The theme for the 2018 World Day for Safety and Health at Work is ‘Generation health and safety.’ On April 28th, we recognise the critical importance of safety at work and this year the focus is on highlighting the importance of improving safety and health for young workers and generations to come.
The 541million young workers (15-24 years old) in Australia, account for more than 15% of the worlds labour force and suffer up to a 40% higher rate of non-fatal occupational injuries than adult workers. Young workers are vulnerable to risks due to the physical and psychological development stage, lack of experience and lack of bargaining power which leads to them accepting dangerous tasks. It’s time to stand up for young workers by creating a safe workplace to assist in their learning.
So how can an organisation assist their young and vulnerable workers?
In the lead up to this event, we have four valuable tips on supporting the young generation of workers.
Tip 1: Offer appropriate training and guidance
Training and qualification requirements vary depending on what industry you operate in. Training may be as simple as a tour of the office and introduction to policies and procedures of work, but if your workplace is, for example a construction site, various high level qualifications and appropriate training is needed to comply with WHS standards. When hiring new employees, always record required qualifications and licences and keep track of the expiry dates. For some young workers, it could be their first time in a proper workplace and therefore they need to be educated on the required training levels.
Tip 2: Show young workers where to find policies and procedures
Entering the workforce at a young age can be daunting and overwhelming. Young workers are not going to dig through the filing cabinet to find the policies and procedures, so if they are not shown where to find the documents, they will never read them, it’s as simple as that. This can become dangerous for both the worker and employer. Employers can be fined or sued for large amounts of money due to negligent care and workers can encounter serious injuries that could have been avoided if they simply knew where to find safety information.
We have two more awesome tips coming, so stay tuned!
We can all do our part to create safe and healthy workplaces for our future generations. If you don’t know where to start or you just need a little guidance, email us at firstname.lastname@example.org or give us a call on (02)9521 3410.