NEW WORK HEALTH AND SAFETY (WHS) HARMONISATION
New Work Health and Safety laws replaced the Occupational Health and Safety (OHS) laws in all states and territories across Australia on 1 January 2012. The new legislation will replace the Occupational Health and Safety Act 2000 and Occupational Health and Safety Regulation 2001. Safe Work Australia developed model Work Health and Safety Regulations, Codes of Practice, guidance material and compliance and enforcement policies to support the model Work Health and Safety Act.
The new Work Health and Safety laws will provide greater consistency, certainty and clarity across Australia making it easier to understand your work health and safety duties. To assist business, industry and the community transition to the new legislation, transitional arrangements have been implemented. Codes of Practice provide practical guidance on how to meet the standards set out in the Work Health and Safety Act 2011 and Work Health and Safety Regulation 2011.
Each jurisdiction will go through the process of enacting its own Work Health and Safety legislation which mirrors the model laws. In some jurisdictions minor but necessary variations may be made to ensure consistency with relevant drafting protocols and other workplace health and safety laws and processes.
Information on the new Work Health and Safety Legisation and Codes of Practices can be found on the Safe Work Australia Website.