SafeWork NSW Awards
The SafeWork NSW Awards in 2020 recognise excellence and innovation in work health and safety response to COVID-19 across a broad range of industries.
The 2020 SafeWork NSW Awards have been announced!
Congratulations to the 2020 Award recipients as well as our highly commended organisations across the two categories.
Category 1: Outstanding work health and safety response to the changed working environment due to COVID-19
This category recognises excellence with outstanding awards, and also acknowledges the efforts and achievements of finalists with highly commended awards.
Moama on Murray Resort (Regional)
Moama on Murray Resort, situated along the Murray River, provides a wide variety of self-contained accommodation options and function facilities on the NSW-Victorian border. Moama on Murray Resort was recognised for their innovative, COVID-19 safe approach in maximising communications with their customers and staff electronically part of their comprehensive plan and thorough industry consultation.
Shire Eye and Retina Specialists Pty Ltd (Metro)
Shire Eye and Retina Specialists is a small, independent ophthalmology clinic in metropolitan Sydney providing medical and surgical eye care for patients. Shire Eye and Retina Specialists was recognised for their effective early risk assessment of COVID-19 measures facing their business and their industry. This was demonstrated through simple and cost-effective tailored solutions that have since been implemented by other eye specialists within Australia and internationally. Additionally, their commitment to the Work Health and Safety of their staff and clients and COVID-19 compliance was demonstrated through broad consultation within all areas of the business.
SafeWork NSW highly commends these businesses:
Black Bear Café
Kellyville Soccer Club Inc.
Vanguard Wireless Pty Ltd
Ben Furney Flour Mills (Regional)
Ben Furney Flour Mills is a specialty flour and milling business located in Dubbo, Central Western NSW. Ben Furney Flour Mills was recognised for their extensive COVID-19 safety plan. The plan, developed with extensive consultation conducted in various ways, online and direct, demonstrated a commitment to physical distancing with changes in the floor plan of the business, provision of additional amenities for staff and practical processes for external suppliers entering the premises.
SEE Civil Pty Ltd (Regional)
SEE Civil is a family owned civil construction company from Chinderah. The company, operating over 30 years in northern New South Wales and southern Queensland, delivers construction and engineering services for major infrastructure and urban development projects. SEE Civil was recognised for their above and beyond approach with a detailed COVID-19 safety plan focussing on educating staff on compliance, complimented with strong, frequent communications from direct Tool Box Talks to monthly bulletins. SEE Civil were endorsed for improving the work, health and safety of their staff, as well as workplace culture.
Guide Dogs NSW/ACT (Metro)
Guide Dogs NSW/ACT is the leading provider of Guide Dogs and orientation and mobility services that enable people with low vision or blindness to get around their communities safely and independently. Guide Dogs NSW/ACT were recognised for their rapid response and changes in the workplace through fast tracking initiatives that support a COVID Safe environment. Their proactive response and strong leadership was demonstrated with high employee engagement and satisfaction with communication and support available.
SafeWork NSW highly commends these businesses:
Tweed Health for Everyone Super Clinic
Action Insurance Brokers
Wenty Leagues Club
TAFE NSW is a provider of high-quality vocational education and training in Australia with a workforce of over 17,000 people. More than 450,000 students enrol into nationally recognised courses and training each year. This large business was recognised for their outstanding stakeholder consultation and communications with various industries, peak bodies, staff and students. TAFE NSW implemented a cultural change towards health and safety through review of current procedures and a flexible approach to the evolving challenges the COVID-19 restrictions presented. They showed their adaptability and innovation by developing a variety of resources for staff and students to support and assist their work and study in a COVID Safe way.
SafeWork NSW highly commends:
NSW Police Force
Category 2: Outstanding work health and safety support to members in the changed working environment due to COVID-19
This category recognises excellence in unions and industry associations with outstanding awards, and also acknowledges the efforts and achievements with highly commended awards.
Housing Industry Association Ltd
Housing Industry Association is a membership association providing services and support for the residential building industry. Members have access to professional services including planning, legal, technical and safety experts to strengthen knowledge of state building laws and safety requirements. Housing Industry Associated was recognised for their widespread communications approach, ensuring their members were kept informed as changes in industry were announced via a dedicated COVID-19 website. The ‘Making Space on Site’ program demonstrated their commitment to physical distancing and ongoing support of members and contractor wellbeing, offering additional support services.
New South Wales Nurses and Midwives’ Association
The New South Wales Nurses and Midwives’ Association (NSWNMA) is the registered union for all nurses and midwives employed in NSW in the public, private, aged care and disability sectors. They represent and provide for the professional, educational and industrial welfare of nurses and midwives. NSWNMA was recognised for their exceptional support services and programs to their members, who have been at the forefront of the pandemic this year, focusing on prevention and a safe recovery in returning to work. NSWNMA have demonstrated strong leadership through communications, community consultation and widespread support collaborating with other unions and industry organisations.
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- The categories for the 2020 SafeWork NSW Awards are:
- ‘Outstanding work health and safety response to the changed working environment due to COVID-19.’
- Small business
- Large business – non-government
- Large business - government
- ‘Outstanding work health and safety support to members in the changed working environment due to COVID-19.’
- Unions and industry associations
- ‘Outstanding work health and safety response to the changed working environment due to COVID-19.’
- Applicants will be selected for “recognition of outstanding response,” “high commendation” or as a “winner” (hereinafter referred to as “recognition”).
- Award category 1. Up to four businesses (two regional and two metropolitan) will be selected in subcategory a (small business). Up to four businesses (two regional and two metropolitan) will be selected in subcategory b (large business – non-government). Up to two businesses will be selected in subcategory c (large business – government).
- Award category 2. Up to two unions or industry associations will be selected.
- ‘Small business’ is defined as having less than 20 full time employees or equivalent. ‘Large business’ is defined as having 20 or more full time employees or equivalent.
- Selected businesses for 2020 SafeWork Awards described in Category 1a and 1b (small business and large business – non government) will be eligible to apply for a safety rebate/financial support to the value of $3,000 AUD (additional Terms and conditions apply). This will not be issued for subcategory 1c (large business – government) and category 2 (unions and industry associations).
- The eligibility period for activities described in the application is from 12 March 2020 to 9 August 2020.
- This document, the instructions on how to nominate for recognition, the official entry form (all available at www.safework.nsw.gov.au/advice-and-resources/campaigns/safework-awards) and any other details about the 2020 SafeWork NSW Awards contained within promotional material all form part of the terms and conditions of entry. The terms and conditions of entry apply to all entrants in all categories for the 2020 SafeWork NSW Awards.
- The 2020 SafeWork NSW Awards will be administered by SafeWork NSW.
- Entry for the 2020 SafeWork NSW Awards is open to individuals, associations, partnerships, companies, not for profit and other organisations operating and/or based within New South Wales. However, SafeWork NSW reserves the right to either allow or disallow any entrant for any reason at its complete discretion.
- Nominations may include a plan, policy, program or project of an organisation described in clause 10.
- Entries for the 2020 SafeWork NSW Awards will open in July 2020.
- Entries must be received by midnight 12pm on Sunday 9 August 2020. Submissions received after closing time may be accepted. SafeWork NSW has sole discretion to accept late applications.
- The online application process (available at www.safework.nsw.gov.au/advice-and-resources/campaigns/safework-awards) must be completed for each entry.
- By submitting an entry, entrants shall be taken to have acknowledged and accepted these terms and conditions and to have agreed to be bound by them.
- Entries dealing with scientific, medical or technical achievements should be accompanied by a summary in plain English or ‘lay’ terms.
- Sponsors and those representing an organisation on a judging panel are ineligible to enter the 2020 SafeWork NSW Awards.
- Judges will have complete discretion in assessing entries, applying the judging criteria, conditions of entry and determining the 2020 SafeWork Awards outcome. The judges reserve the right, acting in their sole discretion, to move entries into an alternate category or sub-category other than that entered if it is deemed more appropriate. Entrants will be advised if this occurs.
- The decision of the judges is final, and no correspondence will be entered into.
- The assessment conduct and results of the 2020 SafeWork Awards will not create any legal obligations between entrants and SafeWork NSW, the Crown in right of New South Wales, Safe Work Australia or the Commonwealth.
- 2020 SafeWork Awards judging panels reserve the right not to allocate” recognition” in a particular category or sub-category where, in their opinion, there are no entries of sufficient merit.
- In the event an entrant that is judged to receive “recognition” is found to have failed to satisfy or abide by the terms and conditions of the 2020 SafeWork Awards, that entrant shall not be entitled to the relevant “recognition” and SafeWork NSW may, at its absolute discretion, give “recognition” to another entrant or choose not to make the “recognition” at all.
- Persons, sole traders or organisations submitting an entry to the 2020 SafeWork Awards must have all insurance/levies required by law, or otherwise appropriate, for the conduct of their day to day activities (eg workers’ compensation).
- No responsibility is taken for any loss of, or damage to, entries.
- Entries and supporting material will not be returned to entrants.
- Each entrant warrants that its entry, including any designs and/or inventions, and any intellectual property rights arising in connection with that entry vest in the entrant and that the entry does not interfere with any third-party rights.
- Receiving a recognition or commendation for a 2020 SafeWork Award does not signify endorsement of a particular product or a particular health and safety practice by SafeWork NSW or Safe Work Australia. An entrant which is granted “recognition” may freely disclose or publicise the grant of the “recognition,” but must not represent, directly or indirectly, that SafeWork NSW has endorsed the entrant's product, method or service, or the entrant's work health and safety performance.
- SafeWork NSW reserves the right to decline to accept, or to disqualify, an entry at its absolute discretion, including but not limited to situations in which the entrant, or a related person or organisation, has breached or is under investigation for possible breaches of work health and safety laws (whether or not a prosecution is pending), or where the acceptance of the entry may otherwise be detrimental to the objectives of the 2020 SafeWork Awards scheme.
- All entrants agree to allow officers of SafeWork NSW to enter and inspect premises that are the subject of, or related to, for the purposes of verifying the entry. If inspection for the purposes of entry verification cannot be conducted for whatever reason, SafeWork NSW reserves the right to disqualify an entry at its absolute discretion.
- SafeWork NSW will ensure that there is no disclosure to any third party of any information provided by an entrant and marked ‘confidential’, except with the prior consent of that entrant or where such a disclosure is authorised or required by law.
- By entering the 2020 SafeWork Awards, each entrant warrants that all information in its entry is true, accurate and complete. Entrants may be requested to provide further evidence to substantiate their entries and, if so requested, such evidence must be provided within the stipulated timeframe.
- All entrants authorise, subject to receipt of prior written notification, SafeWork NSW to use the information contained in entries (other than confidential information) for any purposes it sees fit including, but not necessarily limited to, promotional purposes.
- Without limiting the generality of clause 32, and subject to proper acknowledgement being given to the relevant entrant, all entrants authorise SafeWork NSW to publish details of their entry, including (but not limited to) contact names, phone numbers and photos. SafeWork NSW will not use the personal information of entrants for any other purpose without prior consent of the entrant, or unless authorised or required to do so by law.
- Entrants acknowledge that they may be required for presentations, media interviews and media production in respect of their entry and agree to take all reasonable steps to make themselves available for, and actively participate in, such presentations, media interviews or media production.
- All entrants authorise SafeWork NSW to recommend that the product, method or service comprising their entry be adopted for use by any other individual or organisation.
- SafeWork NSW, the Crown in right of New South Wales, Safe Work Australia, the Commonwealth and the officers, employees and agents of all the preceding do not accept any liability, however arising, including liability for negligence, for any accident, loss, injury or damage arising at any time out of or in connection with the 2020 SafeWork Awards except for any liability that cannot, by law, be excluded.
- Entrants who breach any of these "conditions of entry" are subject to disqualification.
- All businesses and organisations must comply with NSW legislation or the Australian State or Territory equivalent to:
- Work Health and Safety Act 2011 and associated Regulations.
- Workers Compensation Act 1987 and associated Regulations.
- Workplace Injury Management and Workers Compensation Act 1998 and associated Regulations.
Probity letter from Centium regarding the 2020 Safe Work Awards.
Congratulations to the winners of the 2019 SafeWork Awards, whose stories are shared here.
Category 1: Leadership in workplace health and safety culture – embedding a WHS landscape within your business - small business
InSite Remediation Services
InSite Remediation Services is an environmental remediation company that provides a range of soil and water treatment services. InSite have worked hard to ensure a strong safety culture is entrenched in every part of the business. They strengthened their safety culture with an online safety metrics reporting system – a paperless, accessible and easy to use online system for reporting hazards.
InSite is also recognised for their culture of strong leadership commitment, empowerment of staff through easy to use systems for hazard identification and incident reporting, and consistent and innovative communication with employees.
Category 1: Leadership in workplace health and safety culture - embedding a WHS landscape within your business - large business
Diona Pty Ltd
Diona is a civil engineering business specialising in utility infrastructure across Australia. Diona has implemented a number of highly successful initiatives such as their safety leadership workshops, HSEQ Simple and 'consultation saves lives' programs.
Diona demonstrates its commitment to embedding a work health and safety culture by having safety conversations at all levels. Leaders and senior managers are more involved in safety conversations than ever, resulting in an increase in the reporting of workplace health and safety issues.
Diona’s innovative suite of safety programs empower their workers to improve safety culture every day. These programs encourage early consultation, good reporting, and easy implementation of effective safety systems.
Category 2: Safe by design – best solution to high risk work health and safety issue
Port Waratah Coal Services
Port Waratah Coal Services is the world’s leading coal export facility, located in the Port of Newcastle. A marine surveyor is required to measure the tonnage of coal on board each vessel through a draught survey, involving a rope ladder to get as close as possible to the water line to read the draught marks on the vessel.
After identifying the risk, employees devised a solution to eliminate the need for the marine surveyor to descend the rope ladder altogether with their marine surveyor trolley.
The trolley is lowered by the marine surveyor down the side of the vessel, aided and guided by a rope and magnets to ensure stability. Images of the draught marks are captured with the use of the light and Go Pro camera, which are transmitted back to the surveyor’s mobile tablet on the vessel deck. This solution is recognised as an original design and is now being used at other port businesses nationally and internationally.
Category 3: Safety champion - best individual contribution to WHS
John Harris, National HSEQ Manager, Liberty Industrial
Mr Harris has developed a large number of crucial training programs for high risk work activities on demolition sites including the development and implementation of their high reach demolition training package.
At the time, the high reach excavator was not used in NSW and there was no competency unit or training package available. However the excavator was needed to demolish Lake Munmorah Power Station – the largest demolition if its kind in Australia.
The training package Mr Harris developed included the verification of competency for high reach excavators, using innovative technology such as the Volvo advanced excavation simulator. The training package also features training pathways for unskilled workers to enter the demolition industry and for skilled operators to further develop their skills.
Category 4: Excellence in recovery at work for business
CareSouth is a medium not-for-profit organisation based in Southern and Western NSW. Their recovery at work program is built on their values of compassion, respect, integrity, accountability and inclusion and has been written to encompass CareSouth’s 'everyday therapeutic model' that is built on the foundations of safety, healing and connection.
Key components of the system includes an informed care model, which has a focus on understanding the management of client and worker behaviour following exposure to trauma. They promote proactive and early intervention processes, such as welfare checks and support to workers following exposure to violent incidents. Early communication with injured workers and the use of employee assistance program services is also paramount.
Category 5: Recovery at work achievement award for injured workers
Formerly a Detective Senior Constable within the NSW Police Force, after a workplace injury, Mr Atkinson actively committed to his re-education and redeployment to achieve a long-term goal to work as a secondary school teacher.
Mr Atkinson worked closely with his treating medical practitioners and rehabilitation provider during his rehabilitation and has now successfully completed a Bachelor of Secondary Education with honours, majoring in modern history with minors in ancient history and geography. He completed a final 10-week internship in July 2019.
Mr Atkinson has received conditional authority to teach in secondary schools from the National Education Standards Authority and is currently in the process of obtaining authority to teach from the NSW Department of Education.
Category 6: Most significant contribution to the improvement of workplace health
Sydney Metro made a significant investment in the development of the construction industry’s first occupational health, hygiene and wellbeing standard. The standard is now embedded into all of their major contracts as a contractual condition. It safeguards the health of thousands of Sydney Metro workers, and has led to improvements in how the construction industry manages significant risk, particularly relating to silica dust.
Sydney Metro recognised that their construction activities, particularly tunneling through sandstone and using products that contain quartz, had the potential to produce silica dust. Given Sydney Metro excavates more than 7.6 million tonnes of sandstone underground, this potential exposure meant construction workers could be at risk of occupational lung disease if the silica dust was not appropriately controlled.
The Sydney Metro occupational health, hygiene and wellbeing standard requires contractors to engage technical specialists such as certified occupational hygienists to identify health risks before starting work.
Category 7: At risk worker achievement award
Nathan Owens, Health Safety Environment and Quality Manager, Eden Brae Homes (EBH)
In 2015, Mr Owens introduced a new staff career development program called 'pathways to EBH' which was expanded in 2017 to include their 18 apprentices, who are predominately young workers. The program has since achieved a 100 per cent retention rate for apprentices.
Last year, Mr Owens launched a 16-week English language program for workers from non-English speaking backgrounds to improve site communication and safety. Basic comprehension of safety documents, for example safe work method statements, is a key factor in protecting workers.
This year the program evolved into partnering with contractors to provide direct support to business owners who manage culturally and linguistically diverse workers.
Nathan and EBH are recognised for their well-designed and well-executed initiatives that protect and support high risk workers from culturally and linguistically diverse backgrounds, migrant workers and young workers.
Category 8: SafeWork NSW Excellence Award (selected from winners across all categories)
Port Waratah Coal Services
Port Waratah Coal Services developed and implemented the use of the marine surveyor trolley to eliminate the need for surveyors to descend rope ladders on the sides of vessels to manually check draught marks.
Draught mark inspections take place up to 2,600 times across approximately 1,300 vessels at Port Waratah each year. Port Waratah load vessels 24/7 during all weather conditions, which can increase safety risks for marine surveyors.
Port Waratah Coal Services marine surveyor trolley utilises a trolley, light, Go Pro camera and mobile tablet technology to provide a surveyor with an instant reading of the vessel draught mark from the safety of the deck of a ship.
This innovative solution takes advantage of the latest technology, and goes above and beyond in terms of safety compliance. It is recognised as an original design that eliminates the high risk of a surveyor falling from heights altogether. It has been adopted by other local port businesses that see the benefits of its use, as well as nationally and internationally.