Unfortunately workplace violence accounts for over 9% of Australia’s workers compensation claims. Workplace violence can result in both physical & psychological injuries with the age care industry being more susceptible. Providing workers support and assistance is important in minimising risk and injuries.
Mental health issues are the 3rd most frequent health condition after cancer & health disease. This means supervisors are likely to be managing workers suffering from a mental illness. We have identified common mental health hazards & workplace risk mitigation strategies.
An increasing concern for many businesses are the risks of mental health related incidents, injuries and resulting workers compensation claims. We have covered this topic previously and with psychological claims being 7-8 times more expensive than physical injuries the impacts of being reactive is a risk too large for many businesses.
In Australia, all employers have a responsibility to prevent discrimination, harassment or bullying from occurring in the workplace and to make sure that their employees, and people who apply jobs with them, are treated fairly. Under Work Health and Safety (WHS) legislation, employers and employees are required to comply with practices and behaviour that promote health and safety in the workplace. Because of this responsibility, employers are required to minimise or if possible eliminate the risks to employees’ health and safety caused by workplace bullying. Safe Work Australia has recently updated two publications on workplace bullying to provide guidance and assistance for managers and workers on how to prevent, respond and deal with this issue.
Occupational violence is an incident where a worker is physically attacked in the workplace or during work related activities. It also extends to if a worker is threatened in a way that causes them to reasonably believe they are in danger of being physically attacked. With an ageing population, ensuring aged and other care workers are able to cope with the at times aggressive behaviour associated with some types of dementia or disabilities is an important issue for care providers. Recent data shows care workers represent more than 9 percent of NSW workers compensation claims with over 12,000 physical and mental claims made in the recent 3 year period. Addressing workplace bullying and violence be challenging yet SafeWork Australia provide recommendations.