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OHS Laws
CSG September 2011 Presenter: Steve Baltas, Manager, Strategic Policy-National OHS Reform, WorkSafe Victoria

Update On The Harmonisation Of Health And Safety Law

Presentation by: Steve Baltas, Manager, Strategic Policy-National OHS Reform, WorkSafe Victoria

Presentation package now available (members only)

The Model Work Health and Safety Bill is still on schedule to become law in all States, Territories and the Commonwealth by 1 January 2012. Steve Baltas, Manager, Strategic Policy–National OHS Reform for WorkSafe Victoria, gave an update on its progress to Central Safety Group on 9 September 2010.
While the WHS Act is significantly consistent with the Vic OHS Act, there are a number of key changes, which Steve outlined, along with some outstanding issues in the Model Act still to be addressed.
He also discussed the development of national Regulations and Codes of Practice, the drafts of which will be released for public comment. Finally, he provided a timeline for all work to be completed to ensure a commencement date of January 1, 2012. It is an ambitious project.

The presenter:

Steve Baltas has been with WorkSafe Victoria for the last 11 years, working in management roles in the fields of strategic policy and safety reform. At the beginning of 2010 he was appointed one of 4 directors of the National Health and Safety Reform Division to support the Health and Safety Business Unit, which is undergoing extensive restructuring, and to develop and implement a business plan for 2010/11. Most recently he has been involved with leading and directing all the activities of a multi-disciplinary Strategic policy team to support Victoria’s role in the national OHS reform process established by COAG in 2008.

CSG October 2010 Presenter: Russ Porteous, CEO, Maintenance Essentials

Demystifying fire & essential safety measures compliance in Victoria

Presentation by: Russ Porteous, CEO, Maintenance Essentials

Presentation package now available (members only)

All owners and occupiers of buildings and places of public entertainment have extensive obligations under the Building Regulations (Vic) 2006 in relation to essential safety measures At his presentation to Central Safety Group on 12 October 2010, Russ Porteous, CEO of Maintenance Essentials, provided a guide to navigating these obligations.
He gave information both for the preparation of an annual essential safety measures report and for building owners to satisfy themselves that essential safety measures are being maintained properly. This included a 9-point checklist that he said would help building owners & agents sleep at night.

The presenter:

Over the last 20 Years, Russ Porteous has worked with the ‘big guns’ in the fire protection industry, multinationals such as Wormald and Tyco, honing his skills in fire safety, building design, sales, communication, marketing and technology. In 2001, Russ seized an opportunity to start a new venture, Maintenance Essentials, and bring together a team of competent professionals to this fire protection consultancy. With a head office in Melbourne, Maintenance Essentials provides strategic fire protection services to commercial, government, residential, healthcare and other properties throughout Victoria.

Health Hazards
of Sedentary
CSG September 2010 Presenter: Associate Professor David Dunstan, Head - Physical Activity, Baker IDI Heart & Diabetes Institute

Health Hazards of Sedentary Behaviour

Presentation by: Associate Professor David Dunstan, Head - Physical Activity, Baker IDI Heart and Diabetes Institute

Presentation package now available (members only)

The public health recommendation that people spend at least 30 minutes a day in moderate to vigorous exercise was released in 1996. This was against a social background of a high level of daily physical activity compared to work today. The health consequences of this decline in activity were discussed by Associate Professor David Dunstan from the Baker IDI Heart & Diabetes Institute at Central Safety Group's meeting on 14 September 2010.
David cited a number of recent studies, which show that the magnitude of chronic diseases and poor health among working Australians, together with emerging evidence that sitting time increases risk, highlight the need for increased focus and resources to understand better the potential hazards of prolonged sitting in the workplace. David also gave some recommendations for incorporating more movement into one's daily working life.

The presenter:

Professor David Dunstan is Head of the Physical Activity Laboratory at the Baker Heart and Diabetes Institute in Melbourne. He is also Adjunct Professor at the ECU Health and Wellness Institute, Edith Cowan University and a Public Health Research Fellow with the Victorian Health Promotion Foundation (VicHealth). Prior to this he spent 5 years at the International Diabetes Institute, where he began as Director of Physical Activity Programs and Research, before becoming a Research Fellow. In 2007, he won the Young Tall Poppy Science Award (Victoria) from the Australian Institute of Policy and Science, which recognises the achievements of Australia's outstanding young scientific researchers

CSG August 2010 Presenter: Kevin Jones, Author,

Communicating safety through modern technology

Presentation by: Kevin Jones, Author,

Presentation package now available (members only)

The advent of the internet and social media means that there is now a myriad way to communicate to the world, whether for good or ill. For safety professionals, it offers a whole new way to circulate worthwhile safety messages. Kevin Jones, author & blogger at guided us through this new landscape at Central Safety Group's meeting 10 August 2010.
Kevin analysed a number of platforms and gave tips on how to ensure your safety messages are noticed, as well as how to identify credible websites and blogs. Kevin’s own blog has been operating for 2.5 years and attracts up to 18,000 readers a month. He noted that social media can never diminish the advantages of the type of face-to-face meeting offered by Central Safety Group.

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, as well as a podcast series of interviews with leading safety experts at

CSG July 2010 Presenter: Professor David Caple,  OHS Consultant and Adjunct Professor, Centre for Ergonomics & Human Factors, La Trobe University, David Caple & Associates

Occupational violence – what is happening in the workplaces that interface with the public?

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)

Occupational violence is a major OHS risk in a number of occupations where staff interfaces with the public. These include corrective services, hospitals, banks and disability services. At Central Safety Group's meeting on 13 July 2010, Professor David Caple discussed this growing problem and the circumstances in which it can occur.
He also spoke in detail about interventions, primarily in relation to workplace design. To illustrate this, he shared a range of such interventions from a project he undertook with the Department of Justice in their Justice Service Centres. Finally, he outlined some strategies to support staff should a violent incident occur.

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.


Next Meeting


Safety Risks -
Human Factors

CSG May 2021 Zoom meeting - Speaker: David Trembearth, Safety Business Partner, Coles

Safety risks and understanding human factors

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

Tuesday 8 June 2021, noon

Safety risks and understanding human factors
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, will be the subject of a zoom talk by Dr Kate Branford at midday on 8 June.
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 will talk 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.
She says the rail industry attracted her due to its collaborative approach to safety and the many opportunities for improvement. She will give examples of these in her talk.

About the Speaker:

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.

Date: Tuesday 8 June 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 7 June, 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.
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