WHS Policy Template

Background

{Company.Name} (“the Company”) is committed to ensuring a safe and healthy working environment for all workers, contractors and visitors and anyone else who may be affected by the Company’s operations. It aims to be proactive in preventing workplace incidents and ensure all work activities are done safely.

Both workers and Management have a responsibility to themselves and each other to ensure, where it is reasonably practicable, that both the place of work and the Company’s work practices are safe. As such, the Company encourages and seeks to facilitate open communication between workers and Management to ensure work health and safety.

This Work Health and Safety (“WHS”) Policy applies to all workers, including Management, any independent contractor or independent contractor’s workers.
Nothing in this policy requires the Company to manage its work health and safety systems in a particular way. The Company reserves the right to adopt a different process to that set out in this policy.

The Company’s Responsibilities

As an employer, the Company aims to:

  • provide and maintain, so far as is reasonably practicable, work environments (including equipment and systems of work) that are safe and without risk to health;
  • provide adequate facilities for the welfare of workers and other persons at work;
  • provide such information, instruction, training and supervision as is necessary to
  • protect all persons from any risks to their health and safety arising from the conduct of the Company’s business;
  • monitor the health of workers and workplace conditions in order to prevent illness and injury arising from the conduct of the Company’s business;
  • liaise with senior management on a regular basis on any matters concerning work health and safety;
  • consult with workers on matters of health and safety, directly with workers and
  • through any Health and Safety Representatives; and
  • facilitate and support the work of the WHS Committee/Compliance Committee.

The Role of Managers and Supervisors

In regards to work health and safety, managers and supervisors (whatever their title) of the Company are key players in fulfilling the Company’s aim to reduce and remove any risks to safety of its workers. Managers and supervisors are in a position to monitor workplace conditions, help ensure that workers are supervised and appropriately trained, and to identify issues which may need to be actioned, including those raised by workers in their work area.

How workers contribute to work health and safety

Under work health and safety legislation, all workers have a duty to take reasonable care for their own health and safety and that of other people; and to comply with reasonable WHS directions, policies and procedures at work. All workers are required to comply with this WHS Policy and any WHS procedures and programs implemented within the Company to help ensure their own health and safety and the health and safety of other persons. As such, all workers are required to escalate any risks that they identify to the relevant manager or HR representative.

In order to take reasonable care for their own health and safety and that of others, workers are encouraged to:
ask questions regarding any work health and safety issues they may have;
raise safety concerns with their manager and/or any Health and Safety Representative;
make safety recommendations and assist in the risk/hazard identification and resolution process set out in this WHS Policy; and
report any injury, inappropriate behaviour, or ‘near miss’ incidents immediately to their manager.

In terms of day to day conduct in the workplace, workers should:

  • familiarise themselves with this WHS policy;
  • use all workplace furniture, equipment and plant in an appropriate manner;
  • organise their working environment in a manner which does not pose a risk to their own or their colleagues’ health and safety;
  • ensure that shelving or other space saving devices are not overloaded or unstable;
  • ensure that visitors to the Company’s premises are aware of the need to observe the
  • Company’s requirements in relation to safety, and ensure that other workers on site are aware that visitors are present on site;
  • actively identify and report any hazards or risks to health and safety (for example, worn out or exposed electrical cords or defective equipment) in accordance with this WHS Policy; and
  • refrain from wilfully or recklessly interfering with any equipment or safety measures so as to create a workplace hazard (including by not participating in potentially harmful office “pranks”, of either a physical or psychological nature).

Emergency Evacuation Procedure

In the event of an emergency in or around the Company’s office, workers will be given appropriate instruction. If an evacuation is announced, all workers are to leave the building immediately by following the exit signs and assemble in accordance with the building’s evacuation plan. Details of the evacuation procedure and exit signs are located at various points around the building. Workers should familiarise themselves with the location of the emergency exits and evacuation procedure.

Reporting Accidents and Injuries

All accidents, injuries and ‘near misses’, whether occurring at work or whilst travelling to and from work, must be reported immediately to the worker’s manager (or if that person is not available, to another person with management responsibilities) or complete the relevant Incident Report Form. A copy of this form is attached. A worker should report all incidents, including those that are considered as a ‘near miss’ or circumstances that could have resulted in harm.

Appropriate paperwork will be prepared by the Company for completion by the relevant worker(s), to ensure that all accidents, ‘near misses’ and other incidents are appropriately actioned.

Hazard and Risk Identification and Resolution

Workers should report any hazards or risks that they identify to their manager as soon as possible after such hazard or risk is identified, no matter how small or insignificant it may seem.

Where appropriate, a meeting will be held between a member of the Company’s Management team, the worker reporting any hazards or risks, and any other interested parties to discuss the risk or hazard.

As is required, the Company will take steps to resolve any hazard or risk identified by the worker. In determining the appropriate steps to take, the Company may consider the following where appropriate:

  • the degree and immediacy of risk to workers or other persons affected by the issue,
  • the number and location of persons affected by the risk or hazard;
  • whether temporary measures to abate the risk or hazard are appropriate or desirable;
  • whether environmental monitoring is desirable;
  • the time that may elapse before the hazard or risk is permanently corrected; and
  • who to assign responsibility for overseeing and performing the removal of the hazard or risk.

As soon as possible after the resolution of the matter, where deemed necessary, details of the matter and its manner of resolution:

  • will be brought to the attention of relevant workers and contractors and/or any Health and Safety Representatives where applicable; and
  • may be forwarded by the parties to any relevant organisation required to be notified pursuant to work health and safety laws.

Where a worker or group of workers are exposed to a serious or unavoidable danger, the Company may direct that the worker(s) cease work. During any period of cessation of a worker’s standard work for health and safety reasons, the Company may, but is not bound to, assign the worker to a suitable alternative project or work.

Workers’ Compensation and Injury Management

Any person who sustains an injury requiring medical attention and/or time off must complete the necessary Claim for Workers Compensation forms and obtain a worker’s compensation medical certificate from the treating doctor. All injuries must be notified to the appropriate manager as soon as possible.

Together with the Company’s insurance company and the worker’s treating doctor, the Company will coordinate a suitable return-to-work plan for any worker who requires it.

WHS Policy Template

This free Australian Workplace Health & Safety policy will outline your organisation’s WHS policies to help keep employees safe and help prevent your organisation from compliance and liability issues.

By downloading this template, you agree to use it at your own risk and under your own legal advice. Nothing on this site should be considered legal advice.