Occupational Health and Safety Governance - Procedures

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1. Purpose and Objectives

These procedures support the University's OHS Policy (PPL 2.10.03) and enact the University's OHS governance framework.

2. Definitions, Terms, Acronyms

Act - Work Health and Safety Act 2011

Faculty/Institute OHS Committee – includes Faculty, Institute, Division and Central Support Services OHS Committees

IBC - The University of Queensland Institutional Biosafety Committee

OHS - Occupational health and safety

OHS Division - Occupational Health and Safety Division

The structures - OHS Governance structures

VCRCC - The Vice-Chancellor’s Risk and Compliance Committee

3. Procedures Scope/Coverage

These procedures apply to all University staff and students.

4. Procedures Statement

The University assures its OHS legislative compliance and management through its OHS governance structures.

The OHS governance structures and their procedures are aligned with the University’s governance arrangements (PPL Section 1. University Organisation and Governance) and must therefore be integrated with the Faculty, Institute and Divisional operations.

5. Structures and their Relationships

The structures and their relationships are shown below.

6. Structures and Procedures

6.1 Faculty/Institute Occupational Health and Safety Committees

The Faculty/Institute Occupational Health and Safety Committees (PPL 2.10.01) support the University's Occupational Health and Safety Policy (PPL 2.10.03) by promoting and facilitating co-operation between staff, students and management in the development and implementation of OHS policy, procedures, guidelines and programs at the University.  These committees maintain UQ's obligations for formal consultation according to the Act.

The Faculty/Institute Health and Safety Committee Chairpersons may refer significant and enterprise-level issues to the Director OHS Division for consideration and may request that Director OHS Division reports on matters to the Vice-Chancellor’s Risk and Compliance Committee.

The Faculty/Institute OHS Committees are responsible for ensuring circulation of meeting minutes to all staff within their area of coverage. The Committees must also provide meeting minutes to the OHS Division.

6.2 Occupational Health and Safety Division

The function of the Occupational Health and Safety Division is to promote the highest practicable standard of occupational health, safety and wellness within The University of Queensland, support a positive OHS culture and facilitate compliance with legislation and national standards.

The OHS Division has a key advisory and facilitative role for the Faculty Health and Safety Committees. The Director OHS Division may also identify University-wide OHS trends, themes and issues from the collective Faculty Health and Safety Committee minutes and progress relevant OHS initiatives.

In response to requests from Faculty Health and Safety Committee Chairpersons, the Director OHS Division assists and provides advice on the resolution of complex, contentious and enterprise-level OHS matters.

The Director OHS Division may report on such matters to the VC’s Risk and Compliance Committee with a request for consideration and direction.

Additionally, the Director OHS Division may also refer matters to the Faculty Health and Safety Committee Chairpersons as appropriate.

The Director OHS Division reviews the OHS Committee meeting minutes and participates in OHS Committee meetings as appropriate. An OHS Division Advisor is allocated for participation in each of the Faculty Health and Safety Committee meetings.

6.3 VC’s Risk and Compliance Committee

The VCRCC provides advice and assurance to the Vice-Chancellor and Senate Risk Committee on the effectiveness of the University’s risk and compliance frameworks and the management of risk and compliance in respect to all activities of UQ.

The VCRCC provides senior management oversight of University risk, compliance, internal audit, investigations and occupational health and safety. It also has oversight of the Institutional Biosafety Committee and its sub-committees.

The committee meets up to five times per year (no less than three) and receives reports on Occupational Health and Safety and UQ Institution Biosafety.

The Director, Occupational Health and Safety, and the Chair Institutional Biosafety Committee are both members of the VCRCC

With respect to Occupational Health and Safety, and Biosafety, the committee is responsible for ensuring:

  • Effective health and safety policy and procedures are in place to identify and manage hazards in accordance with legislative requirements;
  • The UQ Institutional Biosafety Committee operates in accordance with its Terms of Reference and relevant legislation;
  • Ongoing monitoring of management responses to recommendations from reporting functions including OH&S;
  • The review of identified trends and emerging issues in significant risk exposures and compliance concerns, including appropriate communication and consultation on these issues across UQ.

6.4 The Institutional Biosafety Committee

The IBC is a legislative governance committee and oversees the assessment of all University proposals for dealings with Genetically Modified Material.

The Chairperson of the IBC reports directly to the Vice-Chancellor on IBC matters. The Chairperson also reports on IBC business outcomes to the VCRCC. There is a shared information flow between the Director OHS Division and Chair, IBC.

The Director OHS Division is also Deputy Chairperson for the IBC and the OHS Division has an advisory and secretarial role for the Committee.

Director, Health, Safety and Wellness Mr Jim Carmichael
Director, Health, Safety and Wellness Mr Jim Carmichael