Latrobe Valley
Asbestos Taskforce

INDICATORS OF SUCCESS

Increased awareness of contemporary risks associated with asbestos

Awareness Raising

  1. Develop a single source / portal of truth accessible in various ways by the community, industry and government.
  2. Raise awareness of asbestos related risks to change behaviour, particularly in the areas of apprentices and home renovators.

Completed

  • Research and review of top ranking asbestos content websites in Australia.
  • Asbestos awareness benchmark survey and report.
  • Developed an asbestos information kit for local councils.
  • Published a set of fact sheets on www.asbestos.vic.gov.au.
  • Launched an awareness campaign targeting DIY home renovators in November 2020 including hosting a webinar.
  • Ran a second webinar in conjunction with WorkSafe Victoria in November 2020.
  • Compared findings of 2020 Asbestos awareness survey with 2019 survey. View here
  • Arranged translation of fact sheets into other languages.
  • Conducted community face-to-face engagement activities in Traralgon and Morwell (other planned locations paused due to Covid restrictions).
  • Produced a video aimed at DIY Home renovators to raise awareness of the risks of asbestos exposure when renovating. View here
  • Plan a year-round campaign for asbestos awareness activities in COVID environment. Ongoing
  • Coordinate publication of translated asbestos fact sheets on www.asbestos.vic.gov.au
  • Deliver an awareness campaign in Gippsland featuring the “Breathtaking Renovations” video.
  • Review other official websites and provide advice on updating asbestos information.
  • Conduct the third annual Asbestos Awareness survey and compare findings with previous results.

More accessible disposal methods

Asbestos Management

  1. Ensure that the safe disposal of asbestos is cost effective and that cost is not a barrier to the appropriate disposal of asbestos waste.
  2. Stay informed and contribute to Sustainability Victoria’s Asbestos Disposal Management Plan as appropriate

Completed

  • Research study and development of new model to estimate volume of residential legacy asbestos. (view here)
  • Interviews with licensed asbestos removalists to understand supply chain and identify any barriers and/or concerns.
  • Documented asbestos disposal steps for each local council on the taskforce and produced tailored fact sheets, now available on council websites.
  • Research study into volumes of legacy asbestos in the commercial sector.
  • Review asbestos management models used in other jurisdictions.
  • Review costs associated with asbestos disposal and ways in which these can be minimised.
  • Investigate how waste facilities can record the volume of asbestos being received.
  • Develop a clear understanding of community expectations about asbestos management and disposal in the Latrobe Valley.

Clear understanding of the regulatory arrangements and responsibilities

Regulations

  1. Identify appropriate regulations for management and disposal of domestic and industrial asbestos.
  2. Increase awareness of the contemporary risks of asbestos exposure across whole of government.

Completed

  • Mapping of all regulations relating to asbestos in Victoria across a number of government portfolios.
  • Made a submission to the 2020 Residential Regulations review.
  • Made a set of four key recommendations to the Minister in November 2020 (view here)
  • Review other non-regulatory areas in which changes can be made to reduce the risks of asbestos exposure for all Victorians.
  • Research / build evidence base and government pathway to view asbestos as a health priority.

Increased response to illegal asbestos activity

Enforcement

  1. Develop and implement a joint compliance and enforcement strategy for the management of asbestos targeting government and non -government building and demolition contractors, the do-it-yourself industry and other community management aspects of asbestos such as illegal dumping.

Completed

  • Held separate forum with local council officers to hear and learn about asbestos issues from the local government perspective.
  • Writing up of case study of WorkSafe’s successful Dec 2020 prosecution of non-licensed removal on a domestic property.
  • Further consultation with community to develop and test the complaints/enquiries flow chart.