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Monday, 30 November 1998
Page: 908


Senator STOTT DESPOJA (5:33 PM) —On one of the issues we were debating before—penalty units—I made an off the cuff reference to a safety and rehabilitation act. I also wanted to draw the committee's attention to the occupational health and safety act which states, in reference to the duty of an employer in relation to third parties, that an employer must take all reasonably practicable steps to ensure that persons at or near a workplace under the employer's control who are not the employer's employees or contractors are not exposed to risk to their health or safety arising from the conduct of an employer's undertaking. The penalty in that case is $100,000.

Even though I mentioned in the debate some of the minimum penalties in relation to death in a workplace, as well as the penalty that would be faced by that corporation or workplace or employer, in the case of the occupational health and safety act it is $100,000 for a government business enterprise if it fails to ensure that third parties are free from risk. I think that is perhaps comparable to some of the penalty units to which we referred in the debate.