Tireless effort rewarded
NOT-FOR-PROFIT group the Central Highlands Regional Resource Use Plan Co-Op has been nominated in the Australia Community Group of the Year Award.
The nomination is part of the 2019 Queensland Community Achievement Awards and recognises the group's efforts in supporting workplace health and safety with its popular SafeStation program.
Finalists will be presented and winners announced at a presentation dinner on Friday, November 29.
Co-op executive officer Simone Parker said the award was a "great recog- nition” of the group's work in the region and it was also a chance to spread the word about organisation's work.
The co-op's products and services include workplace health and safety for agricultural businesses with SafeStation, project management, property planning and mapping, capacity building and training opportunities and a Connectivity Hub.
Ms Parker said SafeStation - which was introduced 18 months ago - helped agricultural businesses and the people who work in them be safe by enabling them to develop and implement a practical but comprehensive work- place health and system.
"We have networks across the community and specifically with agricultural landholders which allow us to collaborate with a broad range of stakeholders and provide expert advice.”
Ms Parker said agriculture was one of the most dangerous industries in Australia in terms of accidents and fatalities and the co-op had identified a significant gap in the businesses they worked with in that they did not have Work Health and Safety systems in place.
"This exposes business to significant risk and has impacts on the long-term sustainability of agricultural industries that exist in the region,” she said.
"SafeStation was developed to fill this gap and prevent the people we know and love becoming one of the statistics.”
She said the system had been designed to "take the worry out of meeting the obligations of employers and business owners” with a system that could be easily incorporated into operations immediately.
Currently, the system is used by 30 businesses mostly concentrated in Central Queensland but it can be delivered to anywhere in Queensland.
"I think there's a lot of fear around workplace health and safety and what you have to do so we try and break through that,” Ms Parker said.
"It's about trying to make it simple and practical for people. Once they've got their system in place it also helps with a lot of other business systems like human resource management and the overall efficiency of the business.”
Event manager Hanna Doherty said the awards recognised those who work tirelessly to improve their communities by promoting the social, economic and environmental prosperity.