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Time Requirements re HSRs and Health & Safety Committee Members

Managing the health and safety risks in your workplace can be quite time consuming in the current Covid-19 risks environment so we have compiled a number of time requirements for you regarding HSRs and Health & Safety Committee members.

Health & Safety Representatives

Time to negotiate having a HSR

If one or more workers want an election carried out so that they can have an HSR to represent them, the PCBU must commence negotiations with the workers about that within 14 days (Sections 50 to 52 WHS Act).

HSR Re-election Time

An HSR for a work group has that position for 3 years and then an election must be held and the HSR is eligible for re-election (Section 64 WHS Act).

Completion of HSR Course deadline

If a person starts the HSR course but for whatever reason doesn’t complete the training, SafeWork allows 6 months from the date of the first day of the course to complete any missed days. If it goes over 6 months, the person will need to redo the whole course.

Enough time for HSR to carry out powers and functions

The HSR must be allowed to spend enough time as is reasonably necessary to exercise their powers and perform their functions under the WHS Act (Section 70 (2) WHS Act).

Up to date list of HSRs

A PCBU must ensure that a list of each health and safety representative and deputy health and safety representative (if any) for each work group of workers is prepared and kept up to date, and displayed in the workplace and accessible to all work groups (Section 74 WHS Act).

Start HSR course target

When a person has been elected as an HSR and has asked to do the official SafeWork NSW course, SafeWork NSW requires that the HSR begins the course within 3 months after their election. (Section 72 WHS Act).

Health & Safety Committee

Start of Committee deadline

A PCBU must establish a health and safety committee within 2 months after being requested to do so by;

(i) a HSR for a work group of workers carrying out work at that workplace, or

(ii) 5 or more workers at that workplace (Section 75 WHS Act)

How often the Committee must meet

A health and safety committee must meet at least once every 3 months, and at any reasonable time at the request of at least half of the members of the committee (Section 78 WH Act).

Enough time for Committee Members to attend meetings or carry out functions

Committee members must be allowed to spend enough time as is reasonably necessary to attend meetings or carry out their functions as a Committee member (Section 79 WHS Act).

19th August 2020

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