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17 December 2009
Changes to the Home Insulation Program will require every person installing insulation to meet minimum training or skill requirements by February 12, 2010, Environment Minister Peter Garrett said today.
“Under this very successful program we have seen more than 840,000 Australian households get insulation installed and get on the path to reduced heating and cooling costs for years to come.
“We have thousands of businesses registered to participate in the scheme and it is supporting jobs across the insulation industry from manufacturing right through to installation.
“Clear training requirements for installers have been a feature of the program from day one, but as I announced recently we believe that safety is paramount under this program and will take those requirements a step further.
“From February 12 on-the-job supervision of untrained or unskilled employees is no longer adequate. Every single installer going into ceilings must have either:
“With the commencement of this program we introduced the country's first national training program for insulation installers and that training is now available nationally.
“Every installer will be required to provide clear evidence of their skills, experience or minimum training standards by February 12, 2010 to continue working under the program.
A statutory declaration will be required for any installer claiming previous industry experience.
“I have made it crystal clear that I will not tolerate anyone abusing this scheme or failing to meet program guidelines. There is no room in the Home Insulation Program for installers who cannot ensure a safe working environment for every employee and quality installations for every household,” he said.
“If installers don’t provide the required evidence by the February 12, they won’t be able to keep working under the program.”
The new requirements come on top of mandatory Occupational Health and Safety training, enhancements to the ‘Install Ceiling Insulation’ training materials and a formal risk assessment for each job. It also follows consultation with the relevant training and industry bodies.
“While these and other safety measures go beyond Australian Standards and the Building Code, the Government has said consistently that we will not hesitate to boost safety, training and compliance requirements if necessary, and that is exactly what we are doing,” Minister Garrett said.
“Importantly, this new requirement will also ensure that people who have recently been employed in the sector receive training and enduring skills that they can take with them beyond the Home Insulation Program,” Mr Garrett said.
The Home Insulation Program is part of the Energy Efficient Homes Package, which has already helped make more than one-in-ten Australian households more energy efficient, enjoying savings in energy bills, reducing their impact on the environment and supporting local jobs.