Gordon Campbell | Parliament TV | Parliament Today | News Video | Crime | Employers | Housing | Immigration | Legal | Local Govt. | Maori | Welfare | Unions | Youth | Search

 


Decision proves urgency of health and safety reforms

July 4, 2013

CTU Media Release

High Court decision proves urgency of health and safety reforms

A High Court decision that those in charge of a business can escape responsibility for workplace safety shows the urgent need for stronger health and safety laws, says the Council of Trade Unions.

The CTU is calling for the full implementation of the Health & Safety Taskforce recommendations, which are currently under consideration by the Government.

CTU president Helen Kelly says the High Court decision will make work in New Zealand more dangerous unless the law is changed.

“New Zealand workers are being put at risk by a system that allows companies to contract out their work and with it their health and safety obligations.

“This decision will only make work more dangerous. We are not going to improve our appalling rate of workplace deaths and injuries so long as employers are allowed to simply outsource responsibility for the health and safety of their staff.”

Helen Kelly says contracting out of health and safety is prevalent in some of our most dangerous industries, including construction.

“Most of the construction work in the country is contracted then sub-contracted by the large construction firms because the incentives are significant. The big construction firms can play contractors off against each other and dispense with any obligations to their staff.

“The law needs to recognise that when a company gets a job and contracts out the work then it must retain responsibility for all workers at the workplace. Without this, sub-contracting simply becomes the easy way out and it’s workers and their families who pay the price.

“The Taskforce recommended a new legal regime based on the Australian Model Law where the ‘person in charge of the business’ has the primary responsibility for health and safety and liability where duties are breached.

“This is an essential change that New Zealand workers deserve and that will make them safer at work. This change has been supported by unions and business and must now be adopted by Government as a matter of urgency.”

ENDS


© Scoop Media

 
 
 
 
 
Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines

 

Breed Laws Don’t Work: Vets On New National Dog Control Plan

It is pleasing therefore to see Louise Upston Associate Minister for Local Government calling for a comprehensive solution... However, relying on breed specific laws to manage dog aggression will not work. More>>

ALSO:

Corrections Corrected: Supreme Court Rules On Release Dates

Corrections has always followed the lawful rulings of the Court in its calculation of sentence release dates. On four previous occasions, the Court of Appeal had upheld Corrections’ practices in calculating pre-sentence detention. More>>

ALSO:

Not Waiting On Select Committee: Green Party Releases Medically-Assisted Dying Policy

“Adults with a terminal illness should have the right to choose a medically assisted death,” Green Party health spokesperson Kevin Hague said. “The Green Party does not support extending assisted dying to people who aren't terminally ill because we can’t be confident that this won't further marginalise the lives of people with disabilities." More>>

ALSO:

General Election Review: Changes To Electoral Act Introduced

More effective systems in polling places and earlier counting of advanced votes are on their way through proposed changes to our electoral laws, Justice Minister Amy Adams says. More>>

Gordon Campbell: On Our Posturing At The UN

In New York, Key basically took an old May 2 Washington Post article written by Barack Obama, recycled it back to the Americans, and still scored headlines here at home… We’ve had a double serving of this kind of comfort food. More>>

ALSO:

Treaty Settlements: Bills Delayed As NZ First Pulls Support

Ngāruahine, Te Atiawa and Taranaki are reeling today as they learnt that the third and final readings of each Iwi’s Historical Treaty Settlement Bills scheduled for this Friday, have been put in jeopardy by the actions of NZ First. More>>

ALSO:

Gordon Campbell: On The Damage De-Regulation Is Doing To Fisheries And Education, Plus Kate Tempest

Our faith in the benign workings of the market – and of the light-handed regulation that goes with it – has had a body count. Back in 1992, the free market friendly Health Safety and Employment Act gutted the labour inspectorate and turned forestry, mining and other workplace sites into death traps, long before the Pike River disaster. More>>

Get More From Scoop

 

LATEST HEADLINES

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Politics
Search Scoop  
 
 
Powered by Vodafone
NZ independent news