The Department of Housing and Works will carry out asbestos inspections of all its 19,000 public housing dwellings constructed prior to 1990, Housing and Works Minister Michelle Roberts said today.
“I have also directed the State Government inter-departmental Asbestos Steering Committee - WA Government Buildings to monitor that all State Government agencies complete asbestos registers and management plans for all their buildings within 12 months,” Mrs Roberts said.
“While the management of structural asbestos in buildings is the responsibility of individual government agencies, the Asbestos Steering Committee will ensure that all registers are up-to-date and that there are appropriate management plans in place.”
Mrs Roberts was responding to a report by the Auditor General which found that a number of State Government agencies lacked comprehensive asbestos registers and management strategies for buildings constructed prior to 1990.
The Minister said the Department of Housing and Works would make available its expertise in this area to assist other agencies to expedite completion of their asbestos registers.
“The department’s officers are experienced in identifying structural asbestos and any works that are needed will be done in accordance with relevant regulations and guidelines, including using specialist asbestos demolition and removal contractors,“ she said.
“Whilst I accept the Auditor General’s findings, I can reassure people that an enormous amount of work is done in managing asbestos in the department’s public and Government employee housing stock.
“Dealing with asbestos is an integral part of all the Department of Housing and Works’ housing and construction programs, and any asbestos-related work is undertaken in a manner that is safe, professional and compliant with all the relevant regulations.”
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