sign up Your signup was successful Subscribing..


< back

Pike River: Further Consequences

By Andrew Steele - 28 Feb 2013

We have previously discussed the increasing emphasis on health and safety in the workplace.  This emphasis is confirmed by the establishment of a new workplace health and safety agency which was recently announced.  This was one of the key recommendations that arose out of the Royal Commission on the Pike River Coal Mine tragedy.

The new agency is to have a dedicated focus on health and safety.  It will be committed to ensuring people are well protected from injury and death when they go to work each day.  The Minister has stated a firm target of a 25% reduction in fatality and serious injury rates by 2020.  The new agency appears to be one of the key instruments to achieve this.

It is noted that the agency will have the same status as other health and safety regulators, being the Civil Aviation Authority and Maritime New Zealand, who are Crown agents.  Crown agents are at arm's length from the Minister and are the only form of Crown entity which can be directed by Ministers to give effect to Government policy.

At the moment there is currently a wide ranging review of workplace health and safety systems.  An independent task force is due to report with its recommendations by 30 April.  It is expected that those recommendations will also result in further reform, including changes to health and safety legislation.

Consequently, health and safety changes have only just begun and will continue rolling through.  A renewed focus on health and safety, as a result of the Pike River tragedy, is good, if not somewhat belated, news for all workers.


Forward to a friend

Leave a comment