Manufacturing News

Liberal Party calls for further amendments to OHS laws

The Liberal Party has called for delay and amendments to the harmonisation of OHS laws, claiming it is incorrect and is pushing to increase union power in South Australia.

Under Labor’s bill, Unions will have the power to enter work sites even where they don’t have any members there. 

The Liberal Opposition believes this bill is a massive full frontal assault on subcontractors and small business in SA, which will lead to significant increases in house prices. 

“For example, the House Industry Association have estimated the new laws will increase costs by $12,000 for a single story construction, and approximately $20,000 for a double story construction,” Shadow Industrial Relations Minister Rob Lucas said. 

“Furthermore, Government claims that this model bill will achieve harmonised legislation are incorrect. The bill has already been amended in New South Wales and will be amended in Western Australia. In addition, it is possible that amendments might also be moved in Victoria and Tasmania,” he said.  

Amendments to be moved by the Liberal Opposition include: 

• Protecting subcontractors and small businesses by ensuring business is only held responsible for those actions they control 

• Stopping any increase in the power of unions to enter work sites 

• Stopping any increase in powers of health and safety representatives to bring wider groups of people onto work sites 

• Retaining the right to silence to prevent self-incrimination 

The OHS laws will come into effect 1 January 2012.

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