Welcome to our first update of 2018.

Over the past few weeks we have made some important appointments to the Government Health & Safety Lead team. These appointments are all for 18 months and will help to accelerate the delivery of our work programme and bring health and safety expertise to the team.

Dr Felicity Lamm is coming on board in March to take on the role of Chief Government Adviser Health and Safety. Felicity is currently an Associate Professor at AUT in the Business and Law School. She joined AUT in 2007 after 20 years as Senior Lecturer at Auckland University and successfully established the Centre for Occupational Health and Safety (OHS) Research at AUT which she is the inaugural Co-Director. Felicity will take up the role as a secondment from AUT. She is well known and respected across the health and safety field in New Zealand and internationally.

Shannon Dobson and Kate Nicholls have been confirmed as Principal Adviser Workforce Development and Senior Adviser, Communication and Engagement respectively. Kate and Shannon have done an amazing job in getting us launched since last August.

Matt Campbell is our new Government Adviser and Tom Boderick is our new Senior Government Adviser. I’m sure many of you will have the opportunity to meet Matt, Tom and Felicity over the coming months and will help me to welcome them into their new roles.


We are starting the year with some great events suitable for all levels in the health and safety sector.

On 14 February, the public service chief executive’s formalised their membership with the Business Leader’s Health and Safety Forum. The signing took place at Parliament, and was attended by Hon Iain Lees-Galloway, Minister for Workplace Relations and Safety.

On 23 February, Z Energy is hosting a panel discussion on what good governance of health and safety looks like. Good governance is an area of importance and focus for the public sector, and this session, aimed at deputy chief executives with responsibility for health and safety, will provide a robust discussion with some of New Zealand’s leading thinkers and specialist in governance and health and safety.

On 7 March, Craig Smith, Chair of HASANZ and Chris Alderson, Director of Health, Safety & Wellness at Price Waterhouse Cooper, will lead a workshop for practitioners on what the future of the health and safety workforce will look like. If you would like to attend this session but haven’t RSVP’d, please let kate.nicholls@corrections.govt.nz know.

Our second chief executives’ breakfast is being held on 22 March at the Ministry of Social Development. Brendan Boyle, Chief Executive MSD, will talk about the agency’s response to the Ashburton tragedy. Nicole Rosie, Chief Executive Worksafe NZ, will also present on New Zealand’s performance in health and safety.

Unleashing the Power of Engagement – Employee Engagement in Health and Safety

We are busy preparing for our biggest stakeholder event so far: Unleashing the Power of Engagement.

The full day conference will be held on 10 May at Te Papa, and will include discussions and presentations by top health and safety representatives from academia, unions and the private sector. We will also celebrate employee health and safety representatives with awards recognising exceptional performance. We’re delighted to have keynote speakers such as Hon Iain Lees-Galloway, Minister for Workplace Relations and Safety, Nicole Rosie, Chief Executive, WorkSafe New Zealand, State Services Commissioner, Peter Hughes and Timothy Keating, Chief of the New Zealand Defence Force.

This will be a conference not to be missed. Invitations will be sent out very shortly for agencies to book a table, so keep an eye out for more information.

Safeguard Awards 2018

Entries are now open for Safeguard: The New Zealand Workplace Health & Safety Awards 2018.

The awards are New Zealand’s leading all-sector health and safety awards. They are run by Safeguard magazine (published by Thomson Reuters), with the support of WorkSafe New Zealand.

This year we would love to see strong representation from the public service to showcase the great work we are doing in health and safety. You can find more information about the awards, including category types and entry information on their website(external link).

Nominations close on 4 April, with the finalists announced on 20 April. The awards are presented at a Gala Dinner at Sky City on 30 May 2018.

Bow-tie and Incident Causation Analysis Method (ICAM) sessions

Over 50 sector staff attended our two sessions on bow-tie methodology in December last year, facilitated by Impac (external link). The feedback was very positive and we are looking to run similar development sessions over the course of the year; starting in April with a session on ICAM investigation techniques.

The Incident Causation Analysis Method (ICAM) is a safety investigation analysis method which aims to identify both local factors and failures within the broader organisation and productive system that contributed to an incident. We are in the process of finalising the details of the workshop and will send out more information shortly.

New global health and safety standard set for March

The Institution of Occupational Safety and Health has announced that ISO 45001, the new international standard for occupational safety and health, is set to be published in March.

The new standard aims to give organisations a universally accepted framework for improving employee health and safety, reducing workplace risks and creating healthier, safer working conditions.

You can read more about the publication of the new standard here.(external link)

Health and Safety Summer Intern Programme

The interns are now almost at the end of their summer programme and have been on agency visits to the Ministry of Education, NZ Police, Fire and Emergency and Worksafe NZ.

Gaining an understanding of the wide variety of environments and risks that public servants and frontline workers face is an important part of the programme. The Ministry of Education has a different risk profile to Police and Fire and Emergency, and Worksafe is completely different again as the industry regulator.

The interns found the all visits incredibly interesting, and have thoroughly enjoyed their time over the last three months.

We have sent out a survey to those who were part of the programme, and the results will help us shape the programme for the 2018/19 intake.