Psychological Hazards at Work Code of Practice

Psychological Hazards at Work Code of Practice

The Queensland Government has recently introduced a new safety Code of Practice, Managing the Risk of Psychological Hazards at Work Code of Practice, which will have significant impacts on most employers. The Code and Regulations commence on 1 April 2023.

The Code is designed as a practical guide for employers to prevent psychological hazards at work, including both psychological and physical harm.

Psychological hazards are anything in the design or management of work that increases the risk of work-related stress. Exposure to such hazards can have significant impacts, including job burnout, anxiety, depression, irritability, poor concentration, and disturbed sleep patterns.

Common hazards that have been identified include high/low job demands, low job control, poor support, low role clarity, poor organisational change management, low reward and recognition, poor organisational justice (lack of procedural fairness), interpersonal conflict, remote or isolated work, poor environmental conditions, traumatic events and violence and aggression.

The Code imposes a duty on persons conducting a business or undertaking (PCBU) to do what is reasonably practicable to eliminate or minimise risks to psychological health and safety.

This can be achieved using a four-step risk management process:

  1. Identify hazards

  2. Assess risks if necessary

  3. Control risks

  4. Review control measures to ensure they are working as planned.

It has been found that controlling psychological hazards are likely to be most successful when there is visible organisational and management commitment, worker involvement, and organisational communication and consultation regarding the risk management process.

The Code and Regulations cover employers, workers, contractors, subcontractors, outworkers, self-employed, apprentices and trainees, work experience students and volunteers. They also cover other people who may enter a workplace, including customers and visitors.

Managing the risk of psychosocial hazards at work Code of Practice 2022 | WorkSafe.qld.gov.au

Preventing and managing risks to work-related psychological health

For queries about Codes of Practice, safety, or other employment questions, please contact Dean Cameron at Workforce Advisory Lawyers – We Know Employment Law on 0417 622 178, 1300 925 529 or via email to dean.cameron@workforceadvisory.com.au

Disclaimer: This information is provided as general advice on workplace relations and employment law. It does not constitute legal advice, and it is always advisable to seek further information regarding specific workplace issues. Liability limited by a scheme approved under professional standards legislation.

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