Monday, June 24, 2024

Queensland accepts WHS Act review recommendations

Queensland Industrial Relations Minister, Grace Grace, has today announced that the Government has accepted all 31 recommendations from an independent review into the state’s Work Health and Safety Act 2011.

Minister Grace said the recommendations will ensure Queensland’s WHS laws remain the strongest in the country, with legislation set to be introduced to Parliament later this year to implement the majority of the recommendations.

“One of the key findings from Work Health and Safety Act review was the need for more education on the rights of worker health and safety representatives (HSRs), so we will clarify and enhance the existing frameworks and support the reduction of unnecessary disputes,” the Minister said.

“Our amendments will deliver on an election commitment to enable HSRs to choose their training provider.”

The Queensland Government’s Australian-first Code of Practice for managing silica dust in construction and manufacturing also commenced today.

Developed in consultation with unions, employers and technical experts, the dust control methods contained in the code are based on extensive data evidence.

Designed to protect Queensland workers from exposure to respirable crystalline silica (RCS or silica dust) – known to cause the deadly disease silicosis – the new code of practice provides minimum enforceable standards to eliminate or minimise exposure to silica dust.

“We have all been shocked and saddened to head the stories of workers suffering from silicosis. Make no mistake, this code will save lives and make our work sites safer for everyone,” said Minister Grace.

The Code applies to all construction work as well as the manufacturing of building materials that contain crystalline silica.  

You can view the WHS Act Review report and the Queensland Government’s response here.  

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