Updated Protection Guide for Workplace Bullying

safework australia

Source: www.safeworkaustralia.gov.au

Safe Work Australia recently updated2 publications on workplace bullying, to help address the problem of bullying which is rife in the workplace.

The revised guide aims to provide greater guidance for managers and advice for workers pertaining to bullying.

The guide includes information for employers and managers on preventing workplace bullying and responding to it in the workplace.

It also includes a worker’s guide providing them advice if they are being bullied, have witnessed bullying or have been the bully themselves.

Find out more at http://www.safeworkaustralia.gov.au/sites/swa/news/pages/tn-01092016-bullying-guide-updates



Mental Health In The Workplace

roof plumb

Source: roofplumber3.blogspot.com

The mental health of your workers should always be a priority, even as much as you prioritise their physical health and safety. If this were being done, suicide wouldn’t be as great a concern in the construction industry as it is.

One in five Australian workers suffer from mental health issues at some time in their lives and the competitive working environment we function in doesn’t help. Other issues such as bullying and discrimination only increase the problem.

According to HeadsUp, there are key indicators of a healthy workplace and their are factors that contribute to an unhealthy work environment mentally. To learn more about them go to http://content.safetyculture.com.au/news/index.php/12/indicators-mentally-healthy-workplace/#.VoHGnPl97IV



Address the Activities that Cause You the Most Stress

cons work

Work is the number one cause of stress.

Interestingly  high penalties for mistakes and a lack of a challenge are 2 of the reasons why work stresses us out.

Workers in the construction industry typically suffer from a high amount of stress and with the fact that a mistake can be deadly on a construction site, it’s no wonder why.

Find out what the other stressors in our lives are.


Investing in your Employees Mental Health

Employers should never underestimate the value of investing in their employees’ health and safety. Many companies recognise the importance of physical health and safety but neglect workers mental health and wellbeing. Now there is a new landmark campaign that aims to tackle this issue.

The campaign launched by Beyondblue aims to make workplaces more mentally healthy by encouraging employers to be more proactive in tackling mental health issues.

A recent PWC report indicated that Australian businesses will receive an average return of $2.30 for every $1 they invest in an effective workplace mental health strategy. In other words investing in worker’s mental health will translate into a financial return for those companies wise enough to do so.

The campaign by Beyondblue has been launched in conjunction with the Mentally Healthy Workplace Alliance.

The following excerpt from a post on SafetyCulture.com.au explains more:

beyondblue.jpeg.pagespeed.ce.zp_Im9m_imChairman The Hon. Jeff Kennett AC said the report provides a compelling case for businesses to back a campaign called Heads Up which will give businesses practical advice on the importance  of mental health in workplaces.

“This report shows that employers have a responsibility not only to their workers, but also to their businesses’ profitability, to tackle these conditions at work. Heads Up will provide them with a tailor-made Action Plan to do this and helps ensure that Australia’s 11.5 million workers receive the support they need to be mentally healthy and productive,” he said.

Source: http://content.safetyculture.com.au/news/index.php/05/campaign-promote-mental-health-workplaces-launched/

Later on this year the campaign will also introduce an Action Plan that will facilitate a more customised mental health plan for each workplace, because after all each work site is different and presents its own risks and mental health threats. The post on SafetyCulture.com.au goes on to explain:

In June, an Action Plan will be introduced on Heads Up website to allow businesses to create tailor-made mental health plans to implement in their workplaces to ensure they are progressing towards workplaces that are as mentally healthy as possible.

Source: http://content.safetyculture.com.au/news/index.php/05/campaign-promote-mental-health-workplaces-launched/

Sadly mental health issues are commonly misunderstood and are an often ignored aspect of worker wellbeing, hopefully this campaign will go a long way in enlightening employers on the importance of addressing mental health issues by also highlighting the financial benefits for them of doing so, after all most companies are driven purely by profit and worker safety and wellbeing takes a back seat to profits.

Mentally healthy workplaces deliver higher productivity levels, improve workforce participation and increase social inclusion in addition to improving the company’s bottom line. Seldom do we consider the consequences of ill mental health on individuals, the family unit, the business, communities and the economy, despite the fact that these consequences are far reaching and profound, obviously warranting greater attention, especially from employers and co-workers, let’s hope this campaign will help in changing this relaxed attitude toward worker mental health.

Equally important as worker mental health is physical health and wellbeing. Much of a worker’s physical wellbeing is dependent upon their own actions but it is also affected by the actions of other workers in site. It is for this reason that general construction safety training is such a crucial requirement.


APS launches new website promoting mental health and wellbeing at Work

Help for managers, supervisors and employers who are grappling with staff mental health issues have now been provided with some aid on behalf of The Australian Public Service.

Interestingly a recent report by Safe Work Australia confirmed the suspicions of many, that stress is the biggest negative impact on workers in Oz and mental health is becoming an increasing problem in workplaces.

Despite this fact an aspect of occupational health and safety that is commonly ignored is mental health of workers, that is why Safe Work Australia conducted a report dedicated solely to work-related mental stress.

As Safe Work Australia explained work-related mental stress has become a major concern in workplaces across Oz, this is evident by the increasing costs associated with time off work such as claims by workers which are costing the economy millions. So it is a welcomed guide that has been provided by the APS to assist employers to promote mental health and wellbeing in workplaces.

The guide is a combined effort between Comcare and the APS and attempts to encourage a culture of positivity towards mental health in the workplace. Often employers and co-workers aren’t equipped to handle mental health issues about workers and that is where this guide aims to help.

According to the APS, healthy workplaces deliver greater productivity, improve workforce participation and increase social inclusion. It’s important to get this right because the consequences of ill health on individuals, their families, communities and the economy are profound.

The guide follows topics such as creating a respectful workplace, talking about mental health at work, managing risks to prevent harm, recognising when to step in with help and supporting workers returning to work.

This is what the APS had to say about the guide on its website,

The guide is a key initiative of the Australian Public Service Commission’s As One—APS Disability Employment Strategy.

This guide, Working Together: Promoting mental health and wellbeing at work, is a key initiative of As One—APS Disability Employment Strategy. The guide aims to empower managers and employees to work together to build inclusive workplace cultures and effective systems for promoting mental health in the Australian Public Service (APS).

We will all be touched by mental ill health at some stage in our lives and some of us live with a mental health condition. Leaders and managers must build their levels of confidence around mental health issues to better include people with mental ill health in our teams, and to enable appropriate support of employees during illness and recovery.

The guidance in Working Together is of two types—technical (improved processes and procedures, including early intervention) and cultural (attitudinal and behavioural changes, such as understanding and connecting with each other). The former we can implement relatively quickly, but the latter may take time. The success of the guide relies on its adoption. This will require perseverance, courage, commitment and leadership.

Read more: http://www.apsc.gov.au/publications-and-media/current-publications/mental-health

According to the APS, healthy workplaces deliver greater productivity, improve workforce participation and increase social inclusion. It’s important to get this right because the consequences of ill health on individuals, their families, communities and the economy are profound.




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