The introduction of a corporate manslaughter law to deal with
work-related deaths in New Zealand is "unlikely", says Prime
Minister John Key.
He made the statement while being questioned about the state
of the nation's forestry industry, after a forestry worker
died on Friday, bringing this year's death toll to nine.
Mr Key told 3News this morning that while it was "not
impossible" to conceive of bringing such a law into
legislation, he did not think it likely.
"Now let's go and see, if people want to present a stronger
argument here that's always possible, you need to follow that
up with the Justice Minister and the Attorney-General," he
"But certainly the feedback I've had in terms of how it's
worked in the UK was it wasn't very effective."
Mr Key said nine deaths in the forestry industry this year
was "nine deaths too many" and the "industry has to change".
"Regrettably it's somewhat consistent with numbers that we've
seen in terms of deaths that have taken place in our industry
for a very long period of time," he said.
"So the Government is forcing change, both through a new
regulator, through the work that we did in work place safety,
in terms of audits that are happening at every forestry
outlet in New Zealand, and we've conducted about 150 of those
and actually stopped 14 operations, I think, operating in the
short term until they've fixed their problems, we've written
to every forestry owner.
"So there's a series of different actions that the Government
is taking to try and make sure that workers in the industry
- Patrice Dougan of APNZ