Contributed by Anne Aziz-Parker, with Catherine Matthews and Richard Muir and current to March 2022.

WorkSafe ACT is a regulatory body and a business unit within the Workplace Protection Division of Access Canberra that forms part the Chief Minister Treasury, Economic Development Directorate. We work in partnership with governments, industry, employers and employees to implement harmonised work health and safety legislation and reforms to improve on health and safety through engagement, education and enforcement in the ACT. Through our engagement and education activities, we identify work, health and safety issues that may impact businesses or individuals. We provide a range of professional services and advice on protection for workers in the ACT to minimise regulatory burden.

We also:
  • develop and influence policy and strategies to strengthen work health and safety practices
  • regulate and implement WHS legislation and when needed, advise the Minister on issues relating to WHS
  • collect and analyse reports and data to design appropriate educational programs and mitigate risks to workers across the ACT
  • establish evidence-based intel and apply a risk-based approach on unsafe practices or misconduct
  • deliver a range of education programs such as The Apprentices and Young Workers Safety Audit program, seminars, ACT/NSW Cross Border Construction Project events and the Healthier Work program promoting healthier living.
As the regulator for work health and safety, WorkSafe ACT maintains, facilitates and promote the national harmonisation laws relating to work health and safety in the ACT.

WorkSafe ACT also has administration oversight for Workers Compensation Act 1951, ensuring that injured workers can return to work safely and timely through effective injury management and income support. In addition to its regulatory functions, WorkSafe ACT also has limited licencing functions providing licences and permits for individuals under the Work Health and Safety Act 2011 (the Act), the Dangerous Goods (Road Transport) Act 2009, the Dangerous Substances Act 2004, the Scaffolding and Lifts Act 1912, and the Machinery Act 1949. The Dangerous Substances (Explosives) Regulation 2004 provides for the issuing of licenses and/or permits relating to all aspects involving explosives.

WorkSafe ACT also licences self-insurers, approved insurers and rehabilitation providers under the Workers Compensation Act 1951.

The Workplace Safety and Industrial Relations Division within the ACT Government's Chief Minister, Treasury and Economic Development Directorate has responsibility for legislative amendments and policy matters associated with development and maintenance of the Territory's workers' compensation and health and safety laws.

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