Meeting Your Health Duties

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Updated: March 27, 2020

Safe Work Australia has released new national guidance on work-related psychological health and safety.

W ork-related mental health conditions (also known as psychological injuries) have become a major concern in Australian workplaces due to the negative impact on individual employees, and the costs associated with the long periods away from work that are typical of these claims.

Each year 7,200 Australians are compensated for work-related mental health conditions, equating to around 6 per cent of workers’ compensation claims, and approximately $543 million is paid in workers’ compensation for work-related mental health conditions.

Safe Work Australia has released guidance material to help small business owners or operators understand their role as officers and their responsibilities under WHS laws.

“If you make or influence the significant financial or operational decisions for a business then you may be an ‘officer’ under WHS laws”, said Safe Work Australia’s CEO Michelle Baxter. “As an officer, you have a duty under WHS laws to look for ways to lead on WHS matters.”

“Our new guidance material includes videos of real officers explaining how they fulfil this important role within their business,” said Ms Baxter.

Safe Work Australia produced the guidance material after investigations found that small businesses needed more practical guidance about their WHS obligations. The guidance material, including short videos, is available on a dedicated web page for officers – www. safeworkaustralia.gov.au/topic/officer-duty

A broader guide for officers of businesses of all sizes is also available.

Find the Guide Work-related psychological health and safety at www.safeworkaustralia.gov.au/system/ files/documents/1911/work-related_ psychological_health_and_safety_a_ systematic_approach_to_meeting_ your_duties.pdf.

For more information visit www.safeworkaustralia.gov.au
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