University of Chicago
Type of paper: Thesis/Dissertation Chapter
Ensure work safety
I have read and analyze the current policies and procedures of Coffeeville on work health and safety. I compared them with WHS acts, regulations and codes of practice and developed WHS guidelines for following areas. These guidelines will help employer to control the workplace risks. These guidelines will not only improve safety outcomes but will also support employer in demonstrating that they are meeting obligations under Work Health and Safety laws.
WHS Guidelines for respective areas
1. Organizational commitment to locate, adapt, adopt and communicate work health and safety policies in order to be compliant with WHS legislation
Store managers and senior leadership have to be committed to ensure WHS management system I functioning properly. They are responsible that all staff members are exercising the WHS procedures. Managers have the responsibility of reviewing the Risk Action Plan on a monthly basis.Leaders of the entire workplace are required to follow the requirements of WHS legislation by communicating to the workforce of its requirements and ongoing changes to adopt and adapt the WHS policies. A proper training of WHS policies and procedure is to be delivered to new employees at time of recruitment. Regular communication and consultation between management and employees is required time to time to maintain health and safety at workplace as per required under WHS legislation.
During WHS consultation or meeting all WHS policies and procedures has to be given in writing to workforce. Also suggestions should be asked from employees to make them contribute towards maintaining the workplace safe, risk free and quality decision making. All staff members are told and trained to fill risk and hazard report forms. Teams are to be made to assess risks and hazards at workplace and submit report with suggestions to avoid those risks. All the information such as the hazard inspection reports, minutes of OHS Committee meetings, group meetings, suggestions, circulars or other OHS information should be provided to staff via e-mail, newsletters or handover printout.
Accurately explain relevant provisions of WHS Policy, legislation and codes of practice to staff. Systematically WHS training needs of employees in line with organizational requirements, online employee health and safety program, provide workplace learning opportunities, safety manuals and put clear safety signage. Ensuring the distribution of work health and safety policies and procedures on a range of topics to each division or group, setting up processes to ensure consultation can occur between the national body and state and local groups or divisions.
2. WHS responsibilities for duty holders
The Work Health and Safety Policy clearly defines the rights and responsibilities of duty holders. All duty holders have to comply with company policies and procedures. Do not use any faulty equipment, do not misuse any of equipment or never use anything without training if needed, wear proper PPE and report any WHS issues, including hazards, injuries, illnesses and near misses.
3. Human resources and financial commitment for an effective work health and safety management system
Human resource department should assigned Health and Safety representative, first aid attendant, fire attendant, health and safety committee to be formed and HR has to make sure of proper training. It is job of HR to provide financial and physical resources to enable the effective implementation of the Workplace Health and Safety. These financial resources must be provided in budget allocation to the Workplace Health and Safety team.
4. How to set up a consultation and participative arrangements according to relevant WHS legislation
Part 5 of the WHS Act 2011 (the Act) requires PCBUs to consult with workers about WHS matters that affect their workplace health or safety. As workers now includes all people completing work for the PCBU this includes consultation with employees, contractors, sub-contractors, volunteers, labour-hire workers and any other person completing work for the PCBU. Prior to consulting with workers, PCBUs and workers must initially determine “work groups”. A “work group” is a group of workers with similar WHS concerns and work conditions. A work group may cover multiple locations but include similar job activities or a work group may cover a range of job types in a single location. Workers can be represented in the negotiation and determination of a workgroup by their union Once work groups are determined then each work group can determine the best method for WHS consultation. The options for WHS consultation include;
i. Health and Safety Representatives (HSRs)
ii. Health and Safety Committees (HSCs)
iii. Other agreed arrangements(meetings)
5. How to record and communicate outcomes of consultation over WHS issues and how quickly to provide information about the outcomes of participation and consultation to work teams
All consultations over WHS issues and their outcomes are to be recorded using standard templates and document control processes like minute taking if it’s a regular meeting. These documents can be maintained on the Workplace Health and Safety section of company website as examples or case studies. Work teams can be notified with workers newsletter, notice in staff room and staff can also be notified about changes by email to relevant work teams and stakeholders. Policies should to be reviewed regularly in consultation with work teams and relevant stakeholders. All policies should to be authorized by the senior management and their issue date recorded on the relevant document.
6. The process for identifying hazards across the organization including the stages of hazard identification and procedures used to ensure new proposed changes do not create any new hazards
To identify hazards the following procedures are recommended: (i) Talk with workers (including contractors) who are or will be performing any tasks to identify all potential hazards and the best ways to eliminate or reduce risk as workers have encountered hazards near misses they as part of their work. We can ask workers to participate in surveys and questionnaire can be given to them to find out more about workplace hazards. (ii) Past incidents/accidents have to be examined to find out what was wrong, why that has happened and whether the incident/accident could occur again. (iii) All faulty appliances are to be reported to relevant sections of company so that they can be fixed or replaced as soon as possible. Proper training should be provided prior of using any machinery or power tools.
All faulty machinery is tagged with faulty or do not use signs. (iv) Regular inspections or checks of workplaces are necessary to eradicate hazards and minimize risks. Regular assessment leads to new ideas of making workplace safer for staff. Brainstorming is required before implementing any new policies or any other changes to avoid any new hazards and before implementing on new policies a trial run is necessary.
7. The process of analyzing risks and ranking them and control procedures to treat risks It is necessary to assess and analyze the risk. Risk assessment determines severity of risk, review of existing risk control measures, action required to avoid or control risks and urgency of action required. Risk assessment involves considering the possible results of someone being exposed to a hazard and the likelihood of this occurring. level of risk = consequence x likelihood
Some steps of risk assessment and procedures to treat risks are as followed
Identify the hazards
i. Walk around your workplace and look at what could reasonably be expected to cause harm. ii. Ask your employees or their representatives what they think. They may have noticed things that are not immediately obvious to you. iii. Check manufacturers’ instructions or data sheets for chemicals and equipment. iv. Remember to think about long-term hazards to health
Decide who might be harmed and how
i. some workers have particular requirements, eg new and young workers, migrant workers ii. Cleaners, visitors, contractors, maintenance workers etc. who may not be in the workplace all the time, members of the public, if they could be hurt by your activities.
Evaluate the risks and decide on precaution
i. try a less risky option
ii. prevent access to the hazard
iii. organize work to reduce exposure to the hazard
iv. issue personal protective equipment and provide welfare facilities (e.g. first aid and washing facilities for removal of contamination).
Record your findings and implement them
i. a proper check was made;
ii. you asked who might be affected;
iii. you dealt with all the obvious significant hazards, taking into account the number of people who could be involved; iv. the precautions are reasonable, and the remaining risk is low; and v. Involve your staff or their representatives in the process.
A good plan of action often includes a mixture of different things such as: A few cheap or easy improvements that can be done quickly, perhaps as a temporary solution until more reliable controls are in place Long-term solutions to those risks most likely to cause accidents or ill health; long-term solutions to those risks with worse potential consequences; Arrangements for training employees on the main risks that remain and how they are to be controlled; Regular checks to make sure that the control measures stay in place; and Clear responsibilities – who will lead on what action and by when? Review your assessment and update if necessary
Few workplaces stay the same. Sooner or later, you will bring in new equipment, substances and procedures that could lead to new hazards. It makes sense therefore, to review what you are doing on an ongoing basis.
Look at your risk assessment and think about whether there have been any changes? Are there improvements you still need to make? Have your workers spotted a problem? Have you learnt anything from accidents or near misses? Make sure your risk assessment stays up to date. 8. The procedures for maintaining an effective work health and safety management system These procedures are required so that safe and healthy environment can be provided to workers. It is about setting up a system or standard procedures to be made to follow in different situations regarding WHS. It involves planning and identification of hazards, hazard/risk assessment and control of hazards/risk.
The Workplace Health and Safety team has identified the health and safety legal requirements applicable to Coffeeville e.g. legislation, Codes of Practice and Australian Standards, and maintains a library for access by all staff. Objectives and targets are to be set for regarding workplace, health and safety. There must be some guidelines set to implement these procedures. Finance and physical resources to enable the effective implementation of the Workplace Health and Safety Management System. These resources are provided for in the provision of the budget allocation to the Workplace Health and Safety team and the overall budget of the individual work units. The Work Health and Safety Policy clearly defines, documents and communicates the responsibilities and accountabilities of Senior management executives, Managers and Supervisors, Employees and Contractors and Subcontractors. Coffeeville in consultation with employees identifies training needs in relation to performing work activities competently, including health and safety training.
Consultation between management and employees is an essential part of effectively managing health and safety in the workplace. Management must consult with employees so that they contribute to decisions about the implementation of safety practices. A communication network is necessary in order to provide safety and welfare information to staff, contractors and visitors through the following media like WHS website, targeted correspondence and emails to employees and stakeholders, safety manuals, signage and safe work procedures.
Coffeeville measures and reports its health and safety performance on a regular basis via WHS inspections, and incident, accident and hazard reports. The Workplace Health and Safety team prepares an annual report for the Coffeeville Executive and Council on the management of health and safety. The report provides the necessary information on the performance of the WHSMS to enable review of the WHSMS on an ongoing basis, ensuring that the systems in place continue to meet the needs of the company.
9. What expert WHS advice to be used
It is necessary to employ or engage a suitably qualified person under WHS legislation to advice on issues impacting the health and safety of your employees. Consultant can be hired if there is no suitable person with required skills and knowledge at within organisation or someone from workplace is to be provided with proper training to perform the job. A consultant or qualified can give you advice on:
establishing, maintaining or improving safe systems of work
identifying, eliminating or controlling workplace hazards
actions to eliminate or reduce the risk of a worker being injured Taking samples or measurements of workplace environments (eg air samples, noise readings or ergonomic assessments). Can give advice to review and revival of company’s WHS policy 10. The requirements for strict compliance with WHS legislative framework to meet legal requirements WHS policies and procedures of company must be designed under the guidelines given in Work Health and Safety Act 2011(WHS Act) and Work Health and Safety Regulations 2011(WHS Regulations). The WHS Act provides a framework to protect the health, safety and welfare of all workers at work and of other people who might be affected by the work.
Duty of an organization includes ensuring, so far as is reasonably practicable: provision and maintenance of a work environment without risks to health and safety provision and maintenance of safe plant and structures and safe systems of work safe use, handling and storage of plant, structures and substances provision of adequate facilities for the welfare at work of workers, including volunteers, for example toilets, first aid facilities, and provision of information, training and instruction or supervision that is necessary to protect all persons from risks to their health and safety arising from their work.