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Work Health & Safety (WHS)

Ensuring good work health and safety practices for your workplace

Maintaining a safe workplace protects your workers and your productivity.

As a business owner, you have a legal responsibility to ensure your workers are safe - physically and mentally - in your workplace. That means protecting them from physical health risks like slippery floors or hazardous materials, and mental health risks like bullying or harassment.

Work Health and Safety (WHS) is about placing safety at the centre of your policies and actions and should be included in your business planning and decision-making.

Your safety responsibilities extend to everyone in your workplace – employees, including apprentices and trainees, contractors, work experience students and volunteers, customers, suppliers and other visitors. They also have a responsibility to take reasonable care of their own and other people’s health and safety while they’re in your workplace.

When you demonstrate a commitment to workers' health and safety, you help to build a positive workplace culture and set an example for your workers to follow.

Establishing and maintaining good work health and safety practices can have many benefits for your business and there’s support to help you.

Advice and information

  • SafeWorkSA oversees Work Health and Safety (WHS) in South Australia and provides information and advice to help local small businesses establish safe and healthy workplaces.
  • Free advice and information are available from the SafeWorkSA advisory service. An advisor can visit your business for a free consultation to assess your WHS approach and provide practical support and advice if improvements are required.

Simple steps to ensuring safety in your workplace

  1. Get started by defining you and your workers’ responsibilities and allocate resources.
  2. Consult with your workers – they can identify risks and solutions.
  3. Manage hazards – identify risks, take action to manage them and develop simple and safe work procedures.
  4. Provide information, training and induction for your workers
  5. Maintain your safe workplace through:
    - regular safety checks
    - keep tools and equipment in safe working order
    - use hazard, near miss and injury reporting processes
    - plan and test for emergencies.
  6. Keep records – document your efforts to maintain and improve your WHS.
  7. Monitor, review and improve your safety policies and approach.

Find resources and information about health and wellbeing that can help keep you and your workers safe.

More resources and support

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