|Issue No 85||23 February 2001|
Unions Pause On New Safety Laws
By Mary Yaager
There are big gains for workers with new health and safety laws which are set to replace the myriad of rules and regulations that currently exist in NSW.
Employers must now consult with employees about safety issues and there are legal teeth to punish recalcitrant bosses.
The streamlined Occupational Health and Safety Regulation will replace a number of NSW acts covering Health and Safety, such as the Construction Safety Act, the Factories Shops and Industries Act and other existing Legislation.
However, according to Greg Donnelly , Secretary of the Shop Distributive and Allied Employees Association, unions do have concerns with the new law, particularly because some of the good provisions in the old laws are not being replaced.
Greg Donnelley said his union constantly uses the provisions under the Shops Factories and Industry Act which cover important issues such as ventilation, workspace, amenities, first aid, heat and cold and young people working with machinery".
Labor Council, Assistant Secretary, John Robertson and a number of unions met with the Minister John Della Bosca this week to discuss concerns over the new proposed occupational health and safety laws.
John Robertson said ' the Minister has given assurances that the important provisions such as first aid, amenities etc. will be carried across under the new OHS Regulation 2000'
John went on to say ' the Minister has also set up a number of consultative committees with the unions to work through the details'
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Last Modified: 15 Nov 2005