Originally posted on August 25, 2022 @ 7:19 PM
Our successful Due Diligence program will be run in Perth 3,4,5 October 2022.
Place are still available for registrations.
Due diligence is essentially a moral activity (https://safetyrisk.net/safety-and-risk-due-diligence-as-a-moral-activity/) that provides a framework for helping, care and support of people as they seek to tackle risk.
Due Diligence is NOT a policing activity, measuring activity or about mechanical compliance.
Nothing as set out in the WHS Act about Due Diligence can be measured.
If you want to know about Due Diligence you can watch Greg Smith in action here:
Or watch my discussion here:
The real give away about Due Diligence is the language in the WHS Act (http://classic.austlii.edu.au/au/legis/nsw/consol_act/whasa2011218/s27.html). Just like ALARP (https://vimeo.com/162637292) Due Diligence is about ‘taking reasonable steps’ to:
- Keep up to date
- Understand operations
- Ensure ‘appropriate’ resources
- Ensure ‘appropriate’ processes
- Commit to obligations under the Act and,
- Verifies resources and processes
All of the language used in the WHS Act regarding Due Diligence is qualitative.
The real energy of Due Diligence is based in mutuality and reciprocation.
Whenever the word ‘duty’ is used (as it is in the AIHS BoK Chapter on Ethics) it invokes a moral dimension towards others. This too is not quantitative but qualitative. One can chose to frame this morality as deontological or there are many other approaches to moral duty that better capture the complexity of moral orientation towards others. A deontological ethic, as proposed by the AIHS BoK Chapter, makes duty a ‘fundamentalist morality’ as if what is good is mystically known by everyone, something akin to ‘common sense’. Hence why the AIHS BoK Chapter pivots on such an obscure notion as ’check your gut’ (https://safetyrisk.net/the-aihs-bok-and-ethics-check-your-gut/).
There is no such thing as ‘common sense’, natural law or objective ethics. There is no absolute in ‘do the right thing’ and ‘check your gut’. Such language is misleading and delusional.
All moral behaviour is situated and contextualised. There is no metaphysical objectivity that directs moral orientation despite what Kant proposed 200 years ago.
So, when it comes to Due Diligence rather than seeking a moral absolute, the law really proposes a problem-solving approach to tackling risk. https://safetyrisk.net/safety-and-risk-due-diligence-as-a-moral-activity/
This is why the WHS Act uses language such as ‘appropriate’, ‘reasonable’ and ‘minimize’.
There is no demand for zero in any legislation associated with safety.
There is no checklist or paperwork process that can ensure Due Diligence.
Due Diligence is anchored to one’s worldview and orientation to others (https://safetyrisk.net/the-safety-worldview-and-the-worldview-of-safety-testing-due-diligence/) and as such, a behaviourist lens or engineering lens will never satisfy.
Due Diligence is about how one is oriented towards risk and those who tackle risk under one’s ‘care’. This is the moral essence of duty under the Act. This is why the omission in the AIHS BoK Chapter on Ethics of any mention of care, helping or personhood is so telling.
I you want to learn more about what Due Diligence is really about, you can register for the Perth workshop or start watching the free video series Risky Conversations (https://vimeo.com/showcase/3938199).