Media release

CONSULTATION ON NEW RETURN TO WORK ARRANGEMENTS

Media release | Thursday, 12 November 2015

The NSW State Insurance Regulatory Authority (SIRA) today opened public consultation for proposed changes to better support the state’s injured workers to return to work.

SIRA Chief Executive Anthony Lean said the agency has released a discussion paper Return to work assistance and is seeking feedback from industry.

“SIRA is undertaking targeted consultation with key stakeholders in response to proposed enhancements to workers compensation around new employment and education and training assistance,” Mr Lean said.

“Delivering recovery and support services to injured workers remains a key priority for the NSW Government,” he said.

“A 2014 review of the NSW workers compensation scheme identified the need to address barriers to return to work, and to provide fair and equitable access to benefits and support, particularly for workers with high needs.

“Following improvements in the financial position of the scheme, the NSW Government announced in August a $1 billion reform package of enhanced benefits for injured workers that included additional return to work support.

“These enhancements include $1000 job ready assistance for injured workers who return to work with a new employer, and a retraining and education grant of up to $8000 for workers with high needs who have been receiving weekly benefits for at least 18 months.”

The discussion paper examines proposed governance arrangements for these enhancements, and the classes of work and education and training that will be eligible for this assistance.

Feedback will be used to help develop the supporting regulation for these benefits.

The discussion paper is available from www.insurancereforms.nsw.gov.au

Email submissions to 2015BenefitsReform@sira.nsw.gov.au Submissions close December 10 2015.

“SIRA and NSW Government remains committed to supporting those injured workers that need it the most while ensuring the financial stability of the Scheme and delivering savings to business,” Mr Lean said.