On 25 October 2022 the NSW Government announced the appointment of the Hon. Robert McDougall KC to carry out an Independent Review of SafeWork NSW.
The Review will examine SafeWork NSW’s performance of its regulatory functions (including educational functions) under the Work Health and Safety Act 2011.
The scope of the Review is to inquire into, report on and where thought desirable make recommendations as to:
- The performance and effectiveness of SafeWork NSW’s compliance and enforcement functions. This part of the Review will consider complaints, inspections, investigations, and prosecutions, and will include consideration of SafeWork’s Triaging and Investigation Decision Making Panel processes.
- The performance and effectiveness of SafeWork NSW’s educational functions.
- The governance and culture of SafeWork NSW, including complaints as to alleged unlawful or undesirable conduct in the workplace.
- Appropriate measures to ensure that workers and their representatives (including Health & Safety Representatives), and the families of injured and deceased workers, have a genuine voice in the complaints, investigation, and enforcement processes.
The Review will not make determinations relating to specific work health and safety cases. The Review’s focus will be on identifying deficiencies and recommendations at the organisational level.
The Review will be carried out on the assumption of complete cooperation and full disclosure from the parties involved. The Review activities will be determined by the Independent Reviewer and are expected to include the following:
- Interviews with current and former SafeWork NSW staff.
- Interviews with representatives from other stakeholders (including, but not necessarily limited to, the Family and Injured Workers Support Group, industry and union representatives).
- Review of documents from SafeWork NSW, relevant Parliamentary documents and reviews, media articles and other relevant sources.
- Review of relevant enabling legislation including the Work Health and Safety Act 2011.
- Seeking and considering feedback obtained through a targeted stakeholder consultation and open public consultation (including a public call for submissions based on the Terms of Reference).
PSA strongly encourages members in Safework to make submissions in relation to the Review. If you choose to do so, please supply a copy of your submission to the Member Support Centre quoting reference number 197141.
Please also use this reference number if you wish us to submit feedback on your behalf. Your submissions will inform your union’s input into the Review.