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Employee Participation in Health and Safety in the Australian Steel Industry, 1935–2006

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  • Raymond Markey
  • Greg Patmore

Abstract

Occupational health and safety (OHS) representatives and committees are the principal form of employee participation mandated by legislation in Anglo-Saxon countries, and therefore have a strong base. However, their existence precedes legislation in some significant cases. This article undertakes a 70‐year historical analysis of the effectiveness and operations of one significant example of pre‐legislative OHS committees in an Australian steelworks. The study finds that effectiveness of the committees as a form of participation depended on a complex complementarity of variables, including relationship with unions, the nature of management commitment, the organizational industrial relations climate and the political and institutional macro environment, consistent with ‘favourable conjunctures’ theory.

Suggested Citation

  • Raymond Markey & Greg Patmore, 2011. "Employee Participation in Health and Safety in the Australian Steel Industry, 1935–2006," British Journal of Industrial Relations, London School of Economics, vol. 49(1), pages 144-167, March.
  • Handle: RePEc:bla:brjirl:v:49:y:2011:i:1:p:144-167
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    File URL: http://hdl.handle.net/10.1111/j.1467-8543.2009.00756.x
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. Tove H. Hammer & David L. Wazeter, 1993. "Dimensions of Local Union Effectiveness," ILR Review, Cornell University, ILR School, vol. 46(2), pages 302-319, January.
    2. Jack Fiorito & Paul Jarley & John Thomas Delaney, 1995. "National Union Effectiveness in Organizing: Measures and Influences," ILR Review, Cornell University, ILR School, vol. 48(4), pages 613-635, July.
    3. Barry Reilly & Pierella Paci & Peter Holl, 1995. "Unions, Safety Committees and Workplace Injuries," British Journal of Industrial Relations, London School of Economics, vol. 33(2), pages 275-288, June.
    4. Joel Rogers & Wolfgang Streeck, 1995. "Works Councils: Consultation, Representation, and Cooperation in Industrial Relations," NBER Books, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc, number roge95-1.
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