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Workplace Health and Safety: Do You Know Your Obligations?


  • This month in Australia, around 20 people will die at work
  • This year, 43 of every 1,000 workers will experience a work-related injury or illness
  • Over half will be males
  • The majority will be aged over 50 years.1

Work-related injuries, illnesses and deaths impose significant direct and indirect costs on your business, your workers and the community – the median compensation paid for ‘serious claims’ is over AU$11,000 and the median time lost is 5.2 weeks per year.2

That’s massive, especially when you’re competing in a challenging economic landscape.

As an employer you are obliged, Under the Work Health and Safety Act 2011 (WHS Act) to manage workplace health and safety by eliminating risks to the greatest extent possible.

How? The best way is to take a systematic approach:

Govern: Ensure you have an organisational framework in place, with procedures, policies and processes that maximise safety then prepare staff to manage workplace injuries with first aid responses.

Prevent: Provide information, training, instruction /supervision. Apply risk management principles that comply with work health and safety obligations and will help prevent and manage risks to workers and eliminate or minimise hazards in the workplace.

Respond: In the event of an accident or injury, take steps to identify and remove the hazard that caused it, implement changes to stop it from happening again and provide support to people affected. Be aware of your legal obligations to notify ComCare about serious/ critical and dangerous accidents in the workplace.

Manage: Identify workplace hazards and resolve them before they cause an injury or illness.

Recovery: Be aware of your responsibilities under both the Safety Rehabilitation and Compensation Act 1988 (SRC Act) and WHS Act, in the event that a worker is injured.

Find the workplace health and safety legislation here. Find out more about how you can manage your risks and what to do in the event of a workplace incident at Comcare.

Ayers Can Help You Manage Your Obligations

Managing workplace safety is one of many legal responsibilities you have as an employer. Ayers can take the burden of contract management from your shoulders, freeing you up to focus on the bigger picture. Talk to an Ayers expert today to find out how.

References:

  1. www.safeworkaustralia.gov.au/doc/work-related-traumatic-injury-fatalities-australia-2016
  2. www.safeworkaustralia.gov.au/system/files/documents/1709/em17-0212_swa_key_statistics_overview_0.pdf
  3. www.comcare.gov.au/preventing/managing_risks_in_the_workplace