Health and Safety Policy

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What is it?

A Health and Safety Policy is a policy that describes how you will manage health and safety in your business.

A Health and Safety Policy will let your employees and those working at your company know about your commitment to the health and safety of your employees and visitors. It should clearly set out your responsibilities as the employer and business owner. The policy should also set out the employee's responsibilities for workplace health and safety.

Why do you need it?

As a responsible employer, it is important to have in place clear workplace health and safety regulations to protect employees from themselves, each other, and their surroundings.

Workplaces need a Health and Safety Policy to clearly demonstrate that health and safety is an integral part of work processes and activities. The policy outlines the employer's or employee's accountability and responsibility for workplace health and safety and sets out safe practices and procedures to be followed to prevent workplace injuries and illnesses. It is good practice to record all of these details in the Health and Safety Policy.

The policy must also set out the employer's commitment to reduce risks and observe legal duties relevant to the workplace and its business. It will also set out what the employee's duties are in relation to health and safety and how they can meet these obligations.

Key clauses to watch for:

When drafting a Health and Safety Policy, it is important to focus on a number of key clauses, in particular:

  • Why the Health and Safety Policy has been created and who it is for;
  • Whether the employer has appointed a Principal Health and Safety Officer and the contact details of this individual;
  • The responsibilities of the employer;
  • The responsibilities of the employee;
  • Attendance requirements at health and safety training workshops;
  • Whether the employer has appointed an individual with day-to-day responsibility for health and safety matters and the contact details of this individual;
  • Emergency evacuation procedures; and
  • What to do if employees do not comply with the Health and Safety Policy.

Health and Safety Policy Document