Prime Minister Julia Gillard has been joined by business groups in criticising the NSW Premier’s decision to step away from a proposed national (occupational health and safety) OHS framework
Gillard has claimed she will hold the NSW Government accountable over its decision to back out of the plans, after Premier Kristina Keneally demanded the state retains some current features of its OHS laws.
Gillard told reporters: “A deal is a deal and the Federal Government requires this deal to be honoured.”
"I am currently taking advice from my government about what options are available to ensure the NSW Government honours this deal."
"I'm not going to rule any options in or out at this stage, obviously this is a problem with NSW."
The deal that Gillard is seeking agreement on would see new national OHS laws come into force from January 2012.
Last week Ai Group chief executive Heather Ridout slammed Keneally’s announcement, claiming that the move was “extremely retrograde” and “out of step with the community’s interests”.
Peter Anderson, chief executive of the Australian Chamber of Commerce and Industry (ACCI) supported the Prime Minister’s response to the NSW Government’s announcement that it will withdraw from national workplace health and safety legislation.
“The Prime Minister was spot on in her speedy condemnation of the NSW Government’s decision to back away from a signed agreement to deliver harmonised national workplace laws and safer workplaces.”
“Employers and small businesses have more to worry about with the NSW OHS laws than the unions combined.”