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Your worker's mental health is your concern

Get up to speed with the Work Health & Safety Amendment Regulation 2022 that took affect 1st October 2022.

Content based on Safe Work Australia Code of Practice: Managing psychosocial hazards at work. July 2022.

Your workers mental health is your concern
Your workers mental health is your concern

1 What is a psychosocial hazard?

Psychosocial hazards is anything that can cause psychological and physical harm.

A definition of psychosocial hazards has been added to the regulations. It says:

Psychosocial hazards:

  • arise from or in relation to:

    • the design or management of work

    • the working environment

    • machinery, equipment, appliances, containers, implements and tools, any part of those things or anything fitted or connected to those things at a workplace, or

    • workplace interactions or behaviours; and

  • may cause psychological and physical harm.

2 Why does it matter?

Typically, work-related psychological injuries have:

  • longer recovery times,

  • higher costs, and

  • require more time away from work.

Managing the risks associated with psychosocial hazards can:

  • protect workers

  • decrease disruption associated with staff turnover and absenteeism, and

  • improve your company's overall productivity.

Psychosocial hazards
Psychosocial hazards

Examples of psychological harm or injuries from psychosocial hazards include:

  • anxiety,

  • depression,

  • post-traumatic stress disorder, and

  • sleep disorders.

Examples of physical injuries from psychosocial hazards include:

  • musculoskeletal injury,

  • chronic disease, and

  • physical injury following fatigue-related workplace incidents.

3 A PCBU MUST manage psychosocial hazards

A PCBU must implement control measures to ELIMINATE and/or MINIMISE these risks.

A PCBU must consider:

  • the duration, frequency and severity of the exposure of workers and other persons to the psychosocial hazards

  • how the psychosocial hazards may interact or combine

  • the design of work, including job demands and tasks

  • the systems of work, including how work is managed, organised and supported

  • the design and layout, and environmental conditions, of the workplace, including the provision of:

    • safe means of entering and exiting the workplace

    • facilities for the welfare of workers - the design and layout and environmental conditions of workers’ accommodation

  • the plant, substances and structures at the workplace

  • workplace interactions or behaviours, and

  • the information, training, instruction and supervision provided to workers.

4 How to manage psychosocial risks

Apply the risk management process described in the Code of Practice: How to manage work health and safety risks.

People at Work is a free and validated Australian psychosocial risk assessment survey. The survey assesses a number of the most common psychosocial hazards and factors.

How to manage WHS
How to manage WHS


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