Health and Safety on Construction Site

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Health and Safety Personnel on a construction site

Health and Safety Representative (HSR)

A health and safety representative is a worker who has been elected by a work group to represent them on health and safety issues.

WHS representatives are nominated and appointed to represent your work site and its workers (including their views, interests and concerns). They can help you to raise any WHS issues or concerns that you may have.

Their responsibilities include:

  • To consult with the PCBU and workers, and provide information on WHS
  • To assist workers to raise WHS issues
  • To secure the participation and involvement of workers in health and safety matters
  • To cooperate with your PCBU in relation to WHS

A HSR represents the health and safety interests of a work group. There can be as many HSRs and deputy HSRs as needed after consultation, negotiation and agreement between workers and their PCBUs.

A PCBU must keep a current list of all HSRs and deputy HSRs and display a copy at the workplace. The list must also be given to Workplace Health and Safety Queensland (or your state regulatory body).

Health and Safety Committee

A Health and Safety Committee is a group including workers, HSRs and PCBUs that facilitates cooperation between a PCBU and workers to provide a safe place of work

A health and safety committee (HSC) facilitates cooperation between a PCBU and workers in developing and carrying out measures to ensure health and safety at work. This includes health and safety standards, rules and procedures for the workplace.

A PCBU must set up an HSC within two months of being requested to do so by an HSR, or by five or more workers in a workplace or when required by the WHS Regulation.

A PCBU can also establish an HSC on their own initiative. At least half of the members of a HSC must be workers that have not been nominated by the PCBU. A HSR can also consent to be a member of the committee and, when a workplace has more than one HSR, they can choose one or more to be members.

When agreement cannot be reached on the composition of an HSC, any party to the committee can request an inspector’s assistance to decide the matter. A HSC must meet at least once every three months and at any reasonable time at the request of at least half of the members of the committee.

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