Safe Work Australia’s report on employers’ beliefs regarding how well they manage work health and safety in their workplace reveals that managers, particularly in small business, need support to help them improve work health and safety compliance.
“The report examines how employers perceive their own approach to safety in an organisation,” explained Dr Sophie Lindquist.
“In particular, we look at issues of empowerment and justice – how Australian employers believe they empower their workers to influence health and safety, and whether employers believe they deal with health and safety incidents fairly and justly.”
Overall, most employers perceived that they managed health and safety empowerment and justice well and frequently in their businesses.
However, up to one-quarter of employers indicated they did not frequently empower their workers through active consultation around safety and did not always treat their workers justly, especially when investigating accidents.
“Small businesses in particular are less likely to perceive they displayed health and safety empowerment and justice frequently in their workplace,” said Dr Lindquist.
Safe Work Australia CEO Michelle Baxter said that small businesses account for more than 95 per cent of all Australian businesses and are responsible for the health and safety of approximately 4.8 million workers.
“State and territory work health and safety regulators all have a range of resources to assist small business owners, including free advisory services, information sessions, rebates, fact sheets and tools,” said Ms Baxter.
“Any small business looking for help with their health and safety obligations can contact their local regulator to discuss practical approaches to improving their safety practices.”
Find your local regulator’s contact information.
This report summarises findings from the Perceptions of Work Health and Safety Survey 2012 in terms of Australian employers’ perceptions of how well they manage work health and safety in their businesses.