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Ministers responsible for WHS asked Safe Work Australia to review the content and operation of the model WHS laws in 2018. This was to meet the Ministers’ commitment to review the model WHS laws regularly and ensure they continue operating effectively. Safe Work Australia appointed independent reviewer Ms Marie Boland to conduct the review.

The review was completed in 2018 and the Review of the model WHS laws: Final report is with WHS ministers for consideration.

The report recommendations will be subject to a regulation impact statement process before WHS ministers respond later in 2019. Safe Work Australia will undertake this process in accordance with the Council of Australian Governments best practice regulation guidelines. This will commence in the coming months with the release of a consultation regulation impact statement and call for submissions.

Review scope

The review examined how the model WHS laws are operating in practice, whether they are achieving the objectives stated in the model WHS Act or if they have resulted in unintended consequences.

In particular, Ms Boland explored:

  • what is working and why
  • will it continue to work in the future
  • what doesn’t work and why, and
  • what we could do to make it work.

The review terms of reference were set by WHS ministers.

Consultation process

Public consultation for the review was conducted during 2018.

The consultation summary provides a summary of the views and experiences shared during the consultation meetings, in discussion forums and in written submissions.

Submissions and contributions to the discussion forums are available on our engage page.

Stay updated

Subscribe to the ‘work health and safety laws’ mailing list to receive alerts and updates about next steps for the review during 2019.

Independent reviewer

Marie Boland was appointed to lead the review based on her wealth of experience in WHS policy and regulation.

Ms Boland was the Executive Director of SafeWork SA from 2015 to 2017. Before this time, she held various senior positions at SafeWork SA, including playing a key role in implementing the model WHS Act and Regulations in South Australia and being actively involved in the policy and legislative work surrounding South Australia’s referral of industrial relations powers to the Commonwealth.

Since leaving SafeWork SA, Ms Boland has set up a workplace relations consultancy, undertaking work for the Public Service Association of South Australia and the Commonwealth Department of Employment to produce a report into the WHS and workers’ compensation issues arising from the gig economy. She was also appointed Presiding Officer of the South Australian Construction Industry Long Service Leave Board on 1 July 2017 for a five-year term.

Ms Boland has a Master of Arts (History) and a law degree from the University of Adelaide. She was admitted as a practitioner of the Supreme Court of South Australia in 2007.

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Last modified on Monday 25 February 2019 [9056|88956]