On 14 June 2018, Safe Work Australia released its much-anticipated national guidance material on work-related psychological health and safety.
The Safe Work Australia guidance material provides a systematic and practical approach to managing work-related psychological injury. This will help employers meet their obligations under work health and safety or workers’ compensation laws in Australia. In doing so, the guidance material outlines the following elements to methodically and comprehensively ensure the psychological health and safety of workers:
- Prevent harm by identifying and assessing work related hazards and risks and implementing effective control measures to eliminate or minimise those risks.
- Intervene early with support and assistance for individuals who show signs of vulnerability to help minimise the potential severity of work-related psychological injuries.
- Support recovery by providing access to treatment and rehabilitation services, facilitating sustainable recovery at work or return to work, addressing any remaining work-related psychological hazards and reviewing the effectiveness of control measures.
For an employer, managing employees who are experiencing a mental health condition in the workplace can be challenging. Employers may be uncertain about their legal rights and responsibilities, which can lead to inaction. Similarly, employers may not understand or appreciate their duties concerning employees’ (mental) health at work. The guidance material provides employers with much needed clarity about how to navigate this complex area of law.
The guidance material is available on the Safe Work Australia website. Belinda Winter, a partner in our workplace relations and safety team, runs regular half day training sessions for employers on managing ill and injured employees. Belinda is also a qualified Mental Health First Aid Instructor and runs frequent training for nominated workplace representatives in Mental Health First Aid.
For more information and upcoming training dates, please visit our CGW Events page or contact our Workplace Relations team at 07 3231 2991 or firstname.lastname@example.org.