Mines Minister clears way for crucial safety laws
MINES Minister Anthony Lynham has spoken out about a plan to introduce industrial manslaughter laws to the mining sector.
Dr Lynham told Queensland Parliament this morning he will be bringing legislation into the House next year that will create the offence of industrial manslaughter.
It comes after tributes poured in yesterday for Brad Duxbury, 57, who tragically died on Monday night while working underground at Carborough Downs mine.
"This offence already exists on other Queensland workplaces, and our mine and quarry workers will have the same protections," Dr Lynham said.
"The government is currently consulting with stakeholders, including the QRC, mining companies and unions on the introduction of legislation into this House.
"There is also legislation before the House to establish a new independent resources safety and health regulator."
Dr Lynham described these reforms as "crucial".
He also said the State Government already had "runs on the board" in protecting the state's mining workforce.
This includes sweeping reforms to prevent and detect black lung disease.
"Mr Speaker, Queensland already has the toughest mine safety and health laws in the world," Dr Lynham said.
"But when it comes to protecting life and limb, there's no end point.
" … Every day is another opportunity to improve. Because the most important thing to come off a work site is a worker."
Burdekin MP and Shadow Mines Minister Dale Last yesterday said the State Government's response to the spate of mine fatalities was "not good enough".
"To those opposite I say that people are more important than politics; people are more important than your throwaway lines," Mr Last told parliament.
"To Queensland's resource workers, their families, their friends and colleagues I say that you deserve better. You deserve the truth."