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History of compliance monitoring and enforcement

Implementing effective strategies for work health and safety (WHS) regulation in a rapidly changing world of work is an ongoing challenge for regulators in Australia and internationally. Ensuring that regulatory practice is evidence-based, and aligned to legislative requirements, is essential to ensure that workers and others have the highest levels of protection for their health and safety.

In the past, focus on managing obvious hazards and risks, in relatively simple work environments, was successful in achieving substantial reductions in traumatic injuries and fatalities. As work and work environments became more complex, this focus has proven to be less effective for managing all of the risks and the types of harm that workers and others are now exposed to.

In this modern world of work, Workplace Health and Safety Queensland (WHSQ) carries out a broad range of regulatory activities which result in substantial improvements to WHS management in Queensland workplaces and substantially reduce the risk of work-related fatalities, injuries and illnesses occurring.

WHSQ takes a regulatory approach which is designed to ensure two main aims:

  • that obvious risks to the health and safety of workers and others are being managed and that any breaches with legislative requirements are quickly addressed; and,
  • that the businesses and other organisations are fulfilling their duties to ensure WHS by implementing systematic WHS management.

Strategies to ensure compliance: Priority industries focus over the last 10 years (PDF, 1874.68 KB) outlines the rationale behind the general strategies taken by WHSQ in the ten years prior to 2017, including the specific focus on identified priority industries in Queensland.

Last updated
20 December 2018

Codes of Practice are now an enforceable standard to manage hazards and risks

A Work Health and Safety inspector may refer to an approved code of practice when issuing an improvement or prohibition notice.

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Updated work safety codes of practice enforceable from 1 July 2018

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