White Card training is a mandatory requirement for anyone involved in the construction industry. It is a hazardous and high-risk industry where everyday new risks are presented as the project moves from inception to completion.
It’s also an industry built on subcontracting. Subbies undertake work on a number of projects managed by a number of companies and developers. Subbies come from a variety of trades including carpentry, electrical, plumbing, cementing, forklift and crane operating to name a few.
Therefore it is imperative for anyone who works in the construction sector to ensure they have the correct training, which is a requirement under Australian OHS law.
But white card training needs to be done in person with a registered training organisation and not online. Many training companies offer online courses but there are a numbers of reasons why you might find yourself off site after completion of an online course rather than onsite.
- Online white card training is not recognised by the workplace health and safety regulatory bodies. Authorities like ASQA are not supportive of white card training that’s been done online.
- Online white card training in NSW is banned.
- Worksafe inspectors recognise colleges and training groups where the training has been done online.
- A trainer must verify your photo ID on the day of training, which can’t be done online. This is a requirement by SafeWork Australia.
- While full support might be promised for online training nothing comes close to one on one training with an industry expert who can answer any question and give real-life in real-time scenarios of what can go wrong once your onsite and ready to start work.
- Training can be done onsite as well.
- No two sites are the same in construction. What might be safe on one site will not be safe on another especially in the civil construction sector.
- Face to face training provides up to date occupational health and safety information that covers civil and commercial construction alongside residential construction and explains the differences between the two.
- Face to face training course have been developed by specialist teachers in conjunction with employers, industry representatives and unions to ensure that all aspects of health and safety are covered by the course. In other words, you know what is being taught is industry standard for working on sites across Australia.
- A face-to-face trainer can provide language, literacy and numeracy (LL&N) support for anyone that needs it. This provides competency and support while training is being undertaken.
- Online training does not give you the skills to be inclusive while learning, which includes listening to others, treating others with respect and understanding racist, sexist, homophobic and other discriminatory attitudes.
Here’s what each state and territory says about training:
General Construction Induction Training is a nationally accredited competency unit known as “Work safely in the construction industry.”
The competency unit is a formal face-to-face training program that provides workers in the construction industry with an awareness and understanding of:
- Their rights and responsibilities under Work Health and Safety law;
- Common hazards and risks in the construction industry;
- Basic risk management principles; and
- The standard of behaviour expected of workers on construction sites.
Construction workers in the Northern Territory are required to undertake general construction induction training (GCIT) delivered by an approved registered training organisation (RTO). Workers, who complete GCIT in the Northern Territory, will be issued a ‘NT white card’ as proof of their training.
You must first complete general construction induction training with a Registered Training Organisation (RTO). You will need to provide the trainer with 100 points of ID and the course fee is set independently by the RTO.
Workplace Health and Safety QLD
The General Construction Induction card provides new and existing workers with the basic understanding and knowledge needed to start or continue work within the building and construction industry. In QLD this card was formerly known as a blue card.
Before anyone can work on an Australian construction site, they must have attained White Card accreditation.
Issued by Registered Training Organisations (RTOs), White Card holders have successfully completed a general induction-training course that provides basic knowledge of construction work, work health and safety (WHS) laws, common site hazards and how to control the associated risks.
WHS Inspectors from SafeWork SA may ask construction workers to provide their White Card for inspection, and ask the PCBU to show their induction training or other worker competency records.
Workplace Standards Tasmania
You can only get a construction induction card by:
- completing construction induction training, AND
- lodging an application at Service Tasmania (see ‘Applying for your card’ below)
A Person Conducting a Business or Undertaking (PCBU) must ensure general construction induction training is provided to any worker engaged by the person carrying out the construction work.
Only the general induction training (classroom based) component is recognised for white, blue, red and construction induction cards.
To obtain a construction induction card, you must attend a construction induction-training course with a registered training organisation (RTO). You must provide the RTO with photo ID.
Training must be completed with a registered with RTO.
Alertforce is a recognised RTO and offers white card training in Sydney, Brisbane, Melbourne and Perth. Check our website for other states and territories.