Health and Safety Legislation: update

December 08 2015

The Health and Safety at Work Act was passed on 27 August 2015 and will come into force on 4 April 2016. The Act is designed to provide a balanced framework to secure the health and safety in New Zealand workplaces. Key aspects of this new legislation include:

  • Every Person Conducting a Business or Undertaking (PCBU) has a duty to do what they/it can within its influence and control to ensure the health and safety of staff and people affected by its work.
  • A new due diligence duty is created for officers to take reasonable steps to ensure that the PCBU is meeting its health and safety obligations
  • Obligations are also on staff to take reasonable care and follow reasonable instruction, and
  • Every PCBU is to have effective staff participation practices and to engage with its staff.

The Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment and WorkSafe NZ are currently developing regulations and guidance material to help PCBUs meet their duties under the new law.

We shall have more comprehensive guidelines later in the year.

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