Health and Safety Representatives (HSRs) play a key role in the Consultation process outlined in the Work Health and Safety Act 2011.
HSRs are elected by workers to represent the interests of members [workers] of that Work Group in terms of work health and safety matters. HSRs are elected for a term of 3 years.
Worker Representation and Participation Guide
The Worker Representation and Participation Guide, produced by Safe Work Australia, contains a very useful outline of all the legislative requirements relating to HSRs
Role of the Health and Safety Representative
Health and Safety Representatives are elected or chosen to represent the interests of a particular Work Groups (see Consultation for more about Work Groups and Consultation in general).
The primary power and function of an HSR is to represent workers in their work group in relation to health and safety matters at work. A HSR may also:
Information for HSR training providers
Health and Safety Representative (HSR) training is not a mandatory requirement under the Work Health and Safety Act 2011 (WHS Act). However, if a HSR requests training, a person conducting a business or undertaking (PCBU) must allow this to occur. This entitlement is outlined in Section 72 of the WHS Act.
What training is approved by WorkSafe ACT?
WorkSafe ACT approves the following courses of training in work health and safety:
A HSR is not able to exercise all their powers — issuing provisional improvement notices (PINs), directing cessation of work — if they have not completed a course of training approved by WorkSafe ACT.
Which HSR training courses are currently approved by WorkSafe ACT?
The following courses, previously approved under the Work Safety Act 2008, have been approved by WorkSafe, subject to certain conditions, as approved HSR training courses under the WHS Act 2011:
Approval of any further courses under the WHS Act 2011 will be listed on this web page.
Becoming a WorkSafe ACT approved provider of HSR training
WorkSafe ACT has developed two documents for training providers that will assist them to developing a HSR training courses for submission to WorkSafe ACT for approval.
The first document — Guide on how to become an Approved Provider of Health and Safety Representative Training — outlines the process for applying for approval to conduct HSR training. It includes information about:
The second document — Health and Safety Rrepresentative Training Development Resources — consists of:
Who can apply for approval to deliver initial and refresher HSR training?
A training organisation, company or sole trader may apply for approval to deliver initial and/or refresher HSR training.
When do these requirements commence?
These requirements apply to all applications for approval of both initial and refresher HSR training under the WHS Act made to WorkSafe ACT from 1 January 2012.
Employers must provide lists of HSRs to WorkSafe ACT
Section 74 of the WHS Act 2011 requires employers [PCBUs] to keep as list of the HSR and Deputy HSR [if there is one] for each Work Group.
Up-to-date copies of these lists must be displayed at the principal place of business and at any relevant workplaces.
The employer must also provide a copy of the up-to-date list to WorkSafe ACT as soon as practicable after it is prepared.
You can do this either by emailing a copy of the list to email@example.com or by positing it to:
The Training Coordinator WorkSafe ACT GPO Box 158 Canberra City, ACT 2601
Health and Safety Committees
Click here for advice re Health and Safety Committees.
For further information please contact WorkSafe ACT or email firstname.lastname@example.org.