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Consulting with workers and worker representatives

A business must consult with workers who carry out work for the business or undertaking and who are, or are likely to be, directly affected by a health and safety matter. The business must take into account the views of workers consulted and advise those workers of the outcome of the consultation. If the workers are represented by a health and safety representative, the consultation must involve that representative. 

While it is the duty of the business to consult on WHS matters, it is the duty of it's officers (Director, CEO, etc) to ensure that this happens.

An HSR and deputy HSR play a pivotal role in gathering information about what the health and safety issues are for their work group. They work out ways to resolve issues occurring in their work group in consultation with management, the health and safety committee, and other HSRs from other work groups.

Consulting workers improves decisions about health and safety matters.

When consulting with workers you must:

  • share information 

  • give workers a reasonable opportunity to express their views and contribute to decision-making  

  • take those views into account before making decisions on health and safety matters, and 

  • advise workers of the outcome of consultations.  

Regular consultation is better than consulting on a case-by-case basis because it allows you to identify and fix potential problems early. 

Your workers are more likely to engage in consultation when their ideas and concerns about health and safety are taken seriously. You should encourage workers to: 

  • share their knowledge and experience, and 

  • report any work health and safety issues immediately so risks can be managed before an injury occurs. 

16th October 2018


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