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Next steps for Health and Safety shake up could go further

Media statement Wednesday, 7th August 2013

Next steps for Health and Safety shake up could go further

While welcome, some areas of the new health and safety law guidelines for Worksafe New Zealand could go further, says Paul Jarvie, Manager of Health and Safety for the Employers and Manufacturers Association.

"The Working Safer package is good overall though there's a lot more detail we need to work through yet," Mr Jarvie said.

"We can already see some room to improve on it.

"For example, the accident prevention resources currently in ACC should become part of Worksafe New Zealand and not just obliged to collaborate with it as stated at present.

"Another issue is employee participation in workplace health and safety programmes is already well entrenched, which is as it should be and good, but that emphasis needs to be balanced with more training made available for managers at all levels.

"We also want to see the health and safety regulators extended to take on a modern role by assisting employers carry out their workplace obligations, and not just be there to dish out higher penalties.

"On the issue of whether company directors should become liable to corporate manslaughter in the event of a serious accident, the evidence from overseas suggests its difficult to introduce and implement such a provision, and we think there are other ways to achieve the type of severe penalties warranted in cases of this type."


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