‘Industrial Manslaughter’ legislation passed in QLD

‘Industrial Manslaughter’ legislation passed in QLD

As widely expected, Queensland Parliament passed the Work Health and Safety and Other Legislation Amendment Act 2017 on October 12.

Industrial manslaughter will now become an offence attracting up to 20 years jail time and $10 million fines for companies.

Industrial Relations Minister Grace Grace said the new laws would leave negligent employers culpable in workplace deaths with nowhere to hide.

“These new laws will hold all employers – regardless of their size or structure – accountable for negligence contributing to a worker’s death” she said.

Main features of the new laws;

There are lengthy amendments, but here is a snapshot of the points that are most likely to have an impact on your operation.

Provisions now in force:

  • Introduction of a new offence of Industrial Manslaughter – Extended to the broader category of “senior officers”, which can arguably be applied to a wider category of individuals in management roles.
  • Requirement to provide the regulator with a list of Health and Safety Representatives
  • Codes Of Practice (COP) will expire five years after they are approved to allow for more timely review of code

Provisions to commence on 1 July 2018:

  • The safety measures in a Code Of Practice (COP) must be followed unless equal to or better measures can be demonstrated
  • Introducing the ability for a company to appoint a Work Health and Safety Officer
  • Mandating training for Health and Safety Representatives

IMPORTANT NOTE: The appointment of a WHSO or the election of a HSR remains non-mandatory. However, appointment of these roles will now be permissible as evidence that an organisation has taken action to mitigate health and safety risks.

Overall recommendations:  

Immediate Actions:

  • Identify your senior officers and take action to ensure they understand their obligations
  • Review your safety management systems, especially where fatality is possible
  • Review your training to ensure it remains current and effective

Before 1 July 2018:

  • Analyse your operation and determine the applicable Codes of Practice.
  • Review your Policies and Procedures to ensure compliance with relevant Codes of Practice (equal or better)
  • Consider if the appointment of an WHSO or HSR is appropriate to your organisation
safety laws

We strongly recommend that you review your induction training. TANDI’s cloud-based technology help streamline your inductions, fulfil your legal obligations and keep records . . . effortless! 

This is great news for small and medium businesses who often do not have the resources of larger corporations.

All training has been developed in conjunction with industry representatives and a number of experts in their respective field in an effort to offer maximum liability protection for employers.

Want to find out more?  Contact us now