Health and Safety Changes

Remember that thing we used to have before health and safety came along? It used to be called natural selection! All joking aside however, health and safety is an important issue for many industries and has recently been in the spotlight. This is due to the new health and safety regime set to come into place in April 2016.
So what’s new? What additional requirements will be imposed on top of the existing laws and regulations? Some of the changes include:
• Every person conducting a business or undertaking (PCBU) has a duty to do what they can within his/her influence and control to ensure the health and safety of staff and people affected by its work. PCBU has a broad definition and includes all persons who conduct a business or undertaking alone or with others. Furthermore, this will apply whether or not the business or undertaking is carried out for profit or gain. This definition will obviously capture farmers (including sharemilkers).
• A new due diligence duty is created for company directors to take reasonable steps to ensure that the company carrying out the business is meeting its health and safety obligations. Once again this will be directly relevant to many farmers, some of whom use limited liability companies to run their farming operations.

• There are certain obligations imposed on staff to take reasonable care and follow reasonable instructions.

• Every PCBU is to have effective staff participation practices and to engage with its staff.

If you are wanting to find out more about how to comply with these new requirements then please do not hesitate to contact us.