Worksafe warns businesses to be wary of cold callers


WorkSafe Victoria is urging businesses to be wary of cold callers offering health and safety services

November 25, 2010

WorkSafe Victoria is urging businesses to be wary of cold callers offering health and safety services after a formal warning was issued to a company selling safety products.

The Australian Competition and Consumer Commission issued the warning alleging the company made false or misleading representations concerning the need for workplace safety materials and harassment or coercion.

The alleged conduct may have contravened the Trade Practices Act (1974) or the Australian Consumer Law, the ACCC says.

WorkSafe says it frequently receives calls from businesses saying they have been approached to take advantage of a range of products and services including safety signs, publications and first aid courses.

"In many cases, businesses develop the idea that the business is some way connected to WorkSafe and in some situations the business owner is threatened with some form of retribution if they don’t take up the offer," WorkSafe General Manager of Operations Lisa Sturzenegger says

"WorkSafe Victoria has no commercial operations and we don’t endorse commercial products, directly test equipment or conduct training."

She is calling on businesses to seek advice and determine whether what is offered is value for money.

"It’s hard enough running a business without someone preying on your goodwill or lack of knowledge," Sturzenegger says.

"The old saying ‘let the buyer beware’ should always be at the front of mind when dealing with cold callers. They might be legitimate but caution is essential."

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