission. This will then supplement the national report and is planned for mid-may. Plan used established another discussion paper. Confused yet? I am!
The structure is as follows:
Model Regulations (These provide support into the model act on specific issues)
Guidance Material (Practical help with how to comply with the law)
Not much has really changed considering out bank account. In the model laws things been recently shifted around. The current OHS regulations are being replaced by WHS likes and dislikes. All the information is still there, just relocated and absolutely has been lost.
A slide was built on the screen that came down to difficult to learn but called "How it truly is look in WA". The task Health and Safety (WA) Act will mirror the Mining Work Health and Safety (WA) Act. The same is said of the WHS (WA) Regulations will mirror the Mining WHS (WA) Ordinances.
Coming out of the WHS Regulations will function as the codes of practice and out on the Mining WHS Regulations belly the Core Mining (WA) Regulations and then below them the Non-core Mining (WA) Regulations.
The next slide asked "Will the model WHS Laws be dissimilar to our current laws"? Could was - at to the next stage - "no". The concepts which may well built around are still the equal to the current OSH Act which is:
Primary Duty of Care
At the level of more detail there always be some differences. Section 19 of the OHS and WHS Act regarding duty of care is similar in praoclaiming that though the "devil is in the detail".
One thing that I picked up here was ready the WHS Regulations containing some additional regulatory expectations. The one that was mentioned was Sound experience. Currently the law says need to remove workers from the noise, engineer out the noise, provide and wear ppe other folks. There will now be a bonus requirement that audiometric testing will also now is required to be done. That is going to cost a reasonable bit of money across Review.
The themes of the new model law are huge on training and consultation. The elements are still the same regarding the requirement of conducting risk assessments. Is not law is very prescriptive because everyone should be trained an consulted to maintain workplace precautions.
There are three main key terms to keep up with - Person conducting business or undertaking - PCBU, Worker and Workplace. The PCBU could be the Organisation (the Board or anyone who makes a decision that affects the business as a whole). The staff member is a portion Manager, Supervisor, Worker, Volunteer. Remember the workplace is anywhere where effort is being carried out - for that reason anyone who works from home will need to do a "working from home assessment" include them as complying with workplace safety matters.
It is important to keep in mind that the PCBU starts back in the start of. So the concept - the one designs an angle grinder can be guilty as a PCBU for providing/selling a device that is dangerous if it's incorrectly designed or man-made. This means that the safety process really should be thought about right out of the "get go".
The term Officer has caused a regarding angst and fear. People have thought that they can be locked up and the key thrown separated! So the definition of a security officer is in section 9 of the (Excludes partnerships) Corporations Act 2001. A police officer of the crown is someone that in power over the Department of Commerce (They would be PCBU) Confused yet???? So a Supervisor in a Factory is not an officer unless they create decisions that affect the whole of the organisation.
The next slide must have been rather dull because i didn't take many notes - the one thing I heard over the noisy hvac was the OHS Act contains words in the negative "Shall Not" which sort of heads towards region of dreaming about the utmost. The new model law reads in a more positive light - "If you are an officer you should do......".
In relation to its the structure of the model WHS couple of different methods four things that WA isn't going to accept. This means that there will be gaps your Model Law from the opposite states. The actual plan is to make without the numbering is must not across Australia - that sounds like the very sensible idea. One important thing that isn't being accepted in WA is Workplace entry by WHS entry permit spots. This is not an issue as this is already covered in the Labor relations act and WA can make it clear that they are not going to repeat this in case it causes confusion. This makes sense opinion. When talking about framework of the model WHS Regulations everything is covered, just shifted around or has been re-structured under the Codes of Practice.
So onto the first stage Codes of Practice. The next COP's track back to your WHS Regulations -
Prevention of falls, Asbestos management, Asbestos removal, Manual tasks, Noise, Confined Spaces, Chemical labeling, Safety Data Sheets, Workplace facilities.
The next two COP's track in order to the Act - The right way to manage work health and safety risks and work health and safety meeting.
This is part of the talk that is important to comprehend. Ian said that for the WA companies to get themselves prepared is not to go out and create systems inside the Codes of Practice yet as these kinds of are still not 100% completed. He said that the starting point for preparing for your new Model Law is to look at improvements around our Risk Management.
The second stage Codes of Practice have been finalized plus they are waiting for ministerial specifications. They are currently being played with other jurisdictions. There are two that are nevertheless out for public brief review. They are Preventing and managing fatigue at work and Preventing and Giving answers to workplace bullying. It has been decided that they have to be re-developed and other codes are being developed around aggression and violence in the office. So there can be a benefit of WA holding back and waiting. When you finally go over the line everything always be finalised. Still not likely to hold my breath on that sole!
The third stage Codes of Practice are potential released for one 3 month public comment period. To start that exactly what the slide says. Ian mentioned that they're going to already be out now (Confusion up top). Ultimately there is actually going to 61 Codes of Clinic.
The Outcome - Had been 13 people around the table. All of us have got a personal desire as each Regulator must deliver workplace safety in their jurisdiction. There has been some disagreement on the way its been postulated but the Regulators have become there.......Its just taken as long that another Government is getting ready to bite break free!
Finally what can you do to prepare?
Start using an undertaking a review of your level of compliance the actual use of current law: Risk assessment/Management. Then review the content belonging to the "How to manager work health and safety risks" code of practice. Additionally you need consider the content of the additional harmonized codes of practice that are relevant for the business. This will bring you a step closer.
There will not be need to fear the model law. It's up and running regions of the country states and full steam ahead.
Going forward - Watch this space for updates.
Remember S.I.N.A = Safety Is No Accident
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