Work Health & Safety

Information for health and safety in the workplace

Every worker has the right to return home safely after a day at work. Unions have fought for generations for today’s safety legislation that, if followed, should ensure the safety of all workers. You have the right to refuse work that is dangerous to your health and safety. If you are worried about your health and safety, tell your employer and contact your union. Unions NSW will continue to fight to improve safety at work and reduce workplace fatalities, injuries and illnesses.

Work health and safety in NSW is regulated by SafeWork NSW based on harmonised laws that have been adopted by most states and territories. Employers have an obligation to provide a safe place of work, not just for employees but for all those who use their space. Employers must also consult their employees about work health and safety. This can be done through a system of elected Health and Safety Reps (HSRs), a Health and Safety Committee (HSC) or other agreed means. Any worker can request the election of an HSR. At its simplest, workplace safety is achieved by applying a risk management approach. This means hazards must be identified and where possible eliminated. Where this is not possible the risk of harm from hazards should be minimised.