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Occupational Health and Safety Policy

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Section 1 - Purpose

(1) The purpose of this policy is to demonstrate the strong commitment of Melbourne Polytechnic to provide and maintain a working environment that is safe and without risks to health. 

(2) This commitment is based on the belief that all occupational injuries/illnesses can and must be prevented.

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Section 2 - Policy Statement

(3) Melbourne Polytechnic commits to (the):

  1. provision and maintenance of plant and systems of work that promote safety and minimise risks to health and welcomes employee input into safety systems;
  2. provision of systems which maximise safety in connection with the use, handling, storage and transport of plant and substances;
  3. maintenance of all institute sites to a standard which maximises safety and minimises risks to health;
  4. provision of adequate facilities for the welfare of employees at any institute site;
  5. provision of such information, instruction, training and supervision of employees as are necessary to enable employees to perform their work in a manner that is safe and without risks to health;
  6. ensuring that institute health and safety systems are continuously monitored, improved and regularly audited.
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Section 3 - Principles

(4) Melbourne Polytechnic values its people and recognises that health and safety is integral to achieving excellent educational and work performance outcomes.

(5) Melbourne Polytechnic has a moral and legal responsibility to create and maintain, as far as practicable, a healthy and safe environment for all employees, students, contractors and visitors to our campuses.

(6) Melbourne Polytechnic will so far as reasonably practicable, take action to improve and promote OH&S to prevent workplace injuries and illness at all institute sites.

(7) Legislation, namely the Occupation Health and Safety Act 2004 and the Workplace Injury Rehabilitation and Compensation Act 2013 identifies and confirms responsibilities and requirements in relation to Occupational Health and Safety.

Each individual employee must take reasonable care for his or her own health and safety and for the health and safety of anyone else who may be affected by his or her acts or omissions at the workplace.

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Section 4 - Scope

(8) This policy applies to all employees of Melbourne Polytechnic, any independent contractor and any employee of any independent contractor engaged by Melbourne Polytechnic.

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Section 5 - Definitions

(9) For the purpose of this policy, the following definitions apply:

  1. Employee: means a person employed under a contract of employment with Melbourne Polytechnic.
  2. Near Miss: is an incident which did not result in property damage, injury or illness but which has the potential to result in one or more of these outcomes.
  3. Occupational Health and Safety: is the discipline concerned with protecting the health and safety of all stakeholders in the workplace from exposure to hazards and risks resulting from work activities.
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Section 6 - Responsibility and Accountability

Implement and monitor the Occupational Health and Safety Policy:
  • make regular assessments of OHS performance within the institute through advice received from the Executive Director People Culture and Corporate Services, the Manager OHS, WorkCover and Employee Wellbeing and the OHS Committee comprising of institute representatives and Health and Safety representatives. (Refer Division 7, S.72 and S.73 of the Occupation Health and Safety Act 2004)
  • ensure institute OHS performance is reported to the Institute Board – this includes as soon as practically possible, all incidences whether they occur during the course of work and/or studies or outside of hours, where hospitalisation of a staff member or student has occurred.
  • ensure that regular consultation between institute management and elected health and safety representatives occurs.
  • ensure that all specific policies operating within the institute are consistent with health and safety legislation and objectives.
Chief Executive Officer (CEO)
The policy will be regularly reviewed to ensure consistency with legislative and institute changes.
Melbourne Polytechnic seeks the corporation of all employees in realising its health and safety objectives and creating a safe working environment.
Be responsible for and overall coordination of OHS activities across the institute. In this regard, the Executive Director People Culture and Corporate Services shall be kept informed of all aspects of OHS by the Manager OHS, WorkCover and Employee Wellbeing.
Executive Director People Culture and Corporate Services
  • monitor changes in OHS legislation and assist staff to keep abreast of such changes;
  • ensure staff are kept aware of the relevant Acts, Regulations and Compliance Codes through;
  • develop policies and procedures on OHS issues and assist staff to follow institute procedures;
  • assist Line Managers to fulfil responsibilities under Acts and Regulations which apply to their areas of operations;
  • ensure the presence and auditing of Area Hazard Registers and Material Safety Data Sheets for all hazardous substances within the institute;
  • ensure a data base of Near Misses is maintained and appropriate action taken;
  • arrange for the investigation of incidents and dangerous occurrences within the institute and where appropriate, reporting to the relevant authorities;
  • provide suitable assistance to inspectors from appropriate authorities during inspections of institute properties.
Manager OHS, WorkCover and Employee Wellbeing
Implementation of the institute OHS policy, in particular:
  • observe, implement and fulfil responsibilities under Acts and Regulations which apply to their areas of operation;
  • implement and further develop standard work procedures for plant, equipment and substances which maximise safety;
  • provide information, training and supervision for all employees in the correct use of plant, equipment and substances used within their area of operation;
  • induct and train all employees, including new, transferring and returning employees are inducted and trained in hazard control measures for all hazards within the particular area of operation.
Employees must:
  • take reasonable care for his or her own health and safety and for the health and safety of anyone else who may be affected by his or her acts or omissions at the workplace;
  • effectively contribute to the further development of safe systems of work;
  • cooperate with institute management with respect to any action taken to comply with any requirement imposed by Occupational Health and Safety Act or regulations;
  • not interfere with or misuse items or facilities provided in the interests of the health, safety and welfare of institute employees;
  • report potential and actual hazards to his or her Line Manager or elected health and safety representatives;
  • not carry out work which he or she reasonably considers to be unsafe.
All employees will be provided with access to a copy of this policy and the policy will be displayed on main noticeboards at all campuses and be available on the institute’s Staff Portal.
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Section 7 - Supporting Documents and Templates