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4. Risk controls

The principal and/or their delegate in consultation with the Health and Safety Representatives (HSR) and employees, must eliminate or reduce the level of risk associated with work-related risk factors that may cause a mental health injury, so far as is reasonably practicable, by considering the workplace factors in section 3.2 of this Procedure.

Primary prevention has the greatest impact in reducing occupational stress. Risk control should embrace the following factors:

  • Activities to control the risk should be school and work-group specific, and be adapted to the needs, cultures, and economic realities of the school and workgroup.
  • Activities to control the risk should be targeted to school factors identified via risk assessment.
  • Risk-control plans should focus on primary prevention, but also include secondary and tertiary prevention activities.
  • Risk-control plans should focus on organisational-level interventions, but also include individual-level interventions.
  • Employee training should form part of a holistic approach to addressing mental health and wellbeing.

Refer to the Mental Health and Wellbeing Guide (DOCX)External Link for more detailed examples of controls that can reduce the risk of mental health injury.

4.1 Record current risk controls

The principal and/or their delegate should consult the HSR and relevant employees and record the current risk controls in the Occupational Health and Safety (OHS) Risk Register (XLSX)External Link .

Where a risk assessment is to be completed, current risk controls should also be recorded in the Risk assessment template (DOCX)External Link or equivalent.

4.2 Information, instruction and training

The principal and/or their delegate must ensure all employees are informed about the risk controls in place to manage mental health and wellbeing in the workplace. This can be achieved by:

  • ensuring all employees complete an OHS induction prior to commencing work
  • promoting and encouraging employees to report hazards (for example, psychosocial hazards), near misses and incidents on eduSafe PlusExternal Link (staff login required)

and by providing employees with:

  • a copy of the school OHS Risk Register and completed risk assessments and the opportunity to raise questions and participate in consultative processes
  • information about likely psychological hazards they may encounter in their work
  • information from the department about existing resources and strategies to reduce the risk of psychological injuries
  • information about the Employee Wellbeing Support Services (EWSS) and how to access it.

4.3 Monitor and review controls

Due to the complexity of workplace factors that can cause mental health injury, it is important that risks to mental health are managed on an ongoing basis, and regularly reviewed. The principal and/or their delegate are required to monitor and review the effectiveness of implemented risk controls on a regular basis (for example, quarterly) in consultation with HSR and relevant employees.

Review of controls must be ongoing. However, additional reviews are required when:

  • an incident or near miss is reported
  • a new potential risk is identified (for example, through a report on eduSafe Plus).
Chapter 4 of the Mental Health and Wellbeing — Employees Procedure on controlling risks associated with mental health injuries in schools

Reviewed 16 April 2024

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