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Psychosocial hazards refer to factors in the workplace that can affect the psychological well-being of employees, potentially leading to stress, burnout, and other adverse health effects. Recognising the importance of ensuring a safe and healthy work environment, Australia and Aotearoa New Zealand have implemented various control measures to address psychosocial hazards in the workplace.
Psychosocial hazards encompass a range of workplace factors that can negatively impact an individual's mental health and well-being. These hazards are typically associated with the organisational and social aspects of work and can include factors such as aggression and violence, low job control, poor workplace relationships, bullying (especially gender-based) and sexual harassment. Prolonged exposure to psychosocial hazards can result in increased stress levels, decreased job satisfaction, and even physical harm from the stress response. In Australia, mental stress was the fourth largest cause of serious workers compensation claims in 2020.
The Australian and Aotearoa New Zealand governments, along with regulatory bodies and organisations, have implemented several control measures to address psychosocial hazards in the workplace. These measures aim to prevent or minimise the negative effects of psychosocial hazards on employees and promote a psychologically healthy work environment. Some key control measures include:
Psychosocial hazards can be found every day, in every workplace, and in every industry. Maybo supports organisations in becoming more safe, healthy, and productive by minimising risks in the workplace. Maybo programs help organisations understand how to reduce risks of work-related violence, identify signs and causes of escalating conflict, and know how positive interactions can reduce conflict.
By prioritising risk assessment, training on preventing conflict and reducing risks, and employee support, organisations in Australia and Aotearoa New Zealand can mitigate the negative effects of psychosocial hazards and foster a positive and supportive work culture. Maybo helps organisations meet their obligations by identifying hazards, assessing, managing and minimising risks, and maintaining and reviewing control measures.