SafetyAtWorkBlog 2020 statistics

Occasionally SafetyAtWorkBlog publishes a statistical profile in response to one of the most common questions I get asked – who many readers does the blog have? The internet is far from simple and internet statistics are perhaps the most unreliable of all statistics, as some are purposely hidden, others are intentionally obtuse and almost all of it relates to advertising. Bearing that in mind, WordPress records that this blog has been viewed 3,836,432 times in 2020.

Below is some of the data available with a comparison, where possible, with statistics from two years ago.

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Right information, wrong magazine

The OHS Professional magazine for December 2020 contains a very good article about workplace psychological risks and the occupational health and safety (OHS) strategy to prevent mental harm. The only negative is that it is not published in a Human Resources magazine, or one for company directors. The preventative techniques are well known to the OHS profession and based on independent scientific evidence, but it is other managerial disciplines that need to learn the difference between preventing psychological harm and providing symptomatic relief.

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Here’s to a less crappy 2021

Thank you to all the SafetyAtWorkBlog subscribers, followers and lurkers (I know you’re out there). Special thanks to the new subscribers in Asia, the United States and Europe and the very important corporate ones in Australia. It is your subscriptions that keep the SafetyAtWorkBlog operating.

2020 has been a shitty year for many reasons, but none so awful as COVID19. It has claimed several important OHS professionals this year, or professionals who were at least important to me.

The world has changed. The world of work has changed and it has made our jobs harder in many ways.

Please stay safe over the holiday break.

Kevin Jones

Australian Safety Magazine continues to improve

The member magazine of the Australian Institute of Health and Safety (AIHS), OHS Professional, continues to improve in the quality of its articles – less advertorial, more authoritative articles. The current edition, December 2020, includes two particularly good articles- one on the manufacturers’ withdrawal of quad bikes in protest and another on psychological health and safety at work. This article will discuss the quad bike article.

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All being well!

This time last year Australia was facing horrendous bushfires and days of thick smoke. Yesterday we, in Melbourne, received over an inch of rainfall. For many Christmas was far less than joyous. At the same time a global incurable coronavirus was spreading.

Occupational health and safety (OHS) took a back seat in many ways but also came to the fore in others, depending on how exposed employers felt their businesses were and whether OHS professionals were sufficiently adaptable; depending on whether one saw public health that affects work as a workplace hazard, or let the public health people get on with their work. In all these circumstances there was a little bit of panic and varying levels of fear and anguish.

Continue reading “All being well!”

Death, insurance and cultural change

Christopher Cassiniti’s story is tragic on many levels. 18 years old, first construction job, Mum is running the tuckshop onsite, dead in a scaffold collapse in April 2019 at Macquarie Park (a site I know very well, more below), an incident for which the construction company, Ganellen, has pleaded guilty and has been fined less that $1 million which some have reported will likely be paid by its insurance company. The immorality of the insurance pay-out has been spoken of in a media release (November 19 2020) from New South Wales’ Construction Forestry Mining and Energy Union.

CFMEU NSW Construction Secretary, Darren Greenfield, said

“The death of Christopher Cassaniti in April 2019 was one of the most egregious industrial incidents we have seen in recent years and it is outrageous to learn Safework will settle the matter with the builder Ganellen for what is effectively the cost of the company’s insurance excess…,”

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‘No Bystanders Rule’​ Bullshit

Guest Post by Dr Rebecca Michalak

About couple of weeks ago, the Australian Financial Review (AFR) featured a piece on a law firm that had introduced a mandatory approach to reporting sexual harassment – referred to as a ‘no bystanders’ rule. 

To be clear upfront, here is my disclaimer – I am not directly commenting on the law firm in question; there isn’t enough information in the articles to make any objective judgements on that front. The references used from the two media pieces are for illustrative purposes only. Call them ‘conversation starters.’

In the AFR piece, the contractual obligation was outlined to involve: 

“…chang(ing) ‘should’ (report) to ‘must’ – so any staff member who experiences, witnesses, or becomes aware of sexual harassment must report it,” 

with the affiliated claim being,

“That shift really reinforces that there is zero tolerance – and there are no confidences to be kept; it needs to be outed – bystanders [staying silent] will no longer be tolerated.

Continue reading “‘No Bystanders Rule’​ Bullshit”