NZRA has made a written submission to Parliaments Education and Workforce Committee in support of the Health and Safety at Work (Volunteer Associations) Amendment Bill and will be making an oral submission to the select committee in due course.
Currently under the HSW Act 2015, volunteer organisations that employ people become a “person conducting a business or undertaking” (PCBU). PCBUs are responsible for ensuring the health and safety of their workers AND volunteers. This bill proposes to update the definition of volunteer associations to include those that employ people for no more than 100 hours per week. Under the new definition, such organisations would not be classed as a PCBU.
Most of us know of various community groups involved in tree-planting or predator-control in urban or peri-urban parks and green spaces. Many of them are driven by Volunteer input, but might have a paid co-ordinator or contractor. We appreciate the important work that volunteer associations in New Zealand do in Parks, and the fact that these organisations often need to employ people. This amendment aims to minimise compliance time and costs for these organisations.
If you want to know more, or have any questions, please contact our Advocacy Manager Sam, on firstname.lastname@example.org or 027 723 9380.