Employer Associations again urging caution with publication of ISO 45001

09 Mar 2018 |

The Australian Chamber of Commerce and Industry is again urging businesses to wait for a decision from Standards Australia’s Technical Committee on Occupational Health & Safety Management before moving to adopt the new international standard ISO 45001 in light of its expected publication next week.

“As we warned last year, there are a number of outstanding issues that need to be addressed,” Australian Chamber CEO, James Pearson, said today.

“These issues relate to the ability of businesses to viably comply with the international standard, and addressing any potential unintended consequences of the standard conflicting with existing Australian legislation.”

The finalisation of the standard internationally now allows Standards Australia’s Technical Committee to determine the best option for local adoption.

Associate Director Work Health and Safety, Jennifer Low, said “The devil is in the detail and Standards Australia hasn’t yet had the opportunity to evaluate the final version of ISO 45001 against the existing AS 4801 standard and within the context of our legislative and business environment.

“Given the number of issues we have identified, we don’t believe that it is possible at this point in time for Australia to adopt ISO 45001 as is, nor may we abandon the field. Consideration must therefore be given to alternatives such as modifying ISO 45001 to suit the local context, developing accompanying guidance for ISO 45001 implementation in Australia or modifying AS 4801 to incorporate desirable aspects of the international standard to align where possible.

“A new Australian safety management system standard is still some way off.  Further investigation of the issues raised, additional engagement with the very employers who will be the ones implementing whichever option is agreed too and more informed discussions around the Standards Australia table are needed.”​

Jennifer Low

Associate Director - Work Health and Safety

P  |  0438 789 782

E  |  [email protected]

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