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2016-05-27

know your rights

Health and Safety training: know your rights

The CWU continues to receive reports from Health and Safety Representatives (HSRs) that they are not being allowed to attend training courses of their own choice. 

Under the Work Health and Safety Act 2011, HSRs are entitled to attend a course of their own choosing (Section 72 (1) (c) ), provided that it is Comcare approved. Some sections of Telstra management appear to have trouble reading this section of the Act and have been trying to enrol HSRs in courses of Telstra’s choosing, not the HSRs’. 

HSRs facing this problem need to be aware of their rights in this situation. 

  • You have the right to receive training within 3 months of your request ( Section 72 (2) (a)); 
  • If agreement has not been reached about the course you want to attend within those 3 months, you have the right to approach Comcare to resolve the issue (Section 72 (5)). 
  • As an HSR/DHSR you also have the right to “whenever necessary, request the assistance of any person” (Section 68 (2)(g)) –which of course includes the Union. 

The CWU has found that involving Comcare has been quite helpful in resolving such matters. HSRs facing these or any other limitations of their rights under law are urged to contact the CWU at cwu@cwu.org.au or to call Dave Smithwick at the Divisional Office at dsmithwick@cwu.org.au

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