QTA applauds Newman Government on workers’ comp changes

Garske_1620The trucking industry applauds the Newman Government for its proposed amendments to workers’ compensation legislation announced today by the Attorney-General, Jarrod Bleijie.

The Queensland Trucking Association (QTA) says it has never sought anything other than a fair go for employers and employees in its advocacy for a viable and fair workers compensation scheme.

The rising cost of workers’ compensation insurance has had a major negative impact on the heavy vehicle/road freight industry as a consequence of the ever increasing burden of WorkCover premiums. The current industry rate for Road Freight Transport is $5.36 per $100 dollars of wages albeit the average premium across all industries is $1.45.

The QTA has previously provided a detailed submission to Government seeking to put the focus back on injury management, rehabilitation and return to work outcomes for injured workers, particularly in the case of those workers with a low Work Related Impairment.

Peter Garske, Chief Executive Officer, QTA says, “the amendments to WorkCover Legislation announced today including the introduction of a common law threshold of 5%, vigilant investigation of fraudulent claims, employers having access to the claims history of applicants, and the maintenance of the journey provisions will provide significant relief to employers in our industry from ever increasing workers’ compensation premiums.”

“QTA Ltd understands that the announcement by the Government will significantly reduce premiums, whilst ensuring that the scheme remains fully funded and sustainable, effectively balancing the interests of employers and workers.”

The heavy vehicle/road freight industry has previously supported the maintenance of journey to work provisions and has consistently supported the need for a Scheme with statutory benefits to cover both lost wages, medical expenses and access to the Statutory lump sum compensation.

“The Queensland Government’s changes to the scheme will not disadvantage any employee who has a significant claim for personal work related impairment injury at common law. Conversely the financial viability of small business employers and employment opportunities in our industry will be enhanced by WorkCover Premiums for individual employers not rapidly increasing as a consequence of common law out of court settlements at the lower end of Impairment,” he says.

“Queensland employees will continue to correctly benefit from a Workers’ Compensation Scheme which remains the best in the country.”

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