All health and safety representatives (HSRs) must now take an initial five-day training course within three months of their election to the role.
The decision to change the requirement to three months from six comes after consultation with worker representatives, employer groups and registered training organisations in the second half of 2018. In addition, all HSRs must undertake refresher training (one-day course) at least every three years.
If a training course is not reasonably available, it must be taken as soon as practicable. This might include geographic remoteness meaning local training is realistically not available within the three-month period.
It is important to remember that unless, and until, an elected HSR has completed the approved training, they do not have the power to issue provisional improvement notices. HSRs have the right to request the business owner approves their time off and pays the course costs and reasonable expenses associated with the training.
More information on health and safety representative requirements is at worksafe.qld.gov.au.