> WHS regulator issues Christmas party warning and safety alert; > New WHS Code of Practice introduced in Qld; > Safety inspectors' powers increase with passing of OPGGS Bill; > Journey claims restored by NSW private member's Bill; and > New WorkSafe Vic chief and chair announced.
A major employer's proposed geographical boundaries for WHS work groups will help it tackle region-specific risks and won't prevent temporarily relocated workers from accessing health and safety representatives, a commission has ruled in upholding the arrangements.
In a long-running case that clarified right-of-entry laws for assisting health and safety representatives, the Federal Court has found a union official's breaches only deserved a low-range fine, in part because they probably improved the safety and efficiency of the relevant site.
The powers of elected health and safety reps are generally confined to their own work groups and don't extend to challenging an action, like a decision quashing an improvement notice, which affects other groups or workers, a commission has found.
An employer had a valid reason to sack a health and safety representative after a dispute over a new mobile phone policy, but the dismissal was harsh because he had attempted to avoid conflict, a commission has found.
The Federal Court has refused to restrain an employer from sacking an elected health and safety representative until his adverse action claim is resolved, after finding an injunction could undermine the employer's right to enforce its safety protocols.