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COVID-19
in Victoria:
A union
perspective
CSG July 2021 Presenter: Dominic Melling, Lead Organiser, OHS Team, VTHC

COVID-19 response in Victoria: A union perspective

Presentation by: Dominic Melling, Lead Organiser, OHS Team, Victorian Trades Hall Council, Victorian Trades Hall Council

CSG Zoom meeting video now available (members only)
Presentation package now available (members only)

The COVID-19 crisis brought some major challenges to unions affiliated with the Victorian Trades Hall Council (VTHC), their members and workers. These challenges, along with lessons learned and solutions, were discussed by Dominic Melling, Lead Organiser of the OHS Team at the VTHC in a zoom presentation to Central Safety Group on Tuesday, 13 July.
Dominic’s talk covered essential workers who reported to their usual workplaces throughout the lockdowns as well as people working from home. He reviewed the structural problems that facilitated the spread of COVID-19 and the Union’s role in advising Health and Safety Representatives (HSRs) and members. Using case studies from high risk industries, he discussed what happened when OHS structures and procedures failed and what lessons can be learned from these failures.
The presentation outlined VTHC initiatives to support HSRs and workers, and Unions’ lobbying efforts that led to changes in Government policy designed to protect workers and the community and to eliminate the spread of COVID-19.

The presenter:

Dominic Melling has been the Lead Organiser of the OHS Team at the Victorian Trades Hall Council since January 2020. In this role he works with affiliated unions in their collective efforts to campaign for safer workplaces and better conditions for workers. Recent examples of campaigns include the introduction of industrial manslaughter as an offence; exposure standards to crystalline silica and the introduction of psychological health regulation. Dominic also assists WorkSafe Victoria by liaising with relevant VTHC affiliates in relation to health and safety and workers’ compensation matters. After graduating in law from Monash University, he had extensive experience representing workers in both industrial and health and safety matters. Prior to working at VTHC, Dominic worked with the National Union of Workers as an Industrial Officer, Organiser and Trainer.

 
Human
Factors &
Human Error
CSG June 2021 Presenter: Dr Kate Branford, Senior Human Factors Specialist, V/Line

Human factors and human error

Presentation by: Dr Kate Branford, Senior Human Factors Specialist, V/Line

Presentation package now available (members only)

Human Factors issues constitute a significant source of risk in many industries. Human error contributes to an estimated 60-80% of incidents, while other Human Factors issues also play a part in a large proportion of incidents.
Understanding human error, how it contributes to safety incidents and how it can be managed, was the subject of a zoom talk by Dr Kate Branford on 8 June, 2021.
Kate is the Senior Human Factors Specialist at V/Line, which operates Victoria’s regional public transport network, and has worked in this role for seven years.She spoke about what Human Factors is, how it relates to human error and how it can be applied in the workplace to help improve health and safety performance.
The rail industry attracted her due to its collaborative approach to safety and the many opportunities for improvement; she gave examples of these in her talk.

The presenter:

Dr Kate Branford studied at the ANU, majoring in Sociology, with a focus on industrial accidents. She wrote her Honours thesis on the role of blame in accident investigation and then completed an industry-based Doctorate in Human Factors with the Defence Science and Technology Organisation. Her supervisor was Professor Andrew Hopkins, who is internationally recognised for his ground-breaking work in industrial safety and accident analysis. Before joining V/Line in 2014, Kate worked as a Human Factors consultant focusing on defence, aviation and nuclear power projects. At V/Line her role includes error management, incident investigation, Rail Resource Management and supporting Human Factors integration into rail projects and changes.

 
Safety
Benefits
of Technology
CSG May 2021 Presenter: Gavin Kenny, Manager SHEQ-Service Delivery, Melbourne Water

Using technology to make work safer

Presentation by: Gavin Kenny, Manager SHEQ-Service Delivery, Melbourne Water

CSG Zoom meeting video now available (members only)
Presentation package now available (members only)

Melbourne Water shared how technology has improved its safety systems and performance in a zoom presentation to Central Safety Group on Tuesday, 11 May. Gavin Kenny, Manager SHEQ - Service Delivery at Melbourne Water, has introduced a number of digital technology improvements to safety processes there.
Melbourne Water is a statutory body which supplies high-quality water, provides reliable sewerage services, integrates drainage systems to prevent flooding and enhances waterways and land for Melbourne and its surrounds. Gavin spoke about the changes involved, how they were introduced and the resulting efficiency gains.
These new systems are integrated with and supported by the organisation’s existing IT systems and range from large-scale solutions, such as VR design, to the smaller-scale, where policies are adapted to a simple app. Gavin described the transition from using cumbersome, paper-based processes to easy-to-use digital systems. Among other things, this has made safety data at Melbourne Water more transparent and easy to access, making it easier to analyse trends.

The presenter:

Gavin Kenny has been with Melbourne Water since 2016, where he has held a number of specialist safety improvement roles. Before that, his career included senior roles in HSE at Worley Parsons and ABB. He has an honours degree in science from Deakin University and qualifications in OHS and Project Management. It is never too late to join and support Central Safety Group. At $75 per calendar year.

 
Musculoskeletal
Issues -
What’s New
CSG April 2021 Presenter: David Trembearth, Safety Business Partner, Coles

Musculoskeletal issues – what’s new in risks and prevention

Presentation by: David Trembearth, Safety Business Partner, Coles

CSG Zoom meeting video now available (members only)
Presentation package now available (members only)

Work-related Musculoskeletal Disorders (WMSDs), often referred to as ‘Body Stressing’, are the highest category of serious workers’ compensation claims for Australian workers, representing 36% of all claims in 2017-18.
Research and experience show there is a lot can be done to prevent these injuries, which will be the topic of a talk by David Trembearth to Central Safety Group via Zoom on Tuesday, 13 April at noon.
David chaired the working group that developed a position statement on WMSDS for the Human Factors and Ergonomics Society in 2020. He will provide an overview of this and talk about evidence-based causes of WMSDs as well as intervention strategies for the prevention and management of these injuries.
Musculoskeletal injuries can affect any worker, not just manual labourers, says David. It can happen in any workplace and cover a wide range of life-changing lower back and repetitive strain injuries.
Significantly, these injuries can result from both physical and psychological hazards in the workplace. They also present psychosocial hazards and are recognised as critical workplace risk factors.

The presenter:

David Trembearth has had a long career providing expertise in ergonomics and human factors to small industry, government and large commercial enterprises. He is currently Safety Business Partner with Coles, providing technical and operational safety support to diverse business units. He also teaches Occupational Ergonomics to students in RMIT’s postgraduate OHS Management program. David is a Certified Professional Ergonomist with the Human Factors & Ergonomics Society Australia Inc. and a Certified Chartered Generalist OHS Professional and Fellow of the Australian Institute of Health & Safety.

 
Hospital Safety
during the
Pandemic
CSG March 2021 Presenter: Christina Rennick, General Manager Health, Safety and Wellbeing, St Vincent’s Hospital, Melbourne

Hospital safety during the pandemic

Presentation by: Christina Rennick, General Manager, Health Safety & Wellbeing, St Vincent’s Hospital, Melbourne

CSG Zoom meeting video now available (members only)
Presentation package now available (members only)

When the Covid-19 crisis exploded just over a year ago, the demand for special safety measures in our hospitals was massive, sudden and urgent. Christina Rennick, General Manager Health, Safety and Wellbeing at Melbourne’s St Vincent’s Hospital, gave a presentation via Zoom on 9 March about how her workplace responded.
The hospital has a big and complex structure, a workforce of 7,000, and a large number of patients and visitors to protect. Beyond implementing large-scale basic requirements for Covid protection, the safety team had to develop new rules and systems, learn from experience and adapt. This has been ongoing as knowledge of the coronavirus unfolds and the situation in the community changes.
Christina spoke not only about physical safety measures, but also the need to monitor and manage the wellbeing of people in the hospital system during this time.

The presenter:

Christina Rennick has worked in the Occupational Health and Safety field for over 25 years. She has been in her current role as General Manager Health, Safety and Wellbeing at Melbourne’s St Vincent’s Hospital for nearly six years. Before that, she was with Mercy Health and held different roles in a number of other organisations, starting out in the health industry then later returning to it. Christina started her career as an Occupational Therapist and, with the ergonomic work she still undertakes, has retained her registration. She is also a Committee member of Central Safety Group.

 
Covid-19 and
Workplace
Safety
CSG December 2020 Presenter: Professor David Caple OM

What Covid-19 means for workplace safety

Presentation by: Professor David Caple AM, OHS Consultant and Adjunct Professor, Centre for Ergonomics & Human Factors, La Trobe University, David Caple & Associates

CSG Zoom meeting video now available (members only)
Presentation package now available (members only)

2020 – what a year! Central Safety Group wrapped it up with the subject that has had such an impact on our lives and work these past eight months.
Professor David Caple discussed Covid-19 and workplace safety via zoom on Tuesday 8 December. David has been working on Covid-related projects with the healthcare and government sectors during the crisis.
He reflected on the psychological and physical risks, ways these can be managed and what long-lasting impacts coronavirus could have on the workplace. He then opened the session for questions and discussion, in which participants were encouraged to talk about what is being done in their own industry or workplace. It was a great session!

The presenter:

Professor David Caple AM, is a leading figure in occupational health and safety here and overseas. He has advised a wide range of businesses, industry groups and public sector organisations, and has worked with Australian and overseas governments on work health and safety strategy. He is currently an OHS consultant and Adjunct Professor, Centre for Ergonomics & Human Factors, La Trobe University.

 
Web
Safety
Risks
CSG November 2020 Presenter: Speaker: Michael Connory, CyberCertified

Web safety – are you taking risks?

Presentation by: Michael Connory, CyberCertified, CyberCertified

CSG Zoom meeting video now available (members only)

Cyber crime is at an all-time high with so many people working from home and shopping online. Most of us could do a lot to improve our cyber security.
Michael Connory of CyberCertified gave invaluable advice and answered questions on this topic during a lunchtime zoom presentation to Central Safety Group on Tuesday 17 November.
As one of Australia’s leading voices in cyber security, Michael’s session gave viewers a practical demonstration and plenty of useful tips.

The presenter:

Michael Connory of CyberCertified has had over 20 years’ experience in the global security sector, and has held a number of senior roles with companies specialising in this field. He is a strong advocate for better privacy protection for individuals and businesses, and is often called upon to give expert commentary in the media.

 
Victorian
OHS Data
Analysis

CSG July 2020 Presenter: Barry Naismith, OHS Intros

What does the data reveal about the state of OHS in Victoria?

Presentation by: Barry Naismith, OHS Intros

Presentation package now available (members only)

CSG Talks LogoWelcome to the fifth in a series of videos exclusive to Central Safety Group while normal physical meetings are suspended.

What does the data reveal about the state of OHS in Victoria?
Barry Naismith has once again produced a fascinating and frank analysis of the current state of OHS in Victoria.
Should we stay the course or shoot the rapids? That’s the question Barry poses, offering some invaluable insights and assessments based on his review of the latest full-year data from WorkSafe Victoria and other sources.
You can enjoy it here in PowerPoint form, provided by Central Safety Group as part of our video series during the Covid shutdown.
Says leading blogger Kevin Jones, "This level of analysis and interpretation is rarely available outside of formal academic research, and Naismith provides the all-important social and political context from which much academic occupational health and safety (OHS) research shies."
This presentation is based on Barry’s most recent research paper "Deaths at Work in Victoria 2019", available to financial members.

The presenter:

Barry Naismith spent more than 14 years with the Victorian WorkCover Authority before working independently as an OHS consultant. This currently includes working with Uniting Victoria on a program to reduce the impact of work harms on the community. Barry has qualifications in science from Melbourne University and media studies from RMIT as well as practical qualifications in OHS/HSR. He has worked previously as a journalist and editor.

 
Safety Shake-up
across the
Tasman -Update

 CSG July 2020 Presenter: Speaker: Nan Austin, Nan Austin, Consultant, Management Systems Consulting & Auditing

Safety Shake-up Across The Tasman Update

Presentation by: Nan Austin, Consultant, Consultant, Management Systems Consulting & Auditing

CSG Talks LogoWelcome to the fourth in a series of videos exclusive to Central Safety Group while normal physical meetings are suspended.

Safety shake-up across The Tasman-update.
An interesting insight into OHS in New Zealand is provided by Nan Austin, who recently spent almost four years as Manager, Health and Safety at the University of Waikato on New Zealand’s North Island.
The death of 28 miners in an underground explosion at New Zealand’s Pike River Coal Mine ten years ago led to the call for a major inquiry into the country’s safety laws. The result was a major re-engineering of New Zealand’s safety systems with the introduction of the new Health and Safety Work Act in 2016.
Nan gives a first-hand account of some of the safety reforms in New Zealand, and how the new system is working out. This talk is of particular interest to anyone who works for an organisation with operations in New Zealand or, indeed, to anyone contemplating a move across the Tasman and looking for job opportunities in the field of health and safety.
Note: This video is an abridged and updated version of a presentation Nan gave to CSG in November 2019.

The presenter:

Prior to her time in New Zealand, Nan Austin held a number of senior national safety roles in Australia. This included Manager, Work Health and Safety at the Red Cross Lifeblood and National OHS Manager at Healthscope. Throughout her career Nan has specialised in the development of auditable systems for safety and injury management. Her work experience has been complemented by studies at Masters level in Business Administration and Personal Injury Management. Nan is also Vice-President of Central Safety Group.

 
Workplace
Safety in
Pandemic
Times

CSG June 2020 Presenter:  Dr Natasha Lazareski, Managing Director, PsyFlex

Building safety consciousness in pandemic times – How to ensure people follow OHS guidelines in your workplace

Presentation by: Dr Natasha Lazareski Managing Director, PsyFlex

CSG Talks Logo 2Welcome to the third in a series of videos exclusive to Central Safety Group while normal physical meetings are suspended.

Building safety consciousness in pandemic times – How to ensure people follow OHS guidelines in your workplace.
Returning to the workplace after the Covid-19 shutdown presents OHS challenges from both a physical and psychological perspective.
In this video, Dr Natasha Lazareski talks about how OHS managers can help employees adjust to the new reality and pandemic-safe workplaces. She outlines an easy to apply guide for employees to embrace the new safety requirements and interact with respect and tolerance towards others. As an occupational health and behavioural science specialist, Natasha offers six helpful points in this video for managing occupational and psychosocial risk in a post-lockdown workplace that requires everyone to comply with Covid-19 guidelines.
Natasha explains that we all feel differently about this new situation, and while we cannot control our feelings, we have control over our actions. At work our actions should show respect, compassion, caring and understanding towards those who have different feelings about the impact of Covid-19.

The presenter:

Natasha Lazareski is a medical doctor, specialising in occupational health, with 21 years of experience in Australian organisations. She is also trained in Acceptance and Commitment Therapy (ACT), a mindfulness-based cognitive behavioural therapy. In 2006, in the wake of the SARS pandemic, as medical and injury management services manager at IAG, Natasha was actively engaged in developing an organisational response to a possible influenza pandemic. At the time, medical experts knew that another airborne or droplet-borne pandemic was imminent. Natasha has been following COVID 19 developments closely since January and has been supporting workplaces worldwide with their response to infection control and occupational stress management.

 
A Very
Public
Tragedy

CSG May 2020 Presenter: Sue Bottrell, Lawyer, Contractor Safe

A very public tragedy – but who is really responsible?

Presentation by: Sue Bottrell, Lawyer, Contractor Safe

CSG Talks Logo 2Welcome to the second in a series of videos exclusive to Central Safety Group while normal physical meetings are suspended.

This presentation should not be missed by anyone responsible for safety and risk management in transport, logistics or supply chain operations. In an incident that sent shockwaves through the community, four Victorian police officers parked beside Melbourne’s Eastern Freeway were killed when hit by a truck on 22 April this year.
When looking at who is potentially liable for prosecution for the incident, lawyer and safety specialist Sue Bottrell has some interesting answers. Sue says a range of regulations and several prosecuting bodies, including WorkSafe Victoria, the National Heavy Vehicle Regulator and Police, could potentially become involved. They could commence prosecutions of the truck driver and others, including the transport operator who employed the driver, under the WHS regulation, Heavy Vehicle National Law and Criminal law.

The presenter:

Sue Bottrell has worked in occupational health and safety and workers compensation rehabilitation for the past 20 years. Sue has postgraduate qualifications in OHS and law, and is a practising lawyer in safety and employment law. She was the first safety professional in Australia to become a Certified Chartered Generalist OHS Professional Member of the Australian Institute of Health and Safety. She is a specialist in the legal and safety aspects of the management of contractor safety, and regularly speaks and publishes on this topic and acts as an expert witness. Sue is also a specialist in the application of the National Heavy Vehicle Law under Chain of Responsibility obligations. She is the AIHS representative for the current review of the Heavy Vehicle National Law being undertaken by the National Transport Commission.

 
A Look
at some
New Thinking

CSG May 2020 Presenter:  Kevin Jones, safetyatworkblog.com

A look at some new thinking

Presentation by: Kevin Jones Freelance writer, SafetyAtWorkBlog

CSG Talks Logo 2Welcome to the first of a series of videos exclusive to Central Safety Group while normal physical meetings are suspended.
Some new books about key OHS issues are discussed in this 10-minute video by Kevin Jones, author of the influential SafetyAtWorkBlog.

The Bystander Effect: The Psychology of Courage and Inaction
Author: US psychologist Professor Catherine Sanderson
This book deals with the psychology and context of expecting people to intervene in unsafe workplace situations. Kevin says it includes some useful insights and advice on dealing with bullying.

The COVID19 Pandemic: Lessons on building more equal and sustainable societies
Authors: Professor Michael Quinlan and a dozen of his global colleagues
Kevin discusses this highly topical research paper that examines whether things could, and should, change in the workplace because of the current situation, and the potential implications for OHS.

Michael Tooma on Mental Health
Author: Michael Tooma
Kevin mentions several topics of interest in this book: the legal implications of workplace bullying; industrial manslaughter, and the importance of both managerial and organisational approaches to mental health in the workplace.

We hope you enjoy Kevin’s discussion. Details of the publications can be found under Further Reading in the Members section of our website: www.centralsafetygroup.com.

The presenter:

Kevin Jones has been a consultant, writer and commentator on OHS matters for many years, and is a Life Member of Central Safety Group. He is well known for his award-winning SafetyAtWorkBlog.com, as well as a podcast series of interviews with leading safety experts safetyoz.podbean.com

 
Dealing with
Customer
Abuse
CSG March 2020 Presenter: Kenn Rogers, Safety Team Leader, The Reject Shop

Dealing with Customer Abuse

Presentation by: Kenn Rogers, Safety Team Leader, The Reject Shop

Presentation package now available (members only)

Customer abuse is a growing problem in the retail industry that can take a heavy toll on workers’ confidence and wellbeing. Of the Reject Shop’s 6,000 team members, a majority are part-time and 60% are under the age of 25. This means many are inexperienced and particularly vulnerable when faced with customer aggression.
Kenn Rogers, Safety Team Leader of the Reject Shop, outlined a new approach to the problem in a lunchtime presentation to Central Safety Group on 10 March. This included a trial program the variety discount retailer has been helping to pilot. Known as the Respect and Resilience program, it has proved a great success in reducing incidents at the stores where the trial was implemented.
Kenn spoke about how the program helps team members manage themselves and respond better to customer aggression, as well as how changes to a store environment can help influence customer behaviours.
Kenn also outlined an in-house program he has developed to make staff more aware and responsive to manual handling issues.

The presenter:

Kenn Rogers moved to a career in safety 16 years ago after working as a store manager with Dan Murphy’s. He joined the Reject Shop three years ago after working in safety roles with Dan Murphy’s, Myer and Woolworths.

 
Rebuilding
Safety
Culture
CSG February 2020 Presenter:  Mary Kikas, Action OHS Consulting

Rebuilding safety culture - a case study

Presentation by: Mary Kikas, Action OHS Consulting

Presentation package now available (members only)

When employee morale, trust and job satisfaction plummet in the wake of major changes, how do you restore a strong safety culture? Mary Kikas faced that exact challenge when asked to help the Health and Safety team of a utilities company that had undergone a significant change management process and redundancies.
She outlined what happened in a presentation to Central Safety Group at its first meeting for 2020 on 11 February.
Mary discussed the principles and approach adopted and the setbacks and obstacles that had to be overcome. In addition, she described step-by-step what it took to drive effective risk management and improve safety culture.

The presenter:

Mary Kikas has had a long career in health and safety management, working both in-house and as a specialist consultant. Her background includes roles across a range of industries including manufacturing, rail, construction, aged care and disability. Mary also conducts work as an expert witness in matters of Common Law, Public and Product liability, failures in building regulations and TAC accidents. She is currently an OHS and Ergonomics Consultant with Action OHS Consulting. Initially qualified as a physiotherapist, Mary has obtained tertiary qualifications in Occupational Health and Safety Management and in Ergonomics. She is a certified OHS Management System Auditor and has held office with a number of professional committees.

 
Safety
Shake-up
across the
Tasman
CSG November 2019 Presenter:  Nan Austin, Management Systems Consulting & Auditing

Safety Shake-up across The Tasman

Presentation by: Nan Austin, Consultant, Management Systems Consulting & Auditing

Presentation package now available (members only)

The death of 28 miners in an underground explosion at New Zealand’s Pike River Coal Mine nine years ago led to anger, accusations and the call for a major inquiry into the country’s safety laws. The result was a major re-engineering of New Zealand’s safety systems with the introduction of the new Health and Safety Work Act in 2016.
Nan has just returned to Melbourne after three years as Manager, Health and Safety at the University of Waikato on New Zealand’s North Island. She gave a first-hand account of the safety reforms in New Zealand, and how the new system is working out, concluding that there is still a long way to go in achieving an effective proactive approach.

The presenter:

Prior to her three years as Health and Safety Manager at the University of Waikato in New Zealand, Nan held a number of senior national safety roles in Australia. This included Manager, Work Health and Safety at the Red Cross Blood Bank and National OHS Manager at Healthscope. Throughout her career Nan has specialised in the development of auditable systems for safety and injury management. Her work experience has been complemented by studies at Masters level in Business Administration and Personal Injury Management.

 
Dealing
with Safety
Clutter
CSG October 2019 Presenter: Dr David Provan, Managing Director, Forge Works, & Lecturer & Researcher, Griffith University, Queensland.

Safety Clutter and What to do About it

Presentation by: Dr David Provan, Managing Director, Forge Works

Presentation package now available (members only)

Does OHS in your workplace feel weighed down by paperwork, rules and procedures? Dr David Provan said this can be due to ‘safety clutter’, described in a study he co-authored as "the accumulation of safety procedures, documents, roles and activities that are performed in the name of safety, but do not contribute to the safety of operational work." Worse, this can create negative beliefs and attitudes to safety, according to the research.
David spoke about how to identify ‘safety clutter’, what to do about it and how to remove it in a lunchtime presentation to Central Safety Group on Thursday, 10 October.
He said that clutter can take the form of too many rules and procedures, duplication and ‘tick the box’ safety activities. This can include meetings, audits, observations and investigation processes that are not actually reducing the risk of safety incidents. David explained how to ‘de-clutter’ without affecting legal compliance and certification.

The presenter:

Dr David Provan, a leading safety thinker and practitioner, is the former General Manager, Health, Safety and Environment for Origin Energy. He has more than 20 years of safety management experience across several high-hazard industries with international operations. David is the founder of safety consultancy firm Forge Works, and also a part-time lecturer and researcher at Queensland’s Griffith University. He has a Bachelor of Behavioural Science (Psychology), Masters of Health Science (Risk Management and OHS), Masters of Business Administration (Finance) and a PhD in Safety Science, where his research thesis was titled, “What is the role of a Safety Professional? The identity, practice and future of the profession”.

 
Workplaces
Outpacing
OHS Standards
CSG September 2019 Presenter: Professor David Caple AM

When Workplace Changes Outpace OHS Standards

Presentation by: Professor David Caple AM, OHS Consultant and Adjunct Professor, Centre for Ergonomics & Human Factors, La Trobe University, David Caple & Associates

Presentation package now available (members only)

More and more jobs today require working on mobile devices including laptops, Surface Pros and tablets. When it comes to assessing ergonomic risks linked to this, compliance is measured by long-established OHS Codes and Australian Standards. But how relevant and effective are the current Standards?
Professor David Caple discussed this issue in a lunchtime presentation to Central Safety Group on 10 September, 2019. David explained that today we have ‘agile work’ in offices while Australian Standards and equipment have been designed for static workplaces. The term ‘agile’ describes the fact that a lot of computer work now is not done at conventional office workstations. This means existing Australian Standards for task chairs and workstations are potentially based on assumptions that, in many instances, are no longer appropriate. David looked at the current gaps and the need for change and offered some recommendations.

The presenter:

Professor David Caple AM has been a leading figure in occupational health and safety in Australia for many years. He has advised a wide range of businesses, industry groups and public sector organisations, and worked with Australian and overseas governments on work health and safety strategy. He is an OHS consultant and Adjunct Professor, Centre for Ergonomics & Human Factors, La Trobe University.

 
The Real
Impact of
Shift Work
CSG August 2019 Presenter: Speaker: Dr Tracey Sletten, Senior Research Fellow - Turner Institute for Brain and Mental Health, Monash University and Project Leader - Cooperative Research Centre for Alertness, Safety and Productivity

The real impact of shift work and workplace fatigue

Presentation by: Dr Tracey Sletten, Senior Research Fellow - Turner Institute for Brain and Mental Health, Monash University and Project Leader - Cooperative Research Centre for Alertness, Monash University

Presentation package now available (members only)

It is estimated around 20% of the Australian workforce is involved in some form of shift work, many of them in roles critical for public safety. The challenges of shift work and occupational fatigue have long been acknowledged, but recent research has increased understanding of the negative consequences of working against the body clock.
Dr Tracey Sletten of Monash University and the Cooperative Research Centre for Alertness, Safety and Productivity presented some of the latest findings and recommendations in this area at the August meeting of Central Safety Group.
Tracey has been working closely with several industries including aviation, transport and healthcare, researching the effects of shift work and sleep loss on workers in their operations. This work has included interventions to improve alertness, health and safety.
As well as the best way to manage shift work, Tracey discussed the need for cultural change to address the growing incidence of sleep loss in the general population linked to modern lifestyles.

The presenter:

Dr Tracey Sletten is a Senior Research Fellow with the Turner Institute for Brain and Mental Health, Monash University, and serves as a Project Leader with the Cooperative Research Centre for Alertness, Safety and Productivity. She has also held research positions in the US and UK. Dr Sletten frequently consults nationally and internationally, conducting training and education, analysing work schedules and conducting fatigue assessments for industry. She holds a PhD in Psychology from the University of South Australia.

 
Safety & the
Aged Care
Sector
CSG July 2019 Presenter: Speaker: Michael Carley, Manager, Safety and Risk at Villa Maria Catholic Homes

Safety and the aged care sector

Presentation by: Michael Carley, Manager, Safety and Risk, Villa Maria Catholic Homes

Presentation package now available (members only)

The aged care sector is amongst the fastest growing sectors in Australia. Employment in this area has exploded, growing 36% in the past five years – three times the rate of growth across all other occupations.
The particular OHS challenges for this industry were discussed by Michael Carley, Safety and Risk, Villa Maria Catholic Homes at the July meeting of Central Safety Group.
Michael spoke about the common hazards and risks in safety management in aged care. He also discussed current trends, gaps and recommended solutions.

The presenter:

Before taking up his role in Villa Maria Catholic homes in mid-2018, Michael was Health and Safety Manager at ASIC (Australian Securities and Investments Commission) and Manager, Health and Safety for Macquarie University. Before that, his career included roles in Ageing, Disability and Home Care in the Department of Human Services. Michael holds a Bachelor of Science (Psychology) from Curtin University, WA, a Masters of Occupational Health and Safety and a Postgraduate Diploma in psychology rehabilitation.

 
Real Life
Consequences
of Workplace
Accidents
CSG June 2019 Presenter: Rohan Sykes, Phoenix Workplace Safety

Safety lapses and real life consequences

Presentation by: Rohan Sykes, Phoenix Workplace Safety

Presentation package now available (members only)

Rohan Sykes was a healthy, active young family man when he suffered an horrific workplace injury that caused severe burns to 35% of his body. He was seriously injured by exposure to radiant heat from molten glass, despite wearing full PPE and following procedures.
He emerged from a long and painful recovery and rehabilitation with a strong passion to raise awareness about new approaches to safety that go beyond the standard thinking. Rohan shared his experiences and discussed his special insights and perspectives on safety at the Central Safety Group lunchtime meeting on Tuesday, 11 June.
He spoke about the real life consequences of a workplace accident and outlined a model for safety and ‘safety psychology’ he believes should be adopted. In Rohan’s view, with the right habits and attitudes to safety, most accidents are preventable.

The presenter:

Rohan Sykes started his career as an apprentice fitter and turner with ALCOA. He immediately showed a passion for workplace safety and safe work practices, becoming an apprentice safety rep. Soon after that he started work as a multi-skilled operator at a glass bottle factory where the serious injury occurred. After his recovery Rohan founded Phoenix Workplace Safety with a mission to encourage industrial workplaces and individuals to completely re-think the way they approach safety. Through his presentations he has had a positive impact on the safety culture of many organisations, including major companies in the mining, defence, packaging and food industries and bodies such as local councils.

 
Preventing
Mental
Injury
CSG May 2019 Presenter: Claire Nivarovich, Director Mental Health Programs, WorkSafe Victoria

Prevention of mental injury at work - where can employers best direct their efforts?

Presentation by: Claire Nivarovich, Director Mental Health Programs, WorkSafe Victoria

Presentation package now available (members only)

Work-related mental injury is the second most common cause of workers' compensation claims in Australia, and accounts for around 13% of workers' compensation claims in Victoria.
What can employers do to prevent mental injury in their workplace, and where can they best direct their efforts?
Claire Nivarovich, Director Mental Health Programs, WorkSafe Victoria, spoke about this topic in a lunchtime presentation on 14 May, 2019.
She outlined common causes of mental injury at work, as well as employers’ obligations under Victorian legislation to manage and control the risk. Information was given on WorkSafe programs supporting prevention of mental injury and promotion of mental health and wellbeing at work. This included the WorkWell Toolkit, launched last year for small and medium businesses, with a version for larger organisations launched in early April 2019.

The presenter:

Claire Nivarovich is the Director of Mental Health Programs in the Health and Safety Business Unit at WorkSafe Victoria. This role involves delivery of programs designed to prevent mental injury and illness and promote mental health in Victorian workplaces. Claire originally trained as a physiotherapist but learned quickly that working 1:1 with patients did not allow her to feel as though she was making a significant contribution to improving the health of the community at a system level. Claire has since worked within government and the insurance sector on initiatives to ensure delivery of good quality health and disability services.

 
Managing
Customer
Behaviour
CSG April 2019 Presenter: Kristen Richardson, Wellbeing and Safety Business Partner Team Leader, ANZ

Staff Safety and Difficult Customer Interactions

Presentation by: Kristen Richardson, Wellbeing and Safety Business Partner Team Leader, ANZ

Presentation package now available (members only)

Many businesses have seen an upsurge in staff impacted by difficult customer interactions that may place them at risk of a physical or psycho-social illness. This has particularly been the case in the banking industry and is varied across customer contact, whether it is face-to-face or telephone interactions.
ANZ Bank has a strategy in place to keep their staff safe from this risk and this was presented by Kristen Richardson, Wellbeing and Safety Business Partner Team Leader, at a lunchtime presentation to Central safety Group on 9 April, 2019.
The strategy looks at all aspects of staff safety – physical, psycho-social and most importantly the leadership culture shift required to enable this strategy to be successful. This strategy was developed using external consultancy expertise and research across other industries.

The presenter:

Kristen Richardson joined ANZ in mid-2014 and has been in her current role providing Business Partnering wellbeing and safety support across ANZ Australia Division for two years. Prior to that, she was Retail Wellbeing and Safety Business Partner at ANZ. She spent over seven years in senior HR roles with infrastructure company Golder Associates after being with Coles Supermarkets for 10 years as National HS Manager. Kristen started her career in nursing before studying OH&S at RMIT and doing further studies in change management.

 
A Hidden
Explosive
Hazard
CSG March 2019 Presenter: Richard Greenwood, RG Chemical Safety

An explosive hazard hidden in plain sight

Presentation by: Richard Greenwood, RG Chemical Safety

Presentation package now available (members only)

Combustible dust can be a hidden chemical hazard in workshops, factories, storage facilities and many other places. Because it’s not classified as a hazardous substance or as dangerous goods, it is often ignored in workplace procedures and risk control. The significance of this was discussed by chemical hazards expert Richard Greenwood in a lunchtime presentation to Central Safety Group on 12 March.
The consequences of not recognising the presence of combustible dust were dramatically demonstrated recently when two workers doing routine maintenance were seriously injured in a workplace explosion in Victoria. The result was an Enforceable Undertaking for the company involved, including preparation of basic workplace training materials and a video for awareness of the hazard. Richard spoke about this case as part of its compliance with WorkSafe’s Enforceable Undertaking.
He explained how fine combustible dusts are likely to form and potentially explode when disturbed in an enclosed space. He also discussed how to detect and manage risks associated with this.

The presenter:

Richard Greenwood has spent over 25 years working in chemical safety training and consulting and has been involved in the development of some key chemical safety regulations. His career includes 15 years as Manager, Compliance and Training with Chemwatch, an international company with its headquarters in Australia. He now has his own business, RG Chemical Safety.

 
OHS Careers -
What's Hot &
What's Not
CSG February 2019 Presenter: Rachel McGregor and Ebonie Martello, Safety People

OHS Careers and Recruitment - what’s hot and what’s not

Presenters:

    Rachel McGregor, Safety People
    Ebonie Martello, Safety People

Presentation package now available (members only)

Key job market trends in safety in Australia were the subject of a presentation at the Central Safety Group’s first meeting for 2019 on 12 February.
OHS recruitment specialists Rachel McGregor and Ebonie Martello of Safety People gave a presentation followed by an extensive Q&A session with the audience.
They spoke about how employment trends are matching the industries experiencing a boom and presented a table of salary trends for various OHS positions in the Melbourne market. They noted that the demand for consultants is increasing and talked about the reasons for this as well as the implications for those seeking OHS roles.
They concluded by discussing what employers are looking for in a safety professional and what candidates are looking for in an employer.

The presenter:

Before joining Safety People, Rachel McGregor worked in WorkCover/Return-to-Work roles.

The presenter:

Before joining Safety People, Ebonie Martello was an OH&S Advisor with John Holland.

 
Construction Safety
during the
Boom
CSG November 2018 Presenter: Greg Splatt

Construction Safety During the Boom

Presentation by: Greg Splatt

Presentation package now available (members only)

Throughout Australia there is unprecedented growth in all areas of construction – commercial, civil and residential. This boom has created issues relating to knowledge, skills and competencies needed at all levels of the construction workforce.
The issue of safety in this climate was discussed by Greg Splatt, a construction safety manager and trainer, in a lunchtime presentation for Central safety Group on 13 November.
Greg said that many people are coming into the industry with the promise of long-term work, long hours and good pay packets. But without the necessary industry experiences and know-how, what risk do they present on job sites? Challenges with safety understanding and experience can also exist at supervisor and manager level.
Greg also spoke extensively about his experiences with the unique OHS challenges during extensive construction rebuilds after major events such as cyclones and bushfires.

The presenter:

Greg Splatt has spent many years as a Safety Manager in the construction industry, and is also a trainer in various OHS courses with the Master Builders Association. He has experience in all areas of construction and is an experienced safety systems auditor and incident investigator. Prior to working in OHS, Greg was a detective in the Victorian Police Force.

 
Fresh Look
at Safety
Inspections
CSG October 2018 Presenter: Dr Ross Donohue, Senior Lecturer, Monash University

A Fresh Look at Safety Inspections

Presentation by: Dr Ross Donohue, Senior Lecturer, Monash University

Presentation package now available (members only)

There has been surprisingly little research done on how inspectors assess health and safety in workplaces. Although the inspectors’ task is grounded in rules and regulations, there are few standardised measures to assist them.
Dr Ross Donohue, our speaker on 9 October, has done ground-breaking work on this. He shared his research findings with us and outlined the 7-item generic OHS metric checklist he developed as a result of this research, in order to create a standardised tool to assist inspectors.
Ross also talked about the need for developing measures and training to assist OHS inspectors to assess psycho-social risk.

The presenter:

Dr Ross Donohue, Senior Lecturer, Monash University. Dr Ross Donohue works in the Faculty of Business and Economics at Monash University as a Senior Lecturer. He is currently working on a program to improve the training, competency assessment and development of safety inspectors. His other work includes developing a competency-based framework and continuing professional development program for OHS regulators.

 
Sit-Stand
Desks
CSG September 2018 Presentation: Professor David Caple, OHS consultant and Adjunct Professor, Centre for Ergonomics & Human Factors, La Trobe University

Sit to Stand Desks – What’s the verdict?

Presentation by: Professor David Caple AM, OHS Consultant and Adjunct Professor, Centre for Ergonomics & Human Factors, La Trobe University, David Caple & Associates

Presentation package now available (members only)

Many organisations have invested in sit-stand desks in response to experts’ claims about the benefits, ranging from reducing the risk of cardiovascular disease and diabetes to solving back pain.
Professor David Caple discussed the latest knowledge on the effectiveness of sit-stand desks and issues surrounding their use on 11 September, 2019 in a lunchtime talk to Central Safety Group.
David recently presented two papers on this topic at the International Ergonomics Association Congress in Florence, Italy in August. He was part of a group of 16 presenters from around the world sharing the latest research relating to sit to stand desks.
There can be confusion about how much to use these desks while working, and whether a certain duration or pattern of standing should be prescribed. David spoke about a range of factors that can affect how successful these desks are in the workplace, including the change management process, job design, employee education and work culture.

The presenter:

Professor David Caple, who has a background as an ergonomist, has been a leading figure in occupational health and safety in Australia for many years. He has advised a wide range of businesses, industry groups and public sector organisations, and worked with Australian and overseas governments on work health and safety strategy. He is an OHS consultant and Adjunct Professor, Centre for Ergonomics & Human Factors, La Trobe University. David was awarded the AM – Member of the Order of Australia – in the 2018 Queens Birthday Honours list. The honour is in recognition of his “significant service to community health through workplace health and safety reforms and ergonomic policy development."

 
Taming
Contractor
Management
CSG August 2018 Presenter: John Naughton

Taming Contractor Management

Presentation by: John Naughton

Presentation package now available (members only)

Contractor management is one of the most challenging areas of safety risk management. Contractor management systems can be onerous and complicated, leaving gaps when it comes to covering business and compliance requirements.
John Naughton and his team tackled this problem and transformed contractor management while he was Director of HSE at a major food company, and he shared his experiences at the August meeting of Central Safety Group.
He described the journey from a manual spreadsheet-based contractor management system to an easy-to-manage, efficient and flexible system embracing modern technology. This change also brought crucial new dimensions and features to the company’s system for managing contractors, and significantly, reduced administrative time and costs.

The presenter:

John Naughton has over 20 years’ experience designing, implementing and managing safety and environmental management systems for large companies. In his recent role as Director of HSE at George Weston Foods, he was responsible for a team of over 50 HSE professionals in Australia, New Zealand and the Asia Pacific region. Prior to that he was National SH&E Manager for the Baking Division of Goodman Fielder.

 
A WorkSafe
Inspector’s
-Eye View
CSG July 2018 Presenter: Les Cameron, WorkSafe Inspector, WorkSafe Victoria

A WorkSafe Inspector’s-eye view

Presentation by: Les Cameron, WorkSafe Inspector, WorkSafe Victoria

Things have been happening at WorkSafe Victoria, including the relocation this year of its head office along with several hundred roles from Melbourne CBD to Geelong.
This and other current changes, projects and priorities at WorkSafe were outlined by seasoned WorkSafe Inspector Les Cameron in a lunchtime presentation on 10 July.
Les shared his experiences of working on the front line and discussed incidents and some new intervention programs now being tested.

The presenter:

Les Cameron has spent over 20 years with WorkSafe as a dangerous goods and general inspector. He has also taught OHS/WHS for 10 years at Victoria University and Kangan Tafe. Before that he was with the Board of Works and Melbourne Water in a range of roles, including deep sewer maintenance and Training and Rescue special operations. He has also worked as an occupational diver. Les started work as a young teenager in the wool and mining industries in the NT, and went on to “railways, skinning rabbits and roofing” before he settled into a career in safety and related areas.

 
The State
of OHS in
Victoria
CSG June 2018 Presenter: Barry Naismith

The State of OHS in Victoria

Presentation by: Barry Naismith

Presentation package now available (members only)

What do the latest data and developments tell us about the current state of OHS in Victoria? Barry Naismith, who has done a keen-eyed independent analysis, shared his conclusions at the Central Safety Group lunch meeting on 12 June.
Barry was a consultant with the Victorian WorkCover Authority (now WorkSafe) for 14 years. Since then he has produced a number of independent reports into the operations and performance of WorkSafe Victoria.
He has just concluded his latest report, based on 2017, and discussed his findings and spell out some trends and predictions that are likely to be of interest to those working in OHS in Victoria.
To quote leading blogger Kevin Jones, “This level of analysis and interpretation is rarely available outside of formal academic research, and Naismith provides the all-important social and political context from which much academic occupational health and safety (OHS) research shies.” Questions, opinions and comments from the audience were welcomed.

The presenter:

Before a career in OHS, Barry Naismith worked as a journalist and editor. He spent more than 14 years with the Victorian WorkCover Authority and then worked independently as an OHS consultant. Recently this led to a position with Uniting Victoria, working on a program to reduce the impact of work harms on the community. Barry has qualifications in science from Melbourne University and media studies from RMIT.

 
Safety
and the
Big Cats
CSG May 2018 Presenter: Jason Hensel, Senior Advisor, Health and Safety, Zoos Victoria

Safety and The Big Cats

Presentation by: ason Hensel, Senior Advisor, Health and Safety, Zoos Victoria

Presentation package now available (members only)

Injuries and fatalities from contact between people and animals are known to be a high risk in zoos worldwide.
At Zoos Victoria a special program for working with dangerous animals is being supported by Jason Hensel, Senior Advisor, Health and Safety, who gave a presentation on this subject to Central Safety Group on 8 May.
Jason discussed how he has drawn on safety programs from a number of industries to develop effective and consistent controls for the safe keeping of all animals likely to endanger human life, known as Category 1 Animals.
Melbourne Zoo has 20 species of animal that fall into this category – ranging from the big cats to gorillas, hippopotamuses and African wild dogs. Jason has been working on risk assessments and safety systems for each of these, taking into account physical, mechanical, animal behaviour and human factors.
This initiative is part of Zoos Victoria’s aim to become a world leader in zoo safety. Zoos around the world put a sharp spotlight on safety following incidents such as a child falling into a gorilla exhibit at Cincinnati Zoo and the death of a keeper at New Zealand’s Hamilton Zoo.

The presenter:

Jason Hensel has been in his present role with Zoos Victoria since 2016. Before that, he worked in safety roles with Veolia Environmental Services and in OHS, process improvement and project management roles with Visy Industries. He began his career as an electrical engineer with Southcorp Packaging, having graduated in this field from RMIT. He also has an Advanced Diploma in HS&E from RMIT.

 
Reducing Manual
Handling
Injuries
CSG April 2018 Presenter: Conor Healy, Manager, Work Health and Safety, Jetstar Australia New Zealand

Reducing Manual Handling Injuries

Presentation by: Conor Healy, Manager, Work Health and Safety, Jetstar Australia New Zealand

Presentation package now available (members only)

Manual handling injuries are some of the most common and costly injuries in the workplace.
An account of how Jetstar Airways reduced these injuries by 40% was shared by Conor Healy, Manager, Work Health and Safety, Jetstar Australia New Zealand in a lunchtime presentation on 10 April.
Baggage handlers, cabin crews and engineering workshop teams all do a lot of manual handling at Jetstar, which now has 7,000 employees and is one of the world’s fastest growing airlines.
Conor developed a multi-pronged program to reduce manual handling injuries and the risk of musculoskeletal disorders for employees working in body stressing environments. In two years he has found that the program has already made a significant difference.
He discussed this program and what the airline is doing to continue to gain improvements in this area.

The presenter:

Conor Healy has been Manager, Work Health and Safety, Jetstar Australia New Zealand for three years. His background includes significant experience in areas ranging from transport with London Underground, defence with BAE Systems to logistics with Toll and working with aerospace organisations. He is a graduate of the University of Westminster in the UK and has attained an MBA in Strategy.

 
ISO 45001
is here -
What Now?
CSG March 2018 Presenter: Kevin Jones, Editor, SafetAtWorkBlog

ISO 45001 is here – what now?

Presentation by: Kevin Jones, Editor, SafetAtWorkBlog

Presentation package now available (members only)

The new international standard for OHS Management Systems – ISO 45001 – has been finalised and was published the day before Kevin’s presentation on 13 March. Kevin Jones has been following the evolution of this new Standard closely and considering its implications for Australia. He provided his perspective on ISO 45001 and how it could fit with your safety management systems.
Many are claiming this Standard is a “game changer”. Kevin believes it’s not, but it is important and it does include support for some of the OHS Principles which are now considered essential for effective safety and health management. He reviewed these features as well as providing a handout that summarised the different sections, comparing the new standard against AS4801 & OHSAS 18001.

The presenter:

Kevin Jones is well known for his award-winning SafetyAtWorkBlog. He has been a consultant, writer and commentator on OHS matters for many years, and recently launched a podcast series of interviews with leading safety experts (safetyoz.podbean.com).

 
Mental
Conditions &
Return to Work
CSG February 2018 Presenter: Frank Imbesi, Managing Director, AMS Consulting

Mental-Psychological Conditions & Return to Work

Presentation by: Frank Imbesi, Managing Director, AMS Consulting

Presentation package now available (members only)

Return to work for people who have suffered workplace psychological injury or illness can be a complicated and challenging process.
The best-practice approach and potential problems when helping employees recovering from mental health issues was discussed by Frank Imbesi, Managing Director of AMS Consulting, an occupational rehabilitation company.
This area is of special interest to Frank, who has been working in in the field of return-to-work planning, management and support for many years. He said that a lot is known about rehabilitation and return to work after physical injury, but far less about how to help people recovering from events or situations in the workplace that led to mental injury.
There has been a recent increase in the reporting and acceptance of mental injury conditions and claims, which has found many employers unsure and unprepared when it comes to dealing with the challenges of rehabilitation and preventing recurrence of the problem. Frank outlined a number of ways to assist employers with these challenges.

The presenter:

Frank Imbesi is Managing Director of AMS Consulting, a multi- award-wining company specialising in health and wellbeing, injury prevention, injury management, return to work consulting and human factors analysis . He began his career as a physiotherapist, working in sports medicine and clinical private practice, before moving to the field of occupational rehabilitation. Frank has consulted and presented to national and large state based employers, Scheme Agents and universities in the areas of occupational rehabilitation and best practice return to work following occupational injury. Frank has been a university lecturer and has presented in the areas of occupational injury management and best practice RTW over many years and on behalf of VWA. He has also presented at numerous conferences. He was on the organising committee for the international forum on disability management in 2014. Frank was a member of the VWA Clinical Panel providing specialist advice in the area of occupational rehabilitation peer review for the duration of the program. Frank was the recipient of the National Outstanding Achievement in RTW Award in 2017. He has also been a judge for the Australian Rehabilitation Providers Association Awards.

 
Working at
Heights
CSG November 2017 Presenter: David Davis, Director, Working at Heights Association of Australia

Working at heights – are the regulations safe?

Presentation by: David Davis, Director, Working at Heights Association of Australia

Falls are a major cause of death and serious injury in Australian workplaces. But are current safety standards and regulations adequate to ensure protection for workers?
This important issue was discussed by David Davis, a member of the Executive Committee of the Australian Working at Heights Association at the November meeting of Central Safety Group. David outlined a number of concerns the Association has about current industry guidelines and standards, as well as areas where there is a need to raise awareness.
This included his own review and critique of AS1657, the main Australian Standard covering fixed platforms, walkways, stairways and ladders, which was revised in 2013. David identified 20 shortfalls, omissions or areas of potential confusion in the revised standard. These were detailed in a report submitted to Standards Australia when the 2013 standard was released. He gave a number of examples where people working in OHS need to be aware that the current revised AS1657 is inadequate.

The presenter:

David Davis became a Director of the Working at Heights Association of Australia in 2016. He is the owner of Hi-Rise Access Pty Ltd, a consulting and engineering company specialising in height safety, fall protection and suspended access. David became interested and involved in the safety industry through a friend who was working in the field. He acquired his current company 12 years ago. Prior to that, he had a successful career in the computer software industry, creating and selling his own company and looking at retirement at the age of 40. His plans changed when he discovered and developed his passion for industrial and workplace safety.

 
OHS in
Victoria
CSG October 2017 Presenter: Graham Dent, OHS Lawyer

OHS in Victoria… where are we going?

Presentation by: Graham Dent, OHS Lawyer

Presentation package now available (members only)

Recent developments in some areas of OHS law in Victoria were discussed by leading OHS lawyer Graham Dent at the October meeting of Central Safety Group.
This included the relevance of the harmonised WHS laws in Victoria, trends in cases, courts and penalties, and the use of Enforceable Undertakings.
Graham gave examples to illustrate these issues and the implications of changes we see going on around us. He also discussed changes that may have quietly slipped past us.

The presenter:

Graham Dent has over 30 years’ experience in the regulatory field, including time as a government prosecutor in OHS, industrial and consumer law matters. He is now in private legal practice representing clients in major regulatory actions for OHS, environmental and other areas. He represents clients and conducts training programs in all jurisdictions. Graham is also the founder of Australia’s largest online OHS forum with 17,000 members, the Work Health Safety Leadership (Australia & International) Group.

 
The
Future
of OHS
CSG September 2017 Presenter: Professor David Caple OM

The Future of OHS

Presentation by: Professor David Caple, OHS Consultant and Adjunct Professor, Centre for Ergonomics & Human Factors, La Trobe University, David Caple & Associates

Presentation package now available (members only)

What will OHS look like in the future? What jobs are likely to be available and skill sets required? Professor David Caple, a close participant and observer in the safety industry for over 40 years, examined these questions in his talk to the Central Safety Group on 12 September. David spoke about how the field of workplace safety has evolved, looking at the most important trends and changes over the years. He discussed what he sees as the latest significant developments in the area and where he sees things heading in the future. This included what OHS practitioners will be expected to know and do and the skills, background and experience they will need in the years ahead.

The presenter:

David Caple, who has a background as an ergonomist, has been a leading figure in occupational health and safety in Australia for many years. He has advised a wide range of businesses, industry groups and public sector organisations and worked with Australian and overseas governments on work health and safety strategy. He is an OHS consultant and Adjunct Professor, Centre for Ergonomics & Human Factors, La Trobe University.

 
Peer
Support
Programs
CSG August 2017 Presenter: Jacqui Bloink, Workplace Wellbeing Program Manager, St Vincent’s Hospital, Melbourne

Peer support programs – tips for success

Presentation by: Jacqui Bloink, Workplace Wellbeing Program Manager, St Vincent’s Hospital, Melbourne

Presentation package now available (members only)

There is growing recognition of the value of workplace peer support programs in helping employees at times of critical work incidents. The experience, learnings and benefits of a well-established peer support program were discussed by Jacqui Bloink, Workplace Wellbeing Program Manager, St Vincent’s Hospital Melbourne at the August meeting of Central Safety Group.
The hospital this year is celebrating the 20th anniversary of its award-winning staff peer support program, marking it as an early supporter of the concept of a team of colleagues helping one another with typical reactions to stressful events.
Jacqui gave a case study of the St Vincent’s program and outlined findings on how it meets the needs of its users, improves wellbeing and provides value for service.
She also discussed the evolution of such peer support programs and how they can stay relevant in the face of today’s workplace incidents and issues.

The presenter:

Jacqui Bloink has been responsible for managing St Vincent’s Hospital Melbourne’s staff-support services, EAP Liaisons and Critical Incident Stress Management/Peer Support since 2000. She has a background in emergency and intensive care nursing, and has held roles in management, clinical education and project organisation, and served on St Vincent’s executive team. Jacqui was awarded the Critical Incident Stress Management Foundation Australia (CISMFA) achievement award in 2009 and the hospital’s peer support program was recognised in the 2016 Victorian Public Health Care Awards and the 2016 WorkSafe awards.

 
Safety
behind
the Scenes
CSG July 2017 Host: Chris Hayes, Senior Manager, Venue Operations - Production, Arts Centre Melbourne

Safety Behind the Scenes at Arts Centre Melbourne

Presentation by: Chris Hayes, Senior Manager, Venue Operations - Production, Arts Centre Melbourne

Presentation package now available (members only)

There are many unique and complex safety challenges in the live performance industry, ranging from high risk work of theatre rigging and powerful electrical lighting, to manual handling of heavy sets and working with children and animals.
Chris talked about their approach to risk management that involves looking after the safety of entertainers, production teams and audiences. Chris believes there is a need for clearer universal standards and codes of practice in the industry and is working to have these established.

The presenter:

There are many unique and complex safety challenges in the live performance industry, ranging from high risk work of theatre rigging and powerful electrical lighting, to manual handling of heavy sets and working with children and animals. Chris talked about their approach to risk management that involves looking after the safety of entertainers, production teams and audiences. Chris believes there is a need for clearer universal standards and codes of practice in the industry and is working to have these established.

 
Safety
in Design
CSG June 2017 Presenter: David Trembearth, Safety Business Partner, Coles

Managing Risk By Incorporating Safety In Design

Presentation by: David Trembearth, Safety Business Partner, Coles

Presentation package now available (members only)

Poorly designed work is unsafe work. Many times simple but important aspects are overlooked in the project planning stage, setting the scene for future problems. This was the message from David Trembearth, Safety Business Partner, People and Product Safety, Coles. When he spoke to the Central Safety Group on 13 June. David gave examples of how safety in design can make a difference, and discussed the key elements of good safety design both from a people management perspective and an organisational perspective.
He also outlined some of the steps in optimising safety when designing and managing a project.

The presenter:

David is a Certified Professional Ergonomist (HFESA) and a Chartered Generalist OHS Professional (SIA) and is Safety Business Partner for Coles providing safety support across all brands nationally. He has a Bachelor of Applied Science degree in Human Movement, and Graduate Diplomas in OHS Management, Ergonomics and Teaching. A key driver in his role at Coles is Safety in Design. He has over 30 years of experience in the provision of health and safety advice, including professional/consulting roles in teaching, clinical massage, safety, ergonomics, injury management, and as a WorkSafe inspector.

 
Leadership
in Safety
Culture
CSG May 2017 Presenter: Wayne Richards, General Manager, Group Health Safety Environment & Quality, Transdev Australasia

The role of leadership in safety culture

Presentation by: Wayne Richards, General Manager, Group Health Safety Environment & Quality, Transdev Australasia

Presentation package now available (members only)

A lot is said about ‘safety leadership’. But what specifically can leaders do to shape an organisation’s safety culture? This was discussed by Wayne Richards, General Manager, Group Health Safety Environment & Quality, Transdev Australasia at a lunchtime presentation to Central Safety Group on 9 May. Wayne talked about what is being done in Transdev. He also drew on his experience in senior safety roles with the MFB and the aviation and environmental services sectors. Transdev is a leading transport provider in Australia and NZ, operating train, bus, coach, ferry and light rail operations in partnership with public authorities and private companies. In Melbourne, this includes operating passenger transport services and school bus services on behalf of Public Transport Victoria.

The presenter:

Wayne commenced his role with Transdev in mid-2016. He was previously Director of Work Health and Safety with the MFB and Executive General Manager of SHEQ with Veolia. He holds a Masters of Business and Technology from the University of NSW as well as technical certificates in electronics. He is also a chartered professional member of the Safety Institute of Australia and Graduate of the Australian Institute of Company Directors.

 
Safety in
the Age of
Automation
CSG April 2017 Presenter: Mark Letman, Safety & Wellbeing Business Lead, Pacific Brands

Safety in the age of automation

Presentation by: Mark Letman, Safety & Wellbeing Business Lead, Pacific Brands

Presentation package now available (members only)

Automation is rapidly affecting everything from the agricultural and manufacturing sectors to the healthcare industry. An insight into what automation can mean for safety procedures and related workplace arrangements was given by Mark Letman of Pacific Brands on 11 April. Pacific Brands, which manufactures and sells products that include Bonds underwear and Sheriden sheets, recently automated some of the key procedures for picking and packing orders in its 43,000 square metre national warehouse in Truganina. Mark’s experience is that the move to automation has had some positive effects on working conditions “The automation’s taken away a lot of the hard slog and legwork in the warehouse, and it’s become a joint activity between employees and the machine,” he says. However, it has also brought challenges in introducing employees to new work practices. This includes safety requirements when working with machines for the first time.

The presenter:

Mark Letman joined Pacific Brands 27 years ago and has worked in logistics, freight management, manufacturing and management roles. He started working in safety 12 years ago, after his interest in the field was stirred by his experience as a member of the site’s emergency response team.

 
Demystifying
Psychosocial
Risk
CSG February 2017 Presenter: Dr Natasha Lazareski, Managing Director, PsyFlex

Demystifying Psychosocial Risk

Presentation by: Dr Natasha Lazareski, Managing Director, PsyFlex

Presentation package now available (members only)

The emphasis on psychosocial risk in the workplace is fairly new in the area of health, safety and wellbeing. Although there has been a huge amount of research on it globally and locally, there is limited understanding on how to assess and manage it.
The subject was discussed by occupational health specialist Dr Natasha Lazareski, who specialises in this area, at Central Safety Group's meeting on Tuesday, 14 February 2017.
She outlined what psychosocial risk is and how to assess it, and provided insight into some of the latest developments in this field.
Taking action can improve the workplace environment and culture by reducing bullying, conflict, complaints, absenteeism, poor teamwork and mental health issues.
Natasha talked about some of the most powerful and effective actions organisations can take to control the impact of work-related stress and improve the mental wellbeing of their employees.

The presenter:

Dr Natasha Lazareski is Managing Director of Psyflex, which provides expertise in workplace mental health and wellbeing. She has been Health and Wellbeing Manager for a number of organisations including National Australia Bank and Ambulance Victoria. She has also worked as a medical officer for personal injury insurance and was National Manager of CGU Workers Compensation Injury Management Services. Through Psyflex Natasha now develops programs for businesses in a range of industries as well as government organisations, schools, and health and emergency services.

 
Winning
Formula for
Return To Work
CSG November 2016 Presenter: Stuart Cross, Occupational Health & Safety Unit Manager, Yarra City Council

Winning Formula For Return To Work

Presentation by: Stuart Cross, Occupational Health & Safety Unit Manager, Yarra City Council

Presentation package now available (members only)

A new approach to injury management helped Yarra City Council achieve a 40% reduction in standard WorkCover claims and a WorkSafe Employer Excellence award in 2015.
Stuart Cross outlined the actions the Council took to reduce workplace injuries and assist injured workers in rehabilitation and return to work. The result in just one year was a 55% reduction in lost time days due to injuries and a 46% reduction in injury occurrence rates. It also translated into a $400,000 saving in Yarra City Council’s annual WorkCover premium.
He also discussed how the Council is maintaining these results and making further improvements to their new OHS model in relation to injury management.

The presenter:

Before joining Yarra City Council in 2009, Stuart worked with CGU in Safety & Risk and Injury Management roles. Prior to that he was with Corporate Health Management. He studied Human Movement and Exercise Rehab at Victoria University and has an advanced diploma in OHS.

 
Safety:
Trade or
Profession?
CSG October 2016 Presenter: Leo Ruschena, Senior Lecturer OHS, RMIT University

Safety: Trade or profession?

Presentation by: Leo Ruschena, Senior Lecturer OHS, RMIT University

Presentation package now available (members only)

It’s both trade and profession, according to Leo Ruschena, Senior Lecturer OHS, RMIT University and Chair, Technical Committee of the Australian OHS Education Accreditation Board.
Leo talked about how safety education and accreditation are going through a process of major reform. This includes developing a uniform system of knowledge, accreditation of universities and certification of individuals. This has led to some confusions and gaps, including problems with the role of TAFE in safety education and certification.
He also discussed the current (controversial) move to ‘professionalise the profession’, which will require safety professionals to have accreditation the same as engineers, doctors and accountants.

The presenter:

Leo Ruschena was previously Director of Human Resources at WorkSafe Victoria and before that held senior roles in human resources and OHS with several utility companies. He has bachelors degrees in chemical engineering and economics from the University of Queensland, a Masters in Occupational Health and Industrial Hygiene from the University of London and a Masters in Industrial and Employee Relations from Monash University.

 
Managing
Fatigue
CSG September 2016 Presenter: Professor David Caple OM

Managing fatigue: getting it right

Presentation by: Professor David Caple, OHS Consultant and Adjunct Professor, Centre for Ergonomics & Human Factors, La Trobe University, David Caple & Associates

Presentation package now available (members only)

Fatigue at work can present significant risks, with fatigue management policies covered in OHS regulations and industrial agreements.
But Professor David Caple questions whether our current arrangements are dealing with it very well.
He discussed shortcomings in this area as well as looking at some less well understood implications of fatigue. He also highlighted the increase in fatigue problems with white collar workers.
David said fatigue has physical, psychological and cognitive effects which can apply in any role in the workplace. This makes it important for OHS professionals to see it not only as a safety hazard but as a wider workplace wellbeing issue.
“We don’t always appreciate the cumulative impact of fatigue, or the poor quality of sleep people are getting today. We’re now in a generation that celebrates extended work hours, lives with round the clock digital activity and sees long daily commutes as normal,” he said.
David talked about increased understanding of the psychological, emotional and cognitive cost this is having on people, as well as the impact on their physical health, and whether awareness of this should lead to changes in the workplace.

The presenter:

David Caple, who has a background as an ergonomist, has been a leading figure in occupational health and safety in Australia for many years. He has advised a wide range of businesses, industry groups and public sector organisations and worked with Australian and overseas governments on work health and safety strategy. He is an OHS consultant and Adjunct Professor, Centre for Ergonomics & Human Factors, La Trobe University.

 
What Safety
Success
Looks Like
CSG August 2016 Presenter: Rocky Armstrong, Group Manager, Health, Safety, Environment and Quality, AusNet Services

What safety success looks like – across industry sectors

Presentation by: Rocky Armstrong, Group Manager, Health, Safety, Environment and Quality, AusNet Services

Presentation package now available (members only)

What are some of the key things successful organisations do to achieve a high performance in health and safety? How would your workplace rate?
This was discussed by Rocky Armstrong, basing his observations on his experience in his current role and previous job as Asia Pacific Head of Safety with Linfox, the international logistics and supply chain company.
At Linfox, Rocky was involved with a wide range of safety programs in companies across different sectors, including BlueScope Steel, Unilever, Tesco, bhp Billiton, ExxonMobil and more.
He talked about lessons and insights this gave him on safety strategy, leadership and culture.
Rocky also provided a scorecard with key elements of success and invited the audience to participate in a self-assessment exercise based on their workplace experience.

The presenter:

He is currently Group Manager, Health, Safety, Environment and Quality with Ausnet Services, the energy delivery service business that owns and operates Victoria's largest network of electricity and gas infrastructure. He previously worked with Linfox, and was Asia Pacific Head of Health and Safety. Linfox has over 20,000 people operating in 10 countries and is exposed to a diverse risk profile. Rocky completed tertiary studies in science, occupational health and safety and management before completing his MBA at Melbourne Business School.

 
Rethinking
Incident
Investigation
CSG July 2016 Presenter: Greg Splatt, National HSE Manager, Johns Lyng Group

Rethinking incident investigation

Presentation by: Greg Splatt, National HSE Manager, Johns Lyng Group

Presentation package now available (members only)

How well do we carry out incident investigations and how useful are they?
This issue was explored by Greg Splatt, a former detective with the Victoria Police Force and experienced risk auditor and safety professional now working in the construction industry.
He believes traditional incident investigation models used by the safety industry often fall short.
He also questions how much value is derived from the results of investigations. This is important as incident investigation is a vital part of improving safety performance.
Greg discussed investigative techniques used by detectives for crime and traffic accidents. While some of the methods used in safety investigations are similar, Greg says the follow up and resolution are often different.

The presenter:

Greg Splatt has spent many years as a Safety Manager in the construction industry, and is also a trainer in various OHS courses with the Master Builders Association. He has experience in all areas of construction and is an experienced safety systems auditor and incident investigator. Prior to working in OHS, Greg was a detective in the Victorian Police Force.

 
Workplace
Aggression
CSG July 2016 Presenter: Tiffany Plummer, Aggression Coordinator, St Vincent’s Hospital, Melbourne

Workplace aggression – prevention and management

Presentation by: Tiffany Plummer, Aggression Coordinator, St Vincent’s Hospital, Melbourne

Presentation package now available (members only)

Workplace aggression, or occupational violence, is an issue today for many organisations that deal with the public.
Tiffany Plummer discussed the problem and strategies to help prevent and manage it at Central Safety Group's meeting on the 14th June, 2016.
She is responsible for programs at St Vincent's to train employees in aggression prevention and management strategies, and investigates critical incidents of aggression.
Tiffany also runs programs to help strengthen the resilience of hospital employees. There is an increasing call for such programs as healthcare workers and other service providers today deal with a decline in civility by the public.
St Vincent’s Hospital has been a pioneer in strategies for dealing with occupational violence for 20 years, and Tiffany’ current role was created in 2010.

The presenter:

In addition to her role as Aggression Coordinator Tiffany is also coordinator of St Vincent's Hospital’s successful Star Program for peer-to-peer support. This program provides employees with trained colleagues to help them deal with stress in the workplace. They are available 24 hours a day to offer one-on-one support to workmates experiencing stressful events, provide information and referrals and facilitate team debriefing sessions e.g. after the death of a patient. Tiffany has been with St Vincent’s Hospital for 27 years, working as an Emergency Care nurse before moving to the OHS department.

 
Safety
and the
Crane Industry
CSG May 2016 Presenter: Brandon Hitch, CEO, Crane Industry Council of Australia-CICA

Safety and the crane industry

Presentation by: Brandon Hitch, CEO, Crane Industry Council of Australia (CICA)

Presentation package now available (members only)

As cranes have grown larger and more complicated so have the safety challenges.
An insight into how the industry works on safety with operators and companies was provided by Brandon Hitch to Central Safety Group on May 10, 2016.
He also provided an interesting insight and overview of how cranes worked, and where the risks lie.
Brandon discussed some prominent crane accidents and their causes, and extensive measures being taken to help prevent such incidents through initiatives such as the mobile crane industry’s Cranesafe program.

The presenter:

Before being appointed CEO of the Crane Industry Council, Brandon was General Manager of the industry’s Cranesafe program, overseeing the technical and day to day operations of the program nationally. Brandon joined CICA four years ago after working as a senior engineer for companies in the USA and Australia. With bachelors and masters degrees in engineering, he is registered as a chartered engineer with Engineers Australia and is a licensed professional engineer in the USA.

 
 

Next Meeting

 

COVID-19
in Victoria -
Union Perspective

CSG July 2021 Zoom meeting - Speaker: Dominic Melling, Lead Organiser, OHS Team, Victorian Trades Hall Council



COVID-19 response in Victoria: A union perspective

Presented by Dominic Melling, Lead Organiser, OHS Team, Victorian Trades Hall Council

Tuesday 13 July 2021, noon

COVID-19 response in Victoria: A union perspective
The COVID-19 crisis brought some major challenges to unions affiliated with the Victorian Trades Hall Council (VTHC), their members and workers. These challenges, along with lessons learned and solutions, will be discussed by Dominic Melling, Lead Organiser of the OHS Team at the VTHC in a zoom presentation at midday on Tuesday, 13 July.
Dominic’s talk will cover essential workers who reported to their usual workplaces throughout the lockdowns as well as people working from home. He will review the structural problems that facilitated the spread of COVID-19 and the Union’s role in advising Health and Safety Representatives and members. Using case studies from high risk industries, he will discuss what happened when OHS structures and procedures failed and what lessons can be learned from these failures.
The presentation will outline VTHC initiatives to support HSRs and workers, and Unions’ lobbying efforts that led to changes in Government policy designed to protect workers and the community and to eliminate the spread of COVID-19.

About the Speaker:

Dominic Melling has been the Lead Organiser of the OHS Team at the Victorian Trades Hall Council since January 2020. In this role he works with affiliated unions in their collective efforts to campaign for safer workplaces and better conditions for workers. Recent examples of campaigns include the introduction of industrial manslaughter as an offence; exposure standards to crystalline silica and the introduction of psychological health regulation.
Dominic also assists WorkSafe Victoria by liaising with relevant VTHC affiliates in relation to health and safety and workers’ compensation matters.
After graduating in law from Monash University, he had extensive experience representing workers in both industrial and health and safety matters. Prior to working at VTHC, Dominic worked with the National Union of Workers as an Industrial Officer, Organiser and Trainer.

Date: Tuesday 13 July 2021
Time: 12:00pm to 1:00pm
How: Online via Zoom.
N.B. A video recording of the session will be available on the website exclusively for financial members.
Cost: Financial members* free. Others $10
[Individual membership fee for 2021: $75]
*If unsure of your membership status, contact This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.
RSVP: COB Monday 12 July, 2021.
The Zoom meeting link will be emailed upon confirmation of payment.
Online using our RSVP form
or phone the secretary T: (03) 9387 9768 Mobile 0417 040 252
or Email: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.
Don’t forget to put every second Tuesday from February to December in your Calendar!

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