It is recognised that the importance of effective engagement or consultation with all affected parties lies in the fact that all views are fed into regulatory reform considerations, and information perspectives that might not be otherwise available can be captured. This process can assist in limiting the risk of any unintended consequences of regulatory intervention whilst ensuring the regulatory output achieves its intended purposes.
One of the enduring outcomes of the LRCC reforms was the commitment by NICNAS to operate in partnership with stakeholders. This complements the formal consultation mechanisms with industry, community and governments. The publication of the NICNAS Community Engagement Charter this year has publicly set out the principles and protocols of best practice engagement.
The rapid implementation of the Cosmetic Reforms by NICNAS has been possible through the committed and focused work of the Cosmetic Reforms Implementation Working group, comprising key stakeholder representatives from industry, consumers and specialist interest groups.
The application of the NICNAS Community Engagement Charter to the EC Program review saw a strong public response to consultation forums with a total of 170 people attending 21 forums over eleven locations across Australia and some 55 written submissions. This large public participation in NICNAS reform activities reflects both the level of interest in the EC Program and chemicals in general, as well as the effectiveness of our engagement strategy.