An expert panel has been established to review and recommend changes to Victoria’s work health and safety (WHS) laws.
The Victorian Government has appointed Dr Claire Noone, Cathy Butcher and Margaret Donnan, among others, to the panel. Noone, Butcher and Donnan have significant policy, regulatory, advocacy and industry experience between them.
The panel will examine WHS compliance, enforcement and promotion. Stakeholder consultation will be undertaken as part of the process.
A report on the panel’s findings is due to the Victorian Minister for Finance, Robin Scott, by the end of the year.
Meanwhile, WorkSafe Victoria has launched a new public awareness campaign about WHS aimed at employers.
“While the majority of employers understand why it is important to maintain a safe workplace, there are still far too many fatalities and injuries occurring every year,” said WorkSafe Chief Executive Clare Amies in a media statement.
“Our campaign shows an employer dealing with the consequences—telling the family, supporting traumatised employees and dealing with a WorkSafe investigation.
“The campaign reminds employers that inspectors visit workplaces anywhere, any day, any time, and the message is a blunt one: If your workers aren’t safe, then neither are you.”
Amies added: “Last year, 20 Victorians lost their lives at work and more than 26,000 workers were hurt seriously enough to receive compensation. Already this year there have been four workplace deaths.”