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Employer responsibilities


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Employer responsibilities

  1. 1. EMPLOYER RESPONSIBILITIES <br /><ul><li>Provide a safe and healthy workplace, equipment and ways of working and make sure they are maintained properly
  2. 2. Make sure any substances used at work can be used, stored or moved safely
  3. 3. Make sure everyone can get in and out the workplace safely, including an emergency
  4. 4. Give employees the information, training and with risking their health
  5. 5. Supply employees with protective clothing free of charge
  6. 6. Look after the health and safely of visitors
  7. 7. Tell employees about risks and problems linked to the work they do
  8. 8. Not to refuse to help anyone who is ill, injured or in danger
  9. 9. Not to make it difficult for anyone else to help someone who is ill, injured or in danger</li></ul>ROLE OF WORKCOVER<br />Workcovers functions are set out in the Workplace Injury Management and Workers Compensation<br />Act 1998. The changes amend that Act to clearly state Workcovers advisory, prevention, assistance<br />and educational functions and provide a note in the OHS Act to refer to Workcovers functions.<br />Other proposed changes increase Workcovers ability to provide practical assistance to employers<br />and other people with responsibilities under the OHS Act. They provide a specific power for<br />Workcover to provide advice and to issue guidelines on the interpretation of the OHS Act and<br />Regulation.<br />Workcover also have the role of randomly inspecting construction sites and enforcing default notices to workers and worksites to maintain safe practices. <br />CODES OF PRACTICE<br />The code of practice, provides the minimum standards for health and safety, and give people practical guidance on how to meet a particular requirement or standard for health and safety. <br />The code of practice states what the person responsible should do to meet a particular standard of health and safety.<br />The minister responsible for OHS&W approves codes of practice, on the advice of the OHS&W Advisory Committee.<br />Other organisations such as the National OHS&W Committee (NOHSC) publish codes of practice but these are not ‘approved’ unless they have been approved by the minister and gazetted.<br />EMPLOYER DUTY OF CARE<br />Implementing the duty of care principle means planning for the prevention of workplace accidents, injuries and illnesses.There is a general duty of care on employers of the workplace to ensure the health, safety and welfare at work of all employees and others who come on to the workplace. It is the employer’s responsibility to ensure that all reasonably practicable measures have been taken to control risks against all possible injuries arising from the workplace. The employer's duty of care applies to all people in the workplace, including visitors, contractors etc. There is a general obligation on designers, manufacturers and suppliers of plant and substances for use by people at work to ensure that their products are not a risk to health and safety when properly used, and to provide information on the correct use and potential hazards associated with the use of the products in the workplace. There is a general obligation on employees to take care of others and cooperate with employers in matters of health and safety.  An employee must also co-operate with the employer or other person so far as is necessary to enable compliance with the Act and the Occupational Health and Safety Regulation 2001 (section 20, OHS Act 2000). As employers are in control of the workplace and workplaces can have significant risks to health and safety, employers are required to organise their workplace and their work systems to ensure people at work are not put in harm’s way.<br />OHS LAW<br />Aims of OHS Legislation:<br /><ul><li>ensure the health and safety of employees on the construction site
  10. 10. protect visitors to the construction site, such as suppliers or subcontractors
  11. 11. promote a work environment on the construction site that meets the physical and psychological needs of workers
  12. 12. include codes of practice, standards, and joint consultation procedures to improve workplace health and safety
  13. 13. regularly look over the current laws so they can be changed to suit changes in industry
  14. 14. The OHS Act:</li></ul>The main objectives of this Act are to:<br /><ul><li>PROTECT the health, safety and welfare of people at work
  15. 15. ELIMINATE risks to health and safety at their source
  16. 16. PROTECT the public against risks to health and safety caused by people at work</li></ul>The Act sets out the general requirements to protect health and safety at work. It makes clear that everyone who may affect health and safety at work has a role to play in protecting it. This includes employers, employees, their representatives, designers, building owners, manufactures and suppliers. <br />Self-employed people must ensure that they take steps to protect their own health and safety and avoid putting others at risk of both injuries and illness. <br />The Act aims to encourage employees and their representatives (unions), and employers to work together to resolve health and safety issues. <br />Employee involvement is encouraged through legislation for work groups to elect health and safety representatives (HSR) and to participate on health and safety committees (HSC). <br /> <br />