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OH&S stands for occupational health and safety. It is the “cross-disciplinary area concerned with the safety, heath and welfare of people engaged in work or employment.” It is the measures taken by the employer to make the working environment as safe and productive as possible for all who use it. There are laws and legislation which have been designed to optimise workplace safety and to protect all Australian workers.
New work health and safety (WHS) laws commenced on 1 January 2012 in many states and territories to harmonise occupational health and safety (OH&S) laws across Australia. Those states and territories (including Tasmania) which did not implement these new laws are still responsible for making and enforcing their own OH&S Act.
All senior staff are required to attain an Occupational First Aid certificate:
We use this checklist for ergonomic equipment considerations:
We use this checklist to ensure the safest and most healthy workstations are provided for our workers:
If you have any questions about safety in the workplace, your current designated safety representative is Olivia Higgins-Shaw. She is available to answer all enquiries and concerns you may have about safety issues.
Power-cords and cables: should not trail across the floor where they can be tripped over; power-boards should not be overloaded. Surfaces: floor surfaces should be clean and clear of obstructions, even, and non-slip; work surfaces should be uncluttered and must be able to bear the weight of the equipment upon it. Manual handling: if heavy objects need to be moved or lifted, correct equipment (trolleys etc.) and procedure (bend & lift) must be used.
Stress: if workers are feeling the effects of stress they should communicate this without fear of reproach. It is in all our best interests to reduce stress. Chemicals: correct handling procedures should be followed; correct disposal of chemicals and related equipment should be followed; sufficient ventilation is required. Workstation: checklists should be used to ensure workstations are set up to be of maximum health to each individual worker.
Kitchen: the staff kitchen should be set up to ensure safety of electrical equipment, hot water etc. Bullying: all incidents of bullying should be reported immediately and handled seriously. Lighting: sufficient lighting should be provided to prevent eye-strain and to reduce tripping and highlight hazardous debris such as sharp objects or foodstuffs. Training: all stuff must be made aware of emergency procedures and safety training i.e. First aid.
Analyze site operations. Obtain necessary documentation and information. Designate person to administer the office safety procedure requirements. Provide required training of office personnel. Inventory material and equipment i.e. Hazard warning signs; lighting; ladders; chemicals. Perform annual inspection, assessment, testing. Continue to review documentation and information. Provide refresher training. Inspect/replace/maintain material and equipment.
Staff reports risk or incident to manager immediately. Manager must take action to prevent any person being further exposed to the hazard. Appropriate medical or other emergency services should be contacted immediately if required. If the event is a serious incident or dangerous occurrence notify the OH&S unit immediately. Conduct an investigation with the worker, consulting with the health & safety representative and / or OH&S Consultant as required.
Identify the factors which may have contributed to the hazard or incident. Assess the level of risk associated with the hazard & determine controls/actions to eliminate the hazard or reduce the risk. Implement the controls allocating responsibility to person/s and giving time frames. All sections of the Incident / Hazard Report must be faxed to the OH&S Consultant.
Establish a workplace OHS committee. Have meetings, workshops, surveys and suggestion boxes to ensure open communication between committee and employees. Provide general OHS information such as laws & legislation and their implication to the studio. Make sure all input from employees is valued. Ensure management shows strong commitment to OHS committee. Involve employees in all OHS procedures i.e. Identifying hazards and developing control strategies.
Have an Emergency Management Plan (EMP) in place, such as the one below:
Make written information regarding emergency procedures available to all staff. Provide regular evacuation training. Suitably trained personnel should be nominated to act in specific roles in the case of an emergency i.e. Fire warden, first aid officer(s). Example of emergency procedurein case of fire. This is the type ofwritten information/signagewhich should be made available:
EMPLOYER: WORKER: Provide and maintain safe All workers have a duty of equipment and systems of care to ensure that they work work. in a manner that is not Implement arrangements for harmful to their own health the safe use of chemicals. and safety and the health Maintain the workplace in a and safety of others. safe condition. You must notify your Provide workers and employer of any injury or contractors with adequate illness within 30 days of you facilities. becoming aware of it. Make sure workers have adequate information to conduct work in a safe manner.
Adequately monitor your If you need medical workers’ health. treatment or time off work Keep information and because of your injury or records relevant to your illness, you need to make a workers health and safety. claim. Employ or engage people An injured worker can be with the necessary represented, assisted and qualifications or expertise to supported in the return to advise you on health & safety work process. affecting your workers. Consult with employees on matters that may directly affect their health, safety or welfare.
Safe Work Australia: http://www.safeworkaustralia.gov.au/sites/SWA/Pages/defau lt.aspx Heads of Workplace Safety Authorities: http://www.hwsa.org.au/ National OHS Strategy 2002-2012: http://www.safeworkaustralia.gov.au/sites/SWA/AboutSafe WorkAustralia/WhatWeDo/Publications/Documents/230/N ationalOHSStrategy_2002-2012.pdf OH&S/WHS Acts, Regulations and Codes of Practice: http://www.business.gov.au/BusinessTopics/Occupationalhe althandsafety/Pages/OHandSActsRegulationsandCodesofPra ctice.aspx OH&S Handbook: http://ohshandbook.com.au/