Working together to protect workers’ mental health
Working in a safe environment is essential for everyone's wellbeing, and mental health is no exception. A healthy and safe workplace provides structure and purpose, a sense of identity, and opportunities to develop skills and increased feelings of self-worth.
We all have a role to play in supporting mentally healthy workplaces. Everyone has an obligation in the workplace to:
- comply with reasonable health and safety instructions
- take reasonable care of their own psychological and physical health and safety
- take reasonable care that their actions do not adversely affect the health and safety of other persons.
- co-operate with any reasonable policy or procedure relating to health and safety.
Psychosocial hazards are aspects of work which have the potential to cause psychological harm, whether or not it may also cause physical harm. These can include, but are not limited to, bullying, job demands, poor support, remote and isolated work and poor organisational change management.
To learn more, access Safe Work Australia's Model Code of Practice on managing psychosocial hazards at work.
Officers under the Work Health and Safety Act 2011 (WHS Act), have a duty to create systematic approaches to the prevention and management of hazards in the workplace. This is known as ‘due diligence’ which includes taking reasonable steps to undertake the following actions.
- Acquire and update knowledge of health and safety matters
- Understand operations and associated hazards and risks
- Ensure appropriate resources and processes are in place to eliminate or minimise risks
- Ensure appropriate processes are in place to receive and respond promptly to information regarding incidents, hazards and risks
- Ensure processes are in place and are used for complying with duties and obligations under the WHS Act, such as consultation.
Guidance, resources and tools are available to help you foster mentally healthy workplaces.