NSW Premier Announces New Bullying & Harassment Protections
The NSW Premier Ms Berejiklian has announced in a media release on the 28th April that; “she welcomed the findings of the Goward Review into Policies and Procedures in Ministerial Offices regarding bullying, harassment and sexual misconduct and will be accepting the recommendations made.”
“It’s very important to me that we stress test everything that exists in and around NSW Ministerial Offices to make sure that we have in place good policies and culture.” “I want to have a clear conscience that I've done everything I can to make sure that our workplace is supportive, respectful, and fair and that staff are always comfortable in coming forward in a safe setting.” See media release HERE and the Goward Report HERE
High Court determination settles right of entry permit requirement
As reported on the website of the Australian Building and Construction Commission; “The requirement for union officials to hold a valid federal right of entry permit when entering work sites under State or Territory OHS laws has been upheld following a High Court determination. The High Court on 8 April 2021 refused to allow the CFMMEU special leave to appeal a 2020 Full Federal Court decision (13 April 2021).”
For further details see the ABCC website HERE.
Safe Work Australia: Updated Workplace Traffic Management – Guide
Safe Work Australia updated this guidance material on the 19th April 2021. See https://www.safeworkaustralia.gov.au/media-centre/news/updated-workplace-traffic-management-guidance-now-available As the Guide says on page 4; “This Guide has been developed to assist duty holders, primarily persons conducting a business or undertaking (PCBUs), meet their duties and obligations under work health and safety (WHS) laws. You should use this Guide if work carried out as part of your business or undertaking involves a risk of traffic colliding with people, plant, objects, vehicles or structures. Such risks may arise because vehicles operate at your premises, or because work is being carried out on or near a public road, including work repairing a road or on a footpath adjacent to a road. If work is planned to take place on or near a public road you should also contact the relevant road authority about their traffic management requirements and guidelines. You may wish to refer to Austroads’ Guide to temporary traffic management.”
Sexual Harassment in the Workplace
The problem of sexual harassment in the workplace has a good way to go yet but there are positive signs of change for the better and respect is a key factor in the move to a better place.
Recommendations from the national inquiry such as; stronger penalties, new dismissal laws, amendment of the Sex Discrimination Act and Fair Work Act are likely to happen in the future. Prime Minister Scott Morrison has expressed strong words on the need for change. Marise Payne, the Minister for Women points out that respect has to be a national commitment and governments, workplaces, communities and individuals owning the problem of sexual harassment and its solutions.
The Minerals Council of Australia chief executive Tania Constable recently spoke of the importance of eliminating sexual harassment in Australian mining workplaces and that;
“The Safe, Healthy and Respectful Workplaces policy is focussed on building and sustaining respectful workplaces, and combined with the industry’s commitment to eliminating sexual harassment will ensure Australian mining companies can work together to end unacceptable and illegal behaviour.” See HERE for more.