Go to top of page

Work health and safety

PM&C continued its commitment to promoting and sustaining a safe and healthy workplace—one that values inclusion and ensures a healthy, resilient and capable workforce.

The Secretary signed our Workplace Health and Safety Commitment statement on 25 November 2019. The statement reaffirmed the executive’s commitment to providing strong visible leadership to embed and sustain a robust safety and wellbeing culture that enables safe and healthy workplaces.

In 2019–20, a key focus was to review and update existing arrangements, policies and procedures for work health and safety (WHS) and wellbeing to align them with the structure, composition and organisational priorities of PM&C. Initiatives undertaken to support this included:

  • consulting on a revised workgroup structure to better support more productive and local communications and consultation with staff representatives on WHS matters
  • revising the Due Diligence Framework and Manual, supported by both face-to-face and online training
  • conducting an internal audit of the WHS management system stages 1 and 2 to determine its compliance against AS/NZS ISO 45001:2018
  • launching and implementing the Wellbeing Strategy to increase manager capability in managing staff with a mental health challenge, promote staff accountability for their own and their peers’ wellbeing and strengthen mental health literacy across PM&C
  • reviewing and updating the Health, Safety and Wellbeing Committee, including revised Terms of Reference and changed membership to reflect the current organisational structure
  • delivering campaigns to increase staff awareness and participation in workplace health, safety and wellbeing initiatives, including National Safe Work Month and Mental Health Awareness Week.

An unexpected major focus for 2019–20 was our response to the COVID-19 pandemic and air quality issues from the 2019–2020 bushfire crisis. It included:

  • working with key internal and external stakeholders to ensure prompt communication and implementation of advice issued by the Department of Health
  • developing resources to support managers and staff in response to national and international crises
  • designing and implementing working from home guidance and a supporting checklist to enable staff to set up a safe workspace while working remotely
  • undertaking risk assessments for working from home, ensuring staff safety in the common areas of the buildings and returning to the office to ensure that all hazards were identified and risks mitigated
  • continuing to implement measures to support the physical and mental health of staff during a dynamic and rapidly changing period of time.

One dangerous incident was mandatorily notified to Comcare in 2019–20.