Another Tragedy Prompts Unions To Call For Halt To Ceiling Insulation Scheme

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18th November 2009, 09:25pm - Views: 557
Another Tragedy Prompts Unions to Call for Halt to Ceiling Insulation Scheme

The Queensland Council of Unions has called for an immediate halt to the ceiling insulation installation scheme following the death of a young labourer in Rockhampton today.

The 16 year old male is believed to have died following damage to electrical wiring whilst installing ceiling insulation with two of his co-workers receiving electrical shocks.

This follows the death of a 22 year old male and serious injury of a 19 year old female last month who were also installing insulation due to damaged electrical wiring. QCU Assistant General Secretary Amanda Richards said that unions had many concerns about the scheme and called for an inquiry to be undertaken before more deaths occurred.

"This young man will not be returning home to his family and this is a terrible tragedy for all concerned.

"Following the introduction of the federal government scheme, which allows for generous rebates for householders choosing to insulate their ceilings, this industry has taken off in a big way.

"This has resulted in a new companies entering the industry with little training supplied to workers and no adherence to health and safety issues.

"The most sensible course of action is to stop the scheme while an inquiry is undertaken so that some of these important issues can be dealt with properly."

Ms Richards said that union concerns centered around:

* the proliferation of companies now listed;
* clear lack of induction for workers in this industry;
* lack of training for workers in this area;
* lack of compliance auditing of companies to ensure the work is undertaken by competent persons, or competent person being available to supervise; and
* health and safety issues associated with the work leading to the deaths of workers.

"The industry needs to be cleaned up to prevent this type of tragedy occurring again."

More Info:

Amanda Richards (QCU Assistant Secretary)
0418 752 569

Tania Reeves (Media/Comms Officer)
0418 700 419

SOURCE: Queensland Council of Unions

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