20 February 2013
CTU Welcomes new Health and Safety Agency
The Council of Trade Unions has welcomed the announcement today by the Minister of Labour, Simon Bridges, of a new Health and Safety Crown Agency.
Helen Kelly, CTU President, says “the union movement is committed to working with the Government to improve the health and safety of our workforce”.
“Unions stand for decent jobs that are secure and safe”.
The CTU had supported an independent agency in its submissions to the Royal Commission on the Pike River Coal Mine Tragedy.
Helen Kelly said that during the time it takes to set up this new agency, we need to see more work done to improve the safety of workers. This agency is only part of the answer to our terrible record on death and injuries in the workforce.
New Zealand has an accident rate at work that is twice that of Australia and seven times worse than the United Kingdom. This must change and we look forward to the recommendations of the Independent Taskforce on Workplace Health and Safety which are due at the end of April.
“All workers in New Zealand, and their families and communities are counting on that report to make a difference so we can address this huge problem”.