IR and OHS guides

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IR and OHS guides

The Fair Work Ombudsman is developing a best practice guide specifically aimed at helping small business cope with the new Fair Work IR system. Meanwhile, the Federal Safety Commissioner has released a ‘one-stop-shop’ website which details how businesses can apply for accreditation to the Australian Government Building and Construction OHS Accreditation Scheme.

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The Fair Work Ombudsman is developing a best practice guide specifically aimed at helping small business cope with the new Fair Work IR system. Meanwhile, the Federal Safety Commissioner has released a ‘one-stop-shop’ website which details how businesses can apply for accreditation to the Australian Government Building and Construction OHS Accreditation Scheme.
 
New FWA guide for small business
 
The Fair Work Ombudsman is developing a best practice guide specifically aimed at helping small business cope with the new Fair Work IR system.
 
The guide — Preparing Small Business for the Fair Work Act — is currently being circulated to key stakeholders for comment.
 
Fair Work Ombudsman Nicholas Wilson said guide aims to assist small- to medium-sized Australian businesses with their rights and obligations under the new Act.
 
Operational changes
 
The Fair Work Act 2009 requires businesses, particularly small businesses, to make a number of operational changes.
 
From 1 July, small business needs to comply with new unfair and unlawful dismissal laws, agreement making provisions, transfer of business rules and workplace rights actions.
 
Wilson said the Best Practice Guide will explain the new safety net of minimum employment conditions, about bargaining in good faith at the enterprise level, new obligations to keep records and provide pay slips, the new unfair dismissal laws and new protections for employees and obligations of employers.
 
It also sets out the functions of Fair Work Australia and the Fair Work Ombudsman.
 
Rights and rules
 
Wilson said the new laws describe the rights and rules people have at work.
 
He said the changes affect around 85% of Australian workplaces covered by national legislation, including all businesses in Victoria and the territories. Many of these workplaces employ fewer than 25 employees.
 
Some of these rights and rules are about:
  • what employees should get paid
  • leave entitlements and work conditions
  • records employers need to keep
  • how employees and employers can get help if they have a problem at work
  • not discriminating on the basis of race, sex, sexual preference, age, physical or mental disability, marital status, family or carer responsibilities, pregnancy, religion, political opinion, national extraction or social origin.
 
Websites — Fair Work
 
Refer to a previous article Fair Work Australia websites launched.
 
 
New FSC ‘one-stop-shop’ accreditation website
 
Meanwhile, the Federal Safety Commissioner has released a ‘one-stop-shop’ website that details how businesses can apply for accreditation to the Australian Government Building and Construction OHS Accreditation Scheme.
 
Applicants can become accredited or reaccredited via an online submission or by downloading an application form that can be posted to the Office of the Federal Safety Commissioner.
 
Other tools available on the site include:
  • an Application and Evidence Checklist (this helps ensure all steps in the accreditation process including providing sufficient documentary evidence have been completed)
  • a FSC Online User Guide with step-by-step instructions to help applicants through the online process
  • ‘Information for Applicants’ provides a summary three-page overview on the desktop assessment and accreditation audit process
  • examples of acceptable documentary evidence are also incorporated into the blank application form and the User Guide for additional guidance.
 
Technical support is also available through the FSC Assist Line on 1800 652 500.
 
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