“We must never accept injury, illness, or death as the cost of doing business".
Paul Bastian, AMWU National Secretary
Workers Memorial Day April 2019
Workers' Memorial Day (WMD), the international day which commemorates those workers who are killed or die as a result of work, is coming up soon, on 28 April.
Workers and their representatives all over the world mark the day, remember the dead and fight for the living.
In the last two years at least 4 AMWU sites have been directly affected by a workplace death. The young men being diagnosed with silicosis is a wake up call for employers and regulators.
There are commemorations across the country - click here for events.
And if you can't make to these, has your site considered a minutes silence on Friday 26th or Monday 29th
The Boland Review of WHS laws was released to the public on 25th February 2019. The AMWU is pleased with many of the recommendations - see above for the link to a flyer for your site
Boland recommended the introduction of industrial manslaughter laws that could see individual company directors punished for failing to take action to prevent workplace deaths. The recommendations also include reforms to strengthen dispute resolution and a prohibition on insurance against penalties.
AMWU National President, Andrew Dettmer urged all governments to adopt the Recommendations:
“Approximately every second day someone goes to work and doesn’t come home. For every fatality at a worksite we are seeing 6 others die of work-related illness and diseases.
Every worker deserves to come home safe. Our current laws are failing. The Government must say yes to these recommendations if they take the safety of workers seriously.
The AMWU strongly urges all Governments to take strong note of the Reviews’ recommendations and those of the 2018 Senate Inquiry into Industrial Deaths. Better Regulation, better rights for workers and bigger penalties are essential if we as a community are to protect the health and safety of our workers”
AMWU HSRs made strong submissions to the Review. There are no Recommendations that we oppose.
Poor quality air and exposure to dangerous dusts and fumes can be fatal.
The air we breathe has a big impact on our health and being exposed to poor quality air not only makes us vulnerable to serious health issues that are irreversible, but they can also be deadly.
The adverse impacts on our health range from cancer, stiffening of the lungs, asthma, bronchitis and emphysema.
Exposure to dusts, fumes, particles, vapours and gasses vary according to occupation and health and safety practices.
Some of the high risk occupations include, spray painters, welders, diesel mechanics and some food workers.
If you work in these areas it is essential that ventilation systems are adequately and regularly maintained.
If you have any concerns about potential exposure at your workplace, please speak to an AMWU organiser or contact your branch.
Remember, prevention is always best.
WORK FROM HEIGHTS SAFELY
Knowing how to safely work from heights could save your life.
For further information, there is good advice in the Code of Practice on Fall prevention, CLICK HERE.
CONSULTATION IS THE LAW!
Consultation is not only essential to workplace Health and Safety best practice but it's the law.
WHAT CAUSED IT?
When investigating injuries/near misses . . . follow the chain of events to find the cause.
Hearing loss is 100% Preventable but 100% Irreversible:
Did you know that nearly one in five workers will suffer hearing loss over the course of their working life -- join the AMWU campaign to lower the noise levels in our workplaces.
If you are concerned or unsure about the noise levels at your workstation, or in your workplace, talk to your HSR immediately.
Injured or ill:
AMWU HSRs and Deputies can sign up to our FaceBook page -- AMWU Health and Safety Reps.
A mobile phone app called ACM Check (short for “Asbestos-Containing Material Check”) has been developed by researchers at Curtin University in WA. The app aims to raise awareness about asbestos in residential settings. ACM Check is available for free from the App Store [click here] and Google Play [click here]. Check it out - and share it.
If you wish to register your exposure to asbestos - at home or at work - you can register with the Asbestos Safety and Eradication Agency