NZ corporates taking a lead in health & safety

This new award, sponsored by the Business Leaders’ Health & Safety Forum, is made to senior executive or director who is not health and safety practitioner but whose leadership has helped transform their organisation’s health and safety culture. Chair of the Forum, Rob Jager, said it was appropriate that the Forum sponsor this new leadership category and it was positive that all three finalists were Forum members.

Chair of the Forum, Rob Jager, who is also chair of the government’s Independent Taskforce on Health & Safety and of Shell New Zealand, presented the award to Adams. Jager said that leaders have the biggest role in health and safety in the workplace; they set the tone and the environment. Adams took very “hands-on” approach in his company, taking personal responsibility for ensuring safe workplace.

Jager told the dinner guests at the awards ceremony held at SkyCity Auckland on May 29, that the Business Leaders’ Health & Safety Forum was set up in 2010 with the support of the Ministry of Labour. It was in response to New Zealand’s poor workplace death and accident record, but already he could sense the Forum’s influence and that the “winds of change” were blowing throughout New Zealand’s industrial sector. Forum membership now comprises the CEOs or senior executives of 140 of New Zealand’s major businesses.

The Supreme Award for the Ministry of Business Innovation and Employment / ACC Best Overall Contribution to Improving Workplace Health & Safety in NZ went to Ag-Tech Industries of Dargaville for their crush protection device for preventing injury from rolling quad-bikes – the number one cause of farm injuries. Ag-Tech also won the SICK Best Use of Design to Eliminate or Isolate Hazard category.

The July Leadership issue of Management magazine will feature an interview with George Adams and an in-depth look at the work of the Business Leaders’ Health & Safety Forum.

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