The NCA is committed to providing a safe working environment, minimising any potential workplace health and safety (WHS) risks, and facilitating work-life balance for employees.
During 2019-20, the NCA completed a major redevelopment and upgrade of our WHS arrangements across the NCA’s operations. The program of work included implementing a comprehensive review and upgrade of our policy, process and procedural documentation and the introduction of a new cloud-based Workplace Health and Safety system. The new system includes a number of active WHS measures for staff, contractors and volunteers to identify, record and report hazards and issues. The new system also allows members of the public to report issues across the National Capital Estate. The program of work was completed and implemented during 2019-20.
The new WHS system has resulted in more detailed reporting including of hazards and ‘near-misses’, which enable issues to be addressed in a timely way. Most issues reported involved first-aid or medical treatment injuries by members of the public on the National Estate.
Hazardous materials surveys were undertaken during 2019-20 to assist in the management of all hazardous materials across the National Estate. This project resulted in the identification and removal of some hazardous materials in poor condition where exposure was assessed as a high risk. It also enabled the development and upgrading of all hazardous materials management plans and risk assessments for all National Estate precincts.
The NCA further developed a strong WHS awareness culture in light of the evolving COVID-19 pandemic. Compliance activities to support Commonwealth and Territory requirements and restrictions were in place and actively monitored.
In March 2020, the NCA provided free influenza vaccinations for NCA staff and volunteers. NCA employees and their family members continue to be provided with access to an Employee Assistance Program, a service that provides free, confidential counselling and guidance.
To ensure assistance is available when needed, the NCA has appropriately trained staff undertaking additional duties including:
- First Aid Officers;
- Harassment Contact Officers;
- Health and Safety Representatives; and
- Fire Wardens.
There were no notifications to Comcare of an injury or dangerous incident during 2019-20 involving NCA staff.