A new Bill brings the maximum penalty to 20,000 penalty units for body corporates found to have behaved recklessly and endanger or may endanger people in a workplace.

The Treasury and Finance Legislation Amendment Bill 2016 (Treasury and Finance Bill) increases the maximum penalty from 9000 penalty units (more than $1 million) to 20,000 units (more than $3 million) for breaching section 32 of the Victorian Occupational Health and Safety Act 2004.

“The offence of reckless endangerment requires a far greater degree of culpability than an offence against section 21, which requires an employer to provide and maintain a working environment that is safe and without risks to the health of their employees,” the Bill’s explanatory statement says.

“To satisfy this duty, an employer is required to eliminate risks to health and safety, and if it is not reasonably practicable to eliminate those risks, to reduce the risks to health and safety so far as is reasonably practicable.”

TCA Partners have recently assisted a number of our clients review their Risk Register’s to verify that they are implementing the most appropriate controls for identified hazards to ensure that they are meeting their obligations to OHS.