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Employers and workers across the state are today celebrating their success as winners in the Queensland Safe Work and Return to Work Awards.

Treasurer and Minister for Industrial Relations Curtis Pitt congratulated all of the winners and finalists and said it was inspiring to see a record number of entries, with some being named as finalists in more than one category.

“It’s an important campaign because we know that in many cases getting back to work is the best thing for an injured worker.

“And it’s great to see that spirit on display here at today’s awards.”

Safety Ambassador and NRL legend Shane Webcke also congratulated this year’s winners.

“I am determined to see work health and safety improve in Queensland because my father was killed at work, which ripped a hole in our family,” he said.

“It is wonderful to recognise the achievements of these finalists who are working so hard to reach that goal.”

Mr Pitt, who announced the winners with Shane at a ceremony in Brisbane today, said that Cairns’ Tropical Reef Shipyard and its safety officer Ian Morrison won in an unprecedented four of the thirteen categories.

“The Queensland Government wants businesses across the state to make our workplaces the safest in Australia,” Mr Pitt said.

“Tropical Reef Shipyard is leading by example. It has significantly reduced injury rates by engaging its workers, management, sub-contractors and their customers in the process.

“This combined with smart rehab and return to work practices has led to fewer workers’ compensation claims and as a consequence, lower premiums.

“It’s a win-win for the company and for its workers.

“And they are not alone in leading by example, as all of this year’s winners demonstrate.”

Safe Work Awards categories

Category 4 – Best individual contribution to work health and safety
Winner – Andrew Ryan, Patrick Stevedoring Pty Ltd, Port of Brisbane
Highly commended – Mark Philippi, CB Energy Pty Ltd, Molendinar
Highly commended – Ian Morrison, Tropical Reef Shipyard, Cairns

Category 6 – Most significant improvement to work health and safety performance
Winner – Tropical Reef Shipyard, Cairns
Highly commended – MiniMovers Pty Ltd, Rocklea
Commended – Action Auto Electrics Pty Ltd, Pinkenba

Return to Work Awards categories

Category 2 – Employer achievement award – small/medium employer
Winner – Tropical Reef Shipyard, Cairns

Category 4 – Rehabilitation and return to work coordinator achievement award
Winner – Ian Morrison, Tropical Reef Shipyard, Cairns
Highly commended – Tracey Stark, Drakes Supermarkets, Beenleigh
Commended – Janelle Paton, Hastings Deering, Paget

Category 5 – Best demonstrated leadership in return to work (Nominees selected by judges from all other categories)
Winner – Ian Morrison, Tropical Reef Shipyard, Cairns
Finalist – Lend Lease, Bowen Hills