Published: 01 December 2016
Author: Ross Inglis
Victorian Government to review WorkSafe disputation process
RMIT inquiry to focus on injured workers
The Andrews Labor Government has commissioned a review of the workplace injury disputation procedures followed by the Victorian WorkCover Authority to make sure injured workers are not having their claims to benefits or compensation denied or delayed.
The independent review will be carried out by RMIT University’s Centre for Innovative Justice.
It is expected that the review will examine specifically the impact of the disputation system on the health and rehabilitation prospects of injured employees.
The review follows in the wake of an inquiry by the Victorian Ombudsman into the management of complex workers’ compensation claims by WorkSafe, which exposed and criticised the delaying tactics used by insurance companies to prolong WorkSafe injury claims – a practice which we also slammed at the time.
The review’s findings will possibly feed into a major review of the entire Victorian Workplace Compensation Act, hopefully recognizing how the Workcover system often stands in the way or the rehabilitation of people who are injured at work, and which often exacerbates their health problems.
This is a major policy opportunity for the union movement to get some justice for injured workers.
While the RMIT review will consult a wide range of stakeholders, it is expected to call for and investigate the experiences of injured workers within the system.
RMIT Centre for Innovative Justice: http://www.rmit.edu.au/news/podcasts/talking-innovative-justice