What’s the Local Government Safety Advisory Group (LGSAG) all about, and why should members join?

Risk Matters - Summer 2024

Katherine Kempin

Katherine Kempin

Senior People Risk Consultant at LGIS
Katherine is Senior People Risk Consultant at LGIS and provides a variety of professional health and safety advice and support services to local governments in Western Australia. Her role involves liaising with members on work health and safety matters to identify areas of concern and tailor functional solutions for effective risk management, legislative compliance and ultimately harm prevention.

Safety in numbers.

At its core, LGIS is all about local governments working together to achieve best outcomes for their organisations, people
and community. LGSAG is one such initiative where we have collaborated with member representatives to ensure they can create a safe and healthy work environment for their workforce.

The local government industry has a variety of sub-industries in one. To anyone who has not experienced such diversity, this can seem overwhelming when trying to ensure a healthy and safe workplace.

Talking to members, LGIS found there was repetition of health and safety issues across the sector coupled with various levels of experience, so what better way to help resolve health and safety issues than to work collaboratively.

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The Local Government Safety Advisory Group (LGSAG pronounced L-SAG) was created to provide local government personnel with a network of industry peers to work together to better address and resolve workplace health and safety impacts, queries and concerns.

The group comprises of personnel, at various levels across WA, who coordinate work, health and safety management activities to ultimately prevent harm within the workplace.

Common issues include, but are not limited to:

  • Legislative changes and impacts on the industry
  • WorkSafe and other industries, key information, changes and projects
  • Policies, procedures and processes – templates and supporting materials
  • Incidents and recommended controls Preventative projects
    Technology – management systems Assessments and inspections
  • Plant and equipment Training

LGSAG meetings occur periodically, four times throughout the year, both in person and online. The face-to-face meetings are generally held at one of the CBD councils, and predominately attended by local governments from in and around the CBD area.

It’s great to be able to share with other safety professionals, who face the same challenges.

– Michelle Barnfield, City of Kalgoorlie-Boulder

During COVID, LGSAG was significantly important to the sector as health and safety people became more in demand to deal with the risks and issues associated with the pandemic. The group met via Zoom and was very well attended, particularly by regional members. With this in mind, we changed the format of our meetings to be two face-to-face, and two zoom meetings; these changes have seen a significant increase in regional member attendance.

LGIS facilitation of the group improves access across the state for like-minded individuals to come together and navigate health and safety within the sector, on their specific issues.

It’s great to see other safety professionals and have the opportunity to network, as we share common ground.

– Kelly Whitley, City of Melville

Looking at trends within the sector LGIS will facilitate topic discussions, organise guest speakers to provide further information for members to assist them in managing the hazards and risks associated with the activities performed by local governments. This has included traffic management, Main Roads, and WorkSafe.

Health and safety queries and concerns can also be sent at any time at [email protected] for forwarding to the group
for their feedback and support, actively promoting knowledge sharing on common issues.

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