OHS:Safety Top Priority in Maitland

WorkCover NSW is strongly encouraging Maitland businesses put safety above all else in 2013.

Thousands of young workers will enter Hunter workplaces for the first time, therefore safety should be ensured to limit any injuries.

WorkCover’s acting Maitland district co-ordinator Greg Saunders said young workers suffered a greater risk of workplace injury than most other workers because of a lack of significant experience

He also cautioned that complacency could be a risk for older workers returning from holidays.

“Starting a new job can be an exciting experience for a young person entering the workforce or a new workplace,” Mr Saunders said.  “Many young workers are also keen to impress and take risks that more experienced workers may not.

“Unfortunately, 12 per cent of all injuries in NSW workplaces occur among the state’s young workers with 2767 workplace injuries and one fatality in the Hunter during 2011/12.”

Mr Saunders said the return to the work period at the end of the school holidays required extra caution on the part of more ­experienced workers.

“Complacency is a major factor in many workplace incidents and workers should be reminded that safety is the top priority when returning from holidays,” he said.

Hunter Valley business MIGAS Apprentices & Trainees provides a comprehensive induction process to ensure all employees understand their workplace safety rights and responsibilities.

“The safety and well-being of our staff and our apprentices and trainees is our first priority,” CEO David Brown said.

“We strongly believe that all injuries are preventable and every person should go home in the shape they came in, if not in a better frame of mind.”

More info on Occupational Health and Safety

Source: http://www.maitlandmercury.com.au/story/1249321/push-to-make-work-safety-a-priority/?cs=171

Proposed New Legislation Will Allow Amputee Worker To Receive Compensation

A legal loophole that left a man unable to access workers’ compensation despite losing his leg in a workplace accident will be amended by proposed new legislation.

Workplace Relations minister David O’Byrne, under pressure from union delegates, yesterday revealed the new laws, which address the issue of  “sham contractors”.

Glenorchy man Anthony Young was denied workers’ compensation after a workplace accident at K&D Brickworks at New Town resulted resulted in the loss of his leg.

Mr Young was working  for two years at  brickworks but was technically contracted with a contracting company.

In July Mr Young was unsuccessful in his appeal for  workers’ compensation after the Court of Appeal in Hobart sided with an earlier decision that he was an independent contractor — not a worker, and therefore not entitled to workers’ compensation.

Mr O’Byrne said  the amendments to the Workers Rehabilitation and Compensation Act 1988  would render workers’ compensation rights to anyone on a sham contract.

“They extend the definition of ‘worker’ to ensure anyone on a sham contract has the same workers’ compensation rights as people on traditional contracts,” the minister said.

The new laws  are currently facing debate and review.

More info on Occupational Health and Safety

Source: http://www.themercury.com.au/article/2012/11/22/366625_tasmania-news.html

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