Chalk and Cheese – legal seminars on mental health at work

Over the last few months, various seminars from law firms and others have focussed on how to comply with new and impending occupational health and safety regulations related to psychosocial hazards at work. Over the last fortnight, I attended two such seminars; they were as different as chalk and cheese, even though both had strong …

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Mental health at work –  “plus ça change, plus c’est la même chose”

Psychological health in the workplace seems to be a recent phenomenon because various Australian jurisdictions are strengthening prevention and management strategies through legislative amendments. This is supported by the World Health Organization’s definition of burnout as an occupational phenomenon. But psychological or psychosocial health and safety at work was a concern last century.  In fact, …

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Confusing positions on mental health at work

On March 28 2023, the Victorian Chamber of Commerce and Industry (the Chamber) issued an important media release called “Preparing for workplace psychological health reform”. As with most media releases related to occupational health and safety (OHS) matters, it received little attention. Anton Zytnik a consultant for the Chamber, warned against “mental health washing”, but …

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The new approach to mental health at work may need a new profession

Managing psychologically healthy and safe workplaces makes me extremely nervous. I don’t think that anyone in Australia is suitably qualified to meet the new occupational health and safety (OHS) regulations and expectations imposed by OHS regulators in response to community demands and needs. Perhaps we need a new category of professional.

A rose by any other name… A discussion of “busyness”

Human Resources (HR) professionals must start thinking of worker mental health in occupational health and safety (OHS) as obligations under OHS laws are being refreshed throughout Australia. But the reverse is also true; OHS people must give HR professionals more respect than in the past. As such, new words for psychosocial hazards, job design and …

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A management book that offers clarity and confidence

One of the most common complaints of newly graduated workers has been that although the university has provided a lot of knowledge, the courses are short on practical management skills. Occupational health and safety (OHS) is no different. One may learn about the social determinants of health but may have poor skills in managing or …

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Limited perspectives on working hours

On March 8, 2023, Giuseppe Carabetta, Associate Professor, University of Technology Sydney, wrote about how the current dispute between Politician Monique Ryan and her former Chief of Staff, Sally Rugg, could open the door to lots of legal action through the courts and the Fair Work Commission. Sadly the occupational health and safety (OHS) legislation …

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