Agriculture Safety Inquiry Welcomed - UnionsWA

Agriculture Safety Inquiry Welcomed

UnionsWA has welcomed the announced WorkSafe inquiry into work safety in the agricultural industry. The inquiry has been called following recent agricultural workplace fatalities.

Owen Whittle, Secretary, UnionsWA, said:

“There are no workplaces as dangerous as those in the agricultural industry.

“Many factors contribute to these dangers - work with heavy equipment, often being in remote location and isolated from the policing of safety laws, and too often using a workforce that is poorly trained or inadequately equipped for safety.

“A reliance by the agricultural industry on workers in insecure jobs, including for seasonal tasks, is also a factor as those in insecure jobs are fearful of losing work if they make a safety complaint.

"For some time, we have seen Agriculture continue to have high levels of workplace fatalities and significant injuries even adjusting for it having a low level of employment compared to other industries.

“This inquiry is a welcome step.

“Dangerous safety practices in one industry don’t stay there, they encourage a poor safety culture as working people, supervisors and businesses move across sectors.

“These poor practices cost lives and cause serious injury as well as imposing costs that are a burden to all businesses and working people."

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