Confirmation of significant job losses at WorkSafe means workplaces across New Zealand will be less safe in coming years, the PSA warned today.
The final decisions on WorkSafe’s restructure proposal announced last month confirms 113 roles being disestablished across the organisation which is responsible for regulating workplace health and safety.
“This is a sad day for those who have lost their jobs and disappointing for all workers who deserve to go to work and come home to their whānau safe and well,” said Duane Leo, National Secretary for the Public Service Association Te Pūkenga Here Tikanga Mahi.
“This restructure has been rushed and is out of step with the direction we should be heading with health and safety. Workers and businesses need a well-resourced WorkSafe, not one that is being deprived of resources to do its job.
“We have a poor health and safety record in this country already with a fatality rate double that of Australia – on average one or two workers a week dies at work. Another 15-18 die from illnesses caused by their work.
“The PSA will not stand by while this situation persists and will continue to advocate to WorkSafe and to the incoming government to properly resource this vital organisation so it can be effective and save lives.
“This includes enough inspectors but also people to do WorkSafe’s other functions such as developing guidance, information and education to help businesses keep people safe and research and intelligence to make sure WorkSafe targets the biggest sources of harm.
“But today our hearts go out to all those WorkSafe workers who are facing a challenging time,” said Duane Leo.