Minister for Finance & Services Greg Pearce today announced $550,000 in grants to assist small businesses in understanding the new work health and safety laws.

“This is the biggest change to work health and safety laws NSW has ever seen and we need to supply small businesses with the tools they need to adapt to these changes,” Mr Pearce said.

“Adopting the nationally harmonised work health and safety system was a key election commitment of the NSW Liberals & Nationals and we are now implementing it in Government,” he said.

“With the new laws starting on 1 January, the Government is taking steps to educate businesses through workshops, seminars and other means and the grants will ensure this continues.

“The $550,000 worth of grants will be available to organisations that can develop and implement training programs that help small businesses understand the new laws and how they impact their workplace.

“The assistance will be provided through the WorkCover Small Business Assistance Grants Program in the first half of next year.

“Fundamentally, what is safe practice now will continue to be safe under the new arrangements, but there are differences in the application and detail of the laws and it is important individual workplaces understand their rights and obligations.

“We will commence the rollout of the training programs in early 2012 and a range of resources will be available to assist successful applicants in delivering their training programs.

“We encourage all interested parties to visit and download the Small Business Assistance Grants application form and guidelines.

“The NSW Government is committed to cutting red tape and making it easier to do business in NSW and the new health and safety laws will do exactly that,” he said.

Applications for the grants close at 4:30pm on Monday 30 January 2012.

You can read the PDF version of this media release.

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