A health and safety agency

Simon Bridges has announced:

The Government’s focus on significantly lifting New Zealand’s workplace health and safety record is behind the establishment of a new, stand-alone agency, says Labour Minister Simon Bridges.

The creation of a stand-alone Crown agent was a key recommendation of the Royal Commission on the Coal Mine Tragedy.

“The new agency will have a dedicated focus on health and safety and underlines the Government’s strong commitment to addressing New Zealand’s workplace fatality and serious injury rates,” says Mr Bridges.

“We have a firm target of a 25 per cent reduction of these rates by 2020.

This was a key recommendation of the Royal Commission, and you expect the Government to implement all the recommendations unless there is a very good reason not to. The Pike River tragedy is a good example of what happens when there is an inadequate focus on health and safety.

Of course no workplace can be made free from risk, and nor should it be. Health and safety is always a balancing act. Otherwise we would engineer cars to not drive faster than 30 km/hr.

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