Appendix A: Other mandatory information

Work health and safety

The ATSB's Work Health and Safety Committee was established consistent with the obligations under the Work Health and Safety Act 2011 (WHS Act). The Committee has 10 elected Health and Safety Representatives and met on four occasions during 2015–16. The Committee continues to report to the ATSB Commission and Executive on a quarterly basis.

The Committee consists of Health and Safety Representatives (HSRs) from each of the ATSB's work areas and also includes management representatives.

The main activities undertaken this year by the Work Health and Safety Committee include:

ATSB staff members continue to express confidence in the agency's ongoing commitment to provide a safe workplace, as demonstrated by the following staff census results:

During 2015–16, one compensation claim was submitted and accepted by Comcare. There were no reportable incidents under the WHS Act.

In terms of other wellbeing indicators, approximately six per cent of staff accessed the employee assistance program (EAP) and the unscheduled absence rate per full time employee has risen slightly from 12.9 days to 13.6 days. This rise and overall high use of unscheduled absence can be explained (offset) by a number of known longer term return to work programs.

Advertising and market research

The ATSB did not conduct any advertising campaigns during 2015–16 and did not incur any expenses with advertising, market research, polling, direct mail or media advertising agencies.

Ecologically sustainable development and environmental performance reporting

(section 516A of the Environment Protection and Biodiversity Conservation Act 1999)

The ATSB is fully committed to the principles of Ecologically Sustainable Development. The nature of its work as Australia's national transport safety investigator—with a focus on the investigation of transport accidents, research into transport safety and dissemination of safety information—means that the ATSB's commitment is expressed through its day-to-day activities within its offices.

The ATSB operates under the Energy Efficiency in Government Operations (EEGO) policy and through its sub-lease office accommodation arrangements with Department of Infrastructure and Regional Development, the ATSB's environmental management system complies with ISO 14001:2004, the international standard for environmental management systems. The system is focused on ATSB's office-based activities in Canberra. Initiatives are applied at Regional office premises where appropriate.

The ATSB has contracted out its data centres to private providers, with the result that servers and ICT infrastructure are located outside ATSB premises. This produced a significant saving in energy use. The ATSB has limited its energy use through various initiatives that focus on improving the energy efficiency of the property portfolio, for example:

Grant programs

The ATSB did not administer any grant programs during 2015–16.

Changes to disability reporting in annual reports

Since 1994, no-corporate Commonwealth entities have reported on their performance as policy adviser, purchaser, employer, regulator and provider under the Commonwealth Disability Strategy. In 2007–08, reporting on the employer role was transferred to the Australian Public Service Commission's State of the Service Report and the APS Statistical Bulletin. These reports are available on ASPC's website at www.apsc.gov.au. From 2010–11, entities have no longer been required to report on these functions.

The Commonwealth Disability Strategy has been overtaken by the National Disability Strategy 2010–2020, which sets out a ten year national policy framework to improve the lives of people with disability, promote participation and create a more inclusive society. A high level two-yearly report will track progress against each of the six outcome areas of the strategy and present a picture of how people with disability are faring. The first of these progress reports was published in late 2014, and can be found at www.dss.gov.au

Freedom of Information website Links

The following information explains how to request access to documents held by the ATSB under the Freedom of Information Act 1982 (FOI Act). It also explains what records the ATSB holds, and what arrangements the ATSB has in place for outside participation.

Entities to the FOI Act are required to publish information to the public as part of the Information Publication Scheme (IPS). This requirement is in Part II of the FOI Act and has replaced the former requirement to publish a section 8 statement in an annual report. Each agency must display, on its website, a plan showing what information it publishes in accordance with the IPS requirements.

Detailed information about the FOI Act is available via the Office of the Australian Information Commissioner website www.oaic.gov.au and the Federal Register of Legislation website www.legislation.gov.au

How to lodge a request for information

Information about how to make an application under the FOI Act can be found on the ATSB's website at www.atsb.gov.au

A request for access to documents made under the FOI Act must:

Submission of FOI requests, or enquiries about access, should be directed to:

Freedom of Information Coordinator
Australian Transport Safety Bureau PO Box 967
CIVIC SQUARE ACT 2608

Phone: +61 2 6274 6488
Fax: + 61 2 6247 3117
Email: FOI-ATSB@atsb.gov.au

Charges

There are no application fees payable to lodge an FOI request. The ATSB may impose a charge for the work involved in providing access to document(s) required through a request under the FOI Act. These charges are imposed in accordance with the FOI Act and the Freedom of Information (Charges) Regulations 1982. These charges may relate to the time spent searching for and retrieving relevant document(s), decision-making time, photocopying and other costs. The FOI Act also provides that the first 5 hours of decision-making time is waived. The applicant will be notified as soon as possible of an estimate of the charges associated with processing of the request. The request will not be processed until the applicant responds to such notification.

In some circumstances, charges associated with the processing of the request may be remitted. Should the applicant wish to seek remission of the charges, the criteria considered by the ATSB include whether:

The applicant would need to contact the ATSB in writing, or by email, to explain why they meet the criteria, or to inform the agency of overall circumstances which justify non-payment of charges. Requests for the remission of the charges should be forwarded to the Freedom of Information Coordinator.

It may not be possible to obtain access to all the documents sought in an FOI request. Access is limited by exemptions, such as Section 38—secrecy provisions of the FOI Act.

It is important to note that the ATSB is required to perform its functions under Section 12AA of the TSI Act. A significant amount of information gathered by the ATSB during the course of its investigations is defined as restricted information under Section 3 of the TSI Act, and access to such information is exempt from release under subparagraph 38(1)(b)(i) of the FOI Act.

Freedom of Information activity in 2015–16

The ATSB received 20 new requests for access to documents under the FOI Act in 2015–16. Table 19 provides details of ATSB Freedom of Information activity for 2015–16.

Table 19: Freedom of Information activity 4

ACTIVITY IN 2015–2016

NUMBERS

Requests

On hand at 1 July 2015 (A)

1

New requests received (B)

20

Requests withdrawn (C)

13

Requests transferred in full to another agency (D)

0

Requests on hand at 30 June 2016 (E)

4

Total requests completed at 30 June 2016 (A+B-C-D-E)

4

Action on requests

Access in full

0

Access in part

3

Access refused

1

Access transferred in full

0

Request withdrawn

13

Response times (excluding withdrawn)4

0–30 days

1

31–60 days

3

61–90 days

0

90+ days

0

Internal review

Requests received

0

Decision affirmed

0

Decision amended

0

Request withdrawn

0

Review by Office of the Australian Information Commissioner

Applications received

1

Administrative Appeal Tribunal (AAT) review of FOI decisions

Applications received

0

Records the ATSB holds

The ATSB holds records such as:

To view a list of manuals, and other documents the ATSB uses when making decisions or recommendations that affect the public, visit the ATSB website at www.atsb.gov.au

Under 8C of the FOI Act, exempt matter is not required to be published. The ATSB reserves the right to delete exempt matter from its information prior to providing access.

To find out more about the types of personal information the ATSB holds, please refer to the ATSB Privacy Policy on the ATSB website at www.atsb.gov.au

For further information, please contact ATSB either by telephone on 1800 020 616, or by email at atsbinfo@atsb.gov.au

Functions and decision-making powers

The ATSB's functions are detailed in Section 12AA of the TSI Act and are further described throughout this report.

Certain officers exercise decision-making powers under portfolio legislation and other matters. These responsibilities are set out in the Administrative Arrangements Order (AAO) for the Commonwealth of Australia and relate to transport safety, including investigations.

For a complete and up-to-date copy of the AAO, visit www.dpmc.gov.au

To assist ATSB employees in exercising their powers appropriately, and enable access to their decision-making authorities, the ATSB uses an intranet site which allows employees to access delegations online. It also allows employees to check information about the powers and authorities assigned under the legislation set out in the AAO, and by laws such as the Public Governance, Performance and Accountability Act 2013 and the Public Service Act 1999. Powers delegated under the TSI Act are recorded on the back of identity cards for all investigators.

Arrangements for outside participation

The ATSB consults widely to gain the views of its stakeholders and clients about future policy directions and program delivery. This includes consulting with other Australian state and territory government departments and agencies, as appropriate, and with foreign governments—particularly in the context of transport safety investigations. For particular policy issues, the ATSB may also contact a very broad range of stakeholders.

4 These statistics cannot be compared directly with the deadlines set in the Freedom of Information Act 1982, as the FOI Act provides for extensions of time to allow for consultation with third parties, negotiation of charges and other issues.