Australian safety group calls for a Code of Practice on psychosocial risks

The Safety Institute of Australia (SIA) is making serious efforts to increase its relevance to Australia’s occupational health and safety (OHS) profession and the broader community.  Around International Women’s Day, the SIA released a media statement calling for action on workplace bullying, harassment and abuse....

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Safety Systems of Work receives some clarity

Employers and their representatives have long claimed to not understand their occupational health and safety (OHS) obligations and include OHS in their spurious claims of government “red tape”. These claims have become a business mantra but it is BS. OHS is not separate from running a business, making business decisions, or even designing a business …

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“Backbone of the Nation” and safety

In 1984 I was in England during the miners’ strike, a period of profound social and political change in the United Kingdom. The politics of that period have always fascinated me, but my profession has also caused me to look at some of the attitudes to occupational health and safety (OHS). While holidaying recently in …

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An industrial relations perspective on psychosocial hazards

The prevention of workplace psychosocial hazards will be an increasing issue of concern and debate in 2024 as more Australian jurisdictions re-emphasize the application of occupational health and safety (OHS) laws to this insidious hazard.  That debate requires a broad range of voices to better understand prevention strategies and to assess existing strategies that have …

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Psychosocial laws may encourage political risks

In December, Australian law firm Maddocks launched its 2023 Year in Review. Two items were directly relevant to occupational health and safety (OHS) – Sexual Harassment and Psychosocial Safety – both addressed by Catherine Dunlop. The size of the challenge ahead on both these topics was shown by the Australian Financial Review on December 7, …

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UK workplace survey shows the huge misunderstanding on preventing psychosocial harm

The Chartered Institute of Personnel & Development (CIPD) has released an important survey of their members about health and wellbeing at work. Amongst many of the findings is that “Stress continues to be one of the main causes of absence” and that “Heavy workloads remain by far the most common cause of stress-related absence…” So …

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“occupational health is distinct from safety”

Professors Helen Lingard and Michelle Turner have just published a book that was long in development called “Work, Health and Wellbeing in the Construction Industry“. The best advice for reading this book is, for most readers, to ignore the construction context. This book is extremely topical for all industries in Australia as it considers gender, …

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