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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On psychosocial hazards, HR and OHS are getting closer……. slowly

In narrow terms, the occupational health and safety (OHS) profession has largely neglected the management of psychological harm in workplaces. Human Resources (HR) has been the “go-to” on this issue, but various government inquiries have identified major shortcomings in the HR approach. In a recent podcast, Tony Morris of law firm Ashurst interviewed an HR …

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HR needs to broaden its pool of risks

Human Resources (HR) professionals often have an enviable degree of influence over the decision making of company executives. In modern parlance, they are “influencers”; as such it is useful to keep an eye on the advice offered by the association that represents HR professionals, the Australian Human Resources Institute (AHRI). Recently, freelance journalist, David Barbeler …

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Sedentary work risks – two new research reports

Some say occupational health and safety (OHS)  is all about common sense.  This is a tempting fallacy, particularly as it relates to the risks of sedentary work – what earlier generations would describe as “sitting down”.  This month Safe Work Australia (SWA) entered the debate about the health risks of sitting down for too long. …

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Risks of taking bullying or harassment directly to the Courts

Seeking justice through the court system is everyone’s right but sometimes court action is more newsworthy than normal and sometimes the media is used in conjunction with legal actions.  Either way, any court action, particularly on personal matters such as sexual harassment or workplace bullying will be a stressful activity. The workplace safety context of … Continue reading “Risks of taking bullying or harassment directly to the Courts”

Considering organisational violence may provide a more effective path to controlling psychosocial issues at work

Vaughan Bowie is an Australian academic who has chosen workplace violence as his major area of interest. Bowie came to general prominence earlier this century with several books and his contribution to the WorkcoverNSW guidance on workplace violence. His research has taken him to look at “organisational violence” and in October 2012, he addressed the 3rd International … Continue reading “Considering organisational violence may provide a more effective path to controlling psychosocial issues at work”

SafeWorkSA’s approach to psychological harm is as much as it can do but doesn’t have to be

The harm presented by working in Australia’s mining sector has been a concern for a long time. Over the last decade or two, the psychosocial harm from the same work has come to the fore. The occupational health and safety (OHS) responsibility sits clearly with the employers who, in Australia, are often well-resourced national and …

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