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Queensland's new work health and safety laws

Souce: DEIR Qld

In 2008, Workplace Relations Ministers from around Australia agreed to nationally harmonise work health and safety (WHS) laws. Each State and Territory will commence their work health and safety laws, on 1 January 2012.

Queensland's new legislation

On 26 May 2011 Queensland Parliament became the first to pass the Work Health and Safety Act 2011 (the WHS Act 2011). The WHS Act 2011 reflects the national model WHS Act with minor (but necessary) changes which enable it to operate within the Queensland jurisdiction.

As the national model Act did not include recreational diving, a new Safety in Recreational Water Activities Act 2011 (the SRWA Act) was also passed by the Queensland Parliament on 26 May 2011. Diving is a significant industry in Queensland and the SRWA Act ensures that the strict safety standards in Queensland's diving and snorkelling industries are maintained.

These Acts will be enacted on 1 January 2012.

Understanding the Work Health and Safety Act 2011

These pages contain comparison tables as well as a more detailed analysis of the differences:

For more information and for ongoing timeframes, visit Safe Work Australia (non Queensland Government link).

Previous information

Public comment period (Dec 2010 - April 2011)
The public comment period for the model Work Health and Safety Regulations closed on 4 April 2011. Further information can be found at Safe Work Australia website (non Queensland Government link).

The public comment period provided an opportunity for individuals and organisations to participate in the development of the model Work Health and Safety Regulations and priority model Codes of Practice.

Queensland submission to the national review
In 2008, the Queensland Government made a submission to the national review of occupational health and safety (OHS) laws.

Submission to the National OHS review (PDF, 224 kB)