The Asbestos Safety and Eradication Agency was established to provide a national focus on asbestos issues which go beyond workplace safety to encompass environmental and public health issues.
The agency has broad functions including:
- encouraging, coordinating, monitoring and reporting on the implementation of National Strategic Plan on Asbestos Awareness and Management (NSP)
- reviewing and amending NSP as required
- publishing and promoting NSP
- providing advice to the Minister about asbestos safety
- liaising with Commonwealth, State, Territory and local and other governments, agencies or bodies about the implementation, review or amendment of NSP; as well as asbestos safety in general; and
- commissioning, monitoring and promoting research about asbestos safety.
The agency is a statutory authority established on 1 July 2013 following the assent of the Asbestos Safety and Eradication Agency Act 2013 and is responsible through its Chief Executive Officer (CEO) to the commonwealth minister for employment.
For financial purposes, the Agency operates under the Public Governance, Performance and Accountability Act 2013 (PGPA Act) and the Public Service Act 1999 (Public Service Act) for staffing purposes.
Portfolio Budget Statements
In 2010, a wide ranging review was established by the commonwealth government to make recommendations for the development of a national strategic plan to improve asbestos management in Australia. The review encompassed asbestos management issues beyond work health and safety to include environmental and public health issues. The review also looked at issues including education and public awareness, removal, transport and disposal of asbestos.
The Asbestos Management Review Report released in August 2012 recommended the development of a national strategic plan to improve asbestos awareness and management in the broader community. The review recommended that an independent national agency be established to guide the implementation of the plan.
The Office of Asbestos Safety was established in September 2012 to start this work. The office worked closely with state and territory governments as well as key stakeholder organisations to develop the national strategic plan.
The Office of Asbestos Safety was replaced by the Asbestos Safety and Eradication Agency on 1 July 2013 by the creation of the Asbestos Safety and Eradication Agency Act 2013. The agency and its council is tasked with implementing the plan.
The Asbestos Safety and Eradication Agency Act 2013 also established the Asbestos Safety and Eradication Council made up of a Chair and nine members who have been selected for their experience and expertise with asbestos safety, public health, corporate governance or the representation of people with asbestos-related diseases and their families. The functions of the Council include:
- to provide advice, and make recommendations, to the CEO about the performance of the Agency’s functions, on its own initiative or at the request of the CEO
- to provide advice to the Minister about asbestos safety
- to monitor the implementation of the National Strategic Plan by commonwealth, state, territory and local governments
- to provide advice, and make recommendations, about the National Strategic Plan and annual operational plans.
Working with governments
The issues around asbestos are significantly broad and encompass a range of areas such as work health and safety, environment, public health, planning and emergency response.
It is important that all levels of government work together and take an active role in the eradication, handling and awareness of asbestos to assist in reducing the incidence of asbestos related diseases.
To achieve this objective, two government stakeholder groups have been established to advise and assist in the decision making process. The two groups are the:
- Asbestos Interdepartmental Committee comprising representatives from Australian Government departments and agencies
- National Asbestos Safety Reference Group comprising representatives from state and territory government agencies and a representative from the Australian Local Government Association.
These two groups will meet several times a year to participate in the ongoing development and implementation of NSP. The development of the Agency’s annual operational plans will be informed by consultations with these groups.
Working with stakeholders
Safe asbestos management and awareness is a matter of interest to a broad range of stakeholders.
To ensure that the community’s concerns are heard and addressed, the Agency will work in partnership with its stakeholders to ensure the priority areas in NSP reflect the needs of the community.
NSP is not a static document, and in the ongoing development of NSP, the Agency will undertake a leadership role and facilitate a whole of community approach that addresses community concerns about asbestos.
To achieve this, the Agency will engage and work in partnership with industry, unions, organisations that advocate asbestos safety and the community in general to achieve the aims of NSP.
Such consultation will be an ongoing part of this Plan and aims to identify opportunities to improve outcomes. Further, the development of the Agency’s annual operational plans will be informed by consultations with these groups.
Agency grants announcements
This document provides a list of grants awarded by the Asbestos Safety and Eradication Agency in the period 1 July 2013 to present.
Senate Order – Listing of Agency Contracts > $100,000
Senate Order 192 of 2001 requires all Financial Management and Accountability Act 1997 agencies to publish a list, which includes the following details relating to each contract entered into by the agency which has not been fully performed or which has been entered into during the previous twelve months, and which provides for a consideration to the value of $100,000 or more:
- the contractor, the amount of the consideration and the subject matter of each such contract,
- the commencement date and the duration of the contract,
- the relevant reporting period and the twelve month period relating to the contract listings,
- whether each such contract contains provisions requiring the parties to maintain confidentiality of any of its provisions,
- whether there are any other requirements of confidentiality,
- a statement of reasons for the confidentiality,
- an estimate of the cost of complying with this order, and
- a statement of the method used to make the estimate.
The estimated cost of complying with the order is $350, based on the estimated number of hours involved to collect, analyse and compile the information and applying salary costs and on-costs.
You can contact us via the Contact Form or by writing to:
Asbestos Safety and Eradication Agency
Level 8, 255 Elizabeth Street, Sydney NSW 2000
PO Box 9880
Sydney NSW 2001