UnionsACT calls on ACT Govt to urgently implement inquiry recommendations on combustible aluminium cladding

UnionsACT today calls on the ACT Government to urgently implement recommendations from the interim report from the Senate Inquiry into Aluminium Composite Cladding.

The Senate Inquiry has made eight recommendations, including:

  1. Implement a total ban on the importation, sale and use of Polyethylene core aluminium composite panels as a matter of urgency;
  2. Work with states and territories to establish a national licensing scheme, with requirements for continued professional development for all building practitioners;
  3. imposing a penalties regime for non-compliance with the National Construction Code such as revocation of accreditation or a ban from tendering for construction work and substantial financial penalties; and
  4. Establish a Director Identification Number scheme to prevent company directors from engaging in illegal phoenix activity.

Although the Senate Inquiry principally looked at measures that the Commonwealth Government could take, the Mr Fluffy experience shows that the ACT Government cannot rely on the Commonwealth to act.

UnionsACT is further calling on the ACT Government to:

  • Ensure the ACT Government Working Group on this issue is equipped to oversee a methodical and rigorous audit process of cladding installed on all buildings in the ACT, not just government buildings;
  • Identify and remove of non-conforming and non-compliant composite cladding; and
  • Create a register of buildings where combustible cladding is installed, and the fire safety measures used in those buildings.

The following quotes are attributable to Alex White, secretary of UnionsACT:

“The ACT Government must urgently consider how it can implement the Senate inquiry recommendations into the use of combustible aluminium cladding.

“It is unacceptable for the ACT Government to keep waiting for the Federal Liberal government to act to protect workers and the community in Canberra.

“In the absence of Federal action, the ACT government must ban the use of combustible aluminium cladding, extend the existing ACT building license scheme, and take steps to drive dodgy, dangerous building contractors from the industry.

“The ACT Government must also establish a public register for buildings with combustible cladding installed, so workers and residents in them are aware the risks.

“Unions have raised the issue of non-compliant building products with the ACT Government for years. The time to act is now. No more excuses.”

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