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Creating healthier and safer workplaces together

New Zealand’s Accident Compensation Corporation (ACC), is floating the idea of new products which may allow a company to link its ACC levies to individual workplace performance rather than against an industry average.

ACC, who manages workplace accident claims, is proposing some new products to create safer and healthier workplaces and they want your feedback.

The products being offered may affect ACC levies businesses pay so it is important businesses understand what the changes would mean for them if they are adopted.

ACC is a government body with a remit to help prevent injuries in New Zealand workplaces through education and consultation, managing worker rehabilitation after a workplace accident and issuing funds drawn from employer levies to assist with this process.

ACC collects levies from New Zealanders through five avenues:

  • Income levy (similar to a tax)

  • Business levy

  • Petrol levy

  • Vehicle registration levy

  • Government funding

“If someone in New Zealand has an accident and we cover their injury, we use this money to help pay for and support their recovery,” the ACC website explains. “This includes treatment, health, rehabilitation and support services, loss of income or financial help and injury prevention in the community.”

This is the third phase of a review of ACC’s Workplace Safety Incentive Products. The first phase was consultation with employers and workers which offered ACC insight into what was needed and ways to simplify and improve its product offerings.

The second phase allowed ACC to draw 18 insights into workplace health and safety incentives from the consultation process including that a “change in outcomes requires a focus on practices and cultures” and “workplace levies feel like a tax not an insurance”.

The two new workplace safety incentive products proposed are:

  • Product A – A possible default option for most businesses, regardless of size and health and safety (H&S) maturity

  • Product B – for businesses which can demonstrate strong, existing H&S performance and are willing to manage staff claims and rehabilitation.

ACC explains the two new products include the ability to link your workplace H&S levies with your own workplace performance rather than measured against the industry average.

“These changes reflect a shift from a ‘compliance’ focus to an ‘outcomes’ focus, where injury prevention and its link to the levy you pay is well understood and all businesses invest in preventing injuries,” ACC said.

“Our intention is to build on this initial set of products. For example, at a later stage, we might consider a product option aimed at businesses with more complex operating environments (eg multi-entity businesses).”

ACC will release the third phase of its product review on May 14 and will be accepting feedback until June 10. To review the ACC’s proposal and to provide feedback, visit the website.

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