Zero Harm – Workplace Health and Safety Policy
"The safety and well-being of our staff is our highest priority. We will be proactive in this area and take all reasonable actions to ensure the health and happiness of our team."
– Guy Dawson, CEO
Occupational Health And Safety
We the employer and you the employee agree that a safe and secure workplace is important, and we will comply with Occupational Health and Safety laws. You will take all practicable steps to ensure your own safety while at work, and to ensure that no action or inaction by you while at work causes harm to yourself or any other person. You will ensure safety procedures are always followed.
You must ensure that you know our health and safety rules and procedures. You will not misuse any equipment or process that is provided to ensure workplace health and safety. You will be disciplined under company policy if you do not comply with the rules and procedures. You may also be at risk of fines if a workplace inspector finds you committing a breach of health and safety laws.
First Aid Facilities
- First aid facilities must not be used for any purpose other than for which they are provided.
- All first aid injuries and treatments must be entered into the first aid register.
- Hands must be washed before administering first aid or handling first aid equipment.
- Advise your supervisor if any first aid stocks are getting low to allow replacement before they run out.
A Hazard is anything which can cause injury, loss or damage to a person, property or the environment.
If you detect something which is hazardous, you should:
Remove or rectify the problem immediately
Report the hazard (verbally and using the Hazard Report Form) to the person in control of the area.
Prevent others from coming into contact with the hazard (barricade, sign, etc)
Avoid placing yourself at risk of injury or illness through contact with the hazard.
An incident is an accident where no person was injured (but may have been), and where damage did or may have occurred to company property, equipment or the environment. All incidents must be reported immediately verbally and using the incident report form, giving all details as required on the form.
Injury / Illness Reporting
All work related injuries and illnesses must be reported as soon as possible after the injury or the onset of the illness. The Injury Report Form must be completed in full and be submitted together with a doctor’s certificate from the doctor or practitioner providing the treatment.
A clearance stating that you are fit for duty must be obtained and submitted before you can recommence work after a work-related injury or illness.
Safety And Warning Signs
Safety signs are provided in workplaces to warn of hazards, and to advise of actions which must be carried out, or are prohibited. You must obey the message or instruction given on the sign.
Persons found defacing or damaging safety or warning signs will be subject to disciplinary action.
Manual Handling, Lifting & Moving Loads
Injuries resulting from over exertion are often cumulative in nature, and may result in permanent physical disability, and an inability to work or even carry out normal everyday duties without pain and difficulty.
You must always follow the safety rules when moving loads or exerting force and effort:
Size up the task, and check the weight of a load, if it feels too heavy get assistance.
Do not move loads unnecessarily – avoid double moving of objects if possible.
Use mechanical aids (trolleys, etc) to move heavy loads or to move loads over long distances.
Always observe correct manual handling and safe lifting practices.
The rules to follow for safe lifting are –
- Plan the lift – ensure that you have good access to the object, and your travel path is clear
- Make sure the load is safe to move (no loose or moving parts, container in sound condition, etc)
- Get close to the load you want to move.
- Get a good grip, use gloves when handling rough, sharp, hot or cold objects
- Keep back straight, bent knees to access object and use your legs (not back) to lift the load
- Keep the load close to your body when lifting and carrying
- Obtain assistance with long, heavy or awkward loads, or when moving over a long distance.
Computer Workstation ErgonomicsKeyboards
Place the keyboard in a position that allows the forearms to be close to the horizontal and the wrists to be straight. That is, with the hand in line with the forearm. If this causes the elbows to be held far out from the side of the body then recheck the work surface height.
Some people prefer to have their wrists supported on a wrist rest or the desk. Be careful not to have the wrist extended or bent in an up position.Chairs
Adjust the seat tilt so that you are comfortable when you are working on the keyboard. Usually, this will be close to horizontal but some people prefer the seat tilted slightly forwards. Your knees should be bent at a comfortable angle and greater than 90º flexion. If this places an uncomfortable strain on the leg muscles, or if the feet do not reach the floor, then a footrest should be used. The footrest height must allow your knees to be bent at 90º; the height of the footrest may need to be adjustable. Adjust the backrest so that it supports the lower back when you are sitting upright. A range of chairs is available.Phones
Avoid cradling the phone between your head and shoulder when answering calls. If you need to use your computer at the same time, use a headset or the phone’s hands-free/speaker-phone capabilities if the environment is suitable.Monitors
Set the eye-to-screen distance at the distance that permits you to most easily focus on the screen. Usually this will be within an arm’s length
Set the height of the monitor so that the top of the screen is below eye level and the bottom of the screen can be read without a marked inclination of the head. Usually this means that the centre of the screen will need to be near shoulder height. Your eyes should be level with the tool bar.
People who wear bifocal or multi-focal lenses will need to get a balance between where they see out of their lenses and avoid too much neck flexing. The height of the monitor can be adjusted using a monitor riser.Document holder
Place the document holder close to the monitor screen in the position that causes the least twisting or inclination of the head.Desks
Adjust the height of the work surface and/or the height of the chair so that the work surface allows your elbows to be bent at 90º, forearms parallel with the floor, wrist straight, shoulders relaxed
Place all controls and task materials within a comfortable reach of both hands so that there is no unnecessary twisting of any part of the body. Most people prefer the document holder to be between the keyboard and the monitor. There are many different types of document holders available.
Lighting, Glare And ReflectionLighting
Place the monitor to the side of the light source/s, not directly underneath. Try to site desks between rows of lights. If the lighting is fluorescent strip lighting, the sides of the desks should be parallel with the lights. Try not to put the screen near a window. If it is unavoidable ensure that neither the screen nor the operator faces the window. If the monitor is well away from windows, there are no other sources of bright light and prolonged desk-work is the norm, use a low level of service light of 300 lux. If there are strongly contrasting light levels, then a moderate level of lighting of 400-500 lux may be desirable.Glare and Reflection
It is important to detect the presence of glare and reflection. To determine whether there is glare from overhead lights, sit down and hold an object such as a book above the eyes at eyebrow level and establish whether the screen image becomes clearer in the absence of overhead glare.
To detect whether there are reflections from the desk surface, hold the book above the surface and assess the change in reflected glare from the screen.
You can eliminate or reduce the influence of these reflections in a number of ways:
Tilt the screen (top part forwards) so that the reflections are directed below eye level.
Purchase an LCD screen.
Cover the screen with a light diffusing surface or anti-glare screen.
Negative contrast screen (dark characters on light background) will reduce the influence of these reflections.
If you experience eye discomfort when using a bright screen you should make the following adjustments:
Turn the screen brightness down to a comfortable level.
Look away into the distance in order to rest the eyes for a short while every 10 minutes or so.
Change the text and background colours. We recommend black characters on white or yellow background, or yellow on black, white on black, white on blue and green on white. Avoid red and green and yellow on white.
Using a Mouse
A well-designed mouse should not cause undue pressure on the wrist and forearm muscles. A large bulky mouse may keep the wrist continuously bent at an uncomfortable angle.
Pressure can be reduced by releasing the mouse at frequent intervals and by selecting a slim-line, low-profile mouse. Keep the mouse as close as possible to the keyboard, elbow bent and close to the body.
Keyboard Equipment And Radiation
Computer screens emit visible light that allows the characters on the screen to be seen. Weak electromagnetic fields and very low levels of other radiation that are not visible to the human eye can be detected by sensitive instruments. Similar emissions are produced by television receivers. The levels of most radiations and electromagnetic fields emitted from computers are much less than those from natural sources, such as the sun or even the human body, and are well below levels considered to be harmful by responsible expert bodies such as the International Radiation Protection Association (IRPA).
Posture While Typing
Good posture is essential for all computer users. You should adopt a natural and relaxed position, providing opportunity for movement, from which you can assume several alternative positions including sitting and standing (if possible).
Typing is a physical activity, and using a keyboard requires skill, hence the need to learn correct typing technique. Unskilled (‘hunt and peck’) typists are particularly at risk of “occupational overuse injury” because they:
- Often use only one or two fingers which may overload the finger tendons
- Are constantly looking from keyboard to screen to keyboard, which may strain neck muscles
- Often adopt a tense posture (wrists bent back and fingers ‘poised to strike’).
Payless Promotions acknowledges the importance of learning correct typing technique. Departments should ensure that untrained staff receive appropriate training.
Speed of Keying
The efficiency and speed of modern computers makes it possible for a skilled operator to type extremely quickly. This capability, reinforced by workload pressures, means the potential exists for operators to key at speeds which may cause or contribute to occupational overuse syndrome. The role of the repetitive movement in injury is not fully understood but is believed to interfere with the lubrication capacity of tendons, and the ability of muscles to receive sufficient oxygen supplies.
Ten thousand to 12,000 keystrokes per hour is considered an acceptable standard.
Length Of Time On The Keyboard
The maintenance of a fixed posture for long periods is tiring and increases the likelihood of muscular aches and pains. In addition, long periods of repetitive movement and sustained visual attention can also give rise to fatigue- related complaints.
It is recommended that operators take regular postural/stretching breaks to reduce intense periods of repetitive movement.
Employees newly engaged in keyboard work, and staff returning from an absence of two or more weeks, need a period of adjustment. The adjustment may be achieved through reduced work rates, or provision of alternative duties with a gradual reintroduction to keyboard work.
Jobs should be designed and organised so that either:
- Computer-related tasks can be interspersed with non-computer related, or
- Computer based tasks can be rotated amongst several staff (task/job sharing).
It is not the change of task per se, but the change to using different movements and postures that is important. The whole purpose of task variety is to give the overloaded structures a necessary break.
Supervisors should ensure that workload controls are exercised using the following strategies:
Planning ahead to avoid peaks, and rushed jobs
Delegating fairly to all staff not just the best workers
Considering the total workload of the individual (often comes from a number of sources)
Clearly defining each operator’s workload
Implementing systems of prioritisation such as work request forms and waiting lists
Using relief staff
Applying strict tests to the use of ‘urgent’ labels
Discouraging ‘endless’ drafts
Discouraging the use of typed internal minutes and memoranda
Encouraging authors to have realistic expectations
Teaching authors keyboard skills
Teaching operators how to be assertive, and how to prioritise
Supporting operators when authors impose unrealistic expectations
Refusing illegible drafts.
Posture and Environment
Change your posture at frequent intervals to minimise fatigue. Avoid awkward postures at the extremes of the joint range, especially the wrists.
Take frequent short rest breaks rather than infrequent longer ones. Avoid sharp increases in work rate. Changes should be gradual enough to ensure that the workload does not result in excessive fatigue.
After prolonged absences from work the overall duration of periods of keyboard work should be increased gradually if conditions permit.
Alcohol And Drug Use
You must not consume drugs or alcohol in the workplace at any time unless it is for legitimate medical reasons. You must notify management if medication you are taking (or failing to take) is likely to affect your safety or the safety of other in the workplace.
Health and safety legislation places an obligation on us to ensure that employees do not place their own health and safety and the health and safety of others in the workplace at risk. To fulfill the obligation it may be necessary to remove you from the workplace when there is a belief that the health and safety of yourself or other persons is be compromised. Any activity of this type will be fully documented and attached to your personal file.
Items such as fire extinguishers, hose reels exit doors and escape routes are provided for your safety, and must be kept in good operating condition, and must be readily accessible at all times. Fire extinguishers should be placed on a holder attached to a wall, and not stood on the floor or be placed on a shelf or in a rack or cupboard, etc.
Firefighting appliances and emergency exits must not be misused or used for purposes other than for which they have been provided. Any use of a fire extinguisher must be reported immediately to allow for the unit to be recharged and ready for use should a need arise. If a fire extinguisher is used, no matter how little, it must not be placed back in position, but be serviced immediately
Misuse of equipment provided for emergencies is NOT allowed, and is an offence under Fire Safety laws. Exit doors and passageways must be kept clear at all times, and be kept clean. Doorways must not be obstructed, even for a short period and flammable materials or dangerous goods must not be stored or placed in the vicinity of an emergency exit. Please do not attempt to use a fire extinguisher or hose reel to fight a fire unless you have been trained in the use of the appliance.
Use of the wrong extinguisher could result in injury or even death if, for example a water type of appliance was used on a flammable liquid fire or a fire involving electrical equipment.
You must follow instructions when evacuating the premises for any reason. All employees are required to meet at and remain at the designated emergency assembly area until the all clear is given or you are told to do otherwise. This is to ensure that all persons on the premises are accounted for, and to allow further instructions to be given.
You should know what to do before any emergency happens, to prevent panic or confusion, there for all training drills must be taken seriously as these will need to be followed should a real emergency happen.
Damage To Company Property
Normal wear and tear of company equipment is an accepted part of business. This can be minimized by regular maintenance and adherence to correct operating instructions, and not by using the equipment for other purposes.
All damage must be reported to management along with how the damage occurred. Damage to company property due to neglect will result in counseling, and if necessary, disciplinary action. Malicious, willful or deliberate damage to company property will result in dismissal.
Unless you have been authorised to do so, you must not use company computers for private purposes. You must not download or install any software onto a company computer without permission, and virus checks must be carried out before opening any emails, attachments or executable (.exe) files. You must not use company computers for gaming or private purposes including social networking sites such as Facebook, msn messenger and Myspace. You must not download company information for private purposes. Your access to the Internet may be controlled subject to company policy.
If you are authorized to access the Internet or to receive and send emails, you must ensure that all anti-virus and anti-spy ware programs are kept up-to-date, and that scans are carried out at regular intervals. You must inform your manager immediately of any problems that you encounter while using a company computer.
Staff Logins, Usernames & Passwords
Where provided, team members must ensure they are using their unique login details for all software. Team Leaders and Managers must ensure all staff members are provided with unique logins where the software makes this possible. Passwords are not to be shared amongst team members at any time under any circumstances, unless previously approved by senior management (CEO).
Failure to comply with this by using another team member’s unique log in or password is, and can potentially be a dismissible offence.
Workplace House-keeping & Hygiene
Many workplace accidents and incidents occur because of poor housekeeping in workplaces. You should keep the office in a clean and tidy condition as much as possible to avoid time wasted in trying to locate items, to provide a workplace free of hazards, and to maintain a satisfactory work environment.
Rubbish must not accumulate around the workplace and should be placed in bins. Bin must be emptied on a regular basis. Food scraps must be placed in the correct bins and must be emptied every couple of days to ensure no bad smells linger in the office.
Recyclable materials should not be disposed of as general waste, but be placed into special bins provided for recyclable materials.
Floors should be kept clear and items which could fall must be placed in a secure location. Paperwork should be filed or stored in such a way that an item can be located easily if, for any reason you are not able to be at work.
Hazardous substances are forbidden from entering the Payless Promotions workplace during office hours or at any time while staff are in the building
Non-hazardous alternatives must be used if reasonable available.
Payless Promotions employees are forbidden from using hazardous substances for any reason.
If the use of a hazardous substance becomes essential and there is no non-hazardous substitute reasonably available the substance must be brought into the workplace and used by a contactor outside of business hours at a time when there are no staff in the building
When this occurs the contractor must supply written and signed notification of:
The hazardous substance being used
The use of the hazardous substance is being used in a compliant manner
The hazardous substance has been disposed off in a compliant manner – never into general waste bins.
Waste chemicals, oils, paints, and cleaning materials etc, must not be disposed of as hazardous waste, and not be placed into general waste bins.
Absenteeism is the situation where you are not at work, and may take the form of-
Taking extended lunch breaks
Temporary absence from work for personal or other reasons, or
Failure to come to work altogether
Where it is practical for you to do so, you must notify a member of management of your absence by phone well in advance of your start time. If you are absent due to sickness we may require a medical certificate whether you claim sick leave or not. Personal Leave requires a medical certificate for any leave taken for more than one working day, or for any single or multiple days taken on a Monday, Friday or days connecting to a public holiday or annual leave. If we consider that your absences are becoming frequent or follow a pattern, we will discuss the situation with you to determine the cause of the problem. If after this your absences continue, other courses of action will be considered.
If we do not provide you with protective clothing or clothing of a corporate nature, we would expect that the clothing that you wear at work will be appropriate for the type of work that you are doing and reflect the values of the company
We will not tolerate clothing and accessories which we consider to be too revealing, provocative or inappropriate (more especially in public interface areas), and anyone wearing clothing of this nature will be required to change into more appropriate clothing before allowed to commence work.
Use of Company Property
Company property must not be used for private or personal purposes unless permission to do so has been obtained beforehand. The use of company equipment to carry out private work during work breaks may be permitted subject to the type of work involved and the availability of equipment to carry out the task, and the ability of the person to safely carry out the work.
Use of Mobile Phones
Mobile phones are not permitted in offices. If you wish to bring your phone into the workplace, it must be put onto silent and non-vibrate mode and then placed in the designated place. Your phones can then be accessed during breaks, but must not be taken into your office. If you need to access your phone outside of breaks for exceptional circumstances you can do so without permission but you must use your phone outside your office and return it to the designated area.
This policy applies to ALL staff including all levels of management.
If you feel you have a circumstance that requires you to have your phone in your office please talk to management. We will look at all options to solve the issue without a mobile phone, and if this cannot be achieved we will give individual permission to have your phone in your office.
Personal Telephone Calls
Staff should use the office phone, instead of mobile phones as a means of incoming contact during work hours. Incoming calls should be kept to necessary communication and length-of-call only.
Social calls should not be made from company landlines or mobile phones during business hours.
Use of Personal Entertainment Devices
Permission to use person entertainment devices will be given at the discretion of the supervisor of the workplace. This permission will depend on a number of factors and should always be sought before using the device. Care must be taken not to disturb or distract other persons when using the device.
It is the intention of Payless Promotions to achieve the principle object of anti-discrimination. This is to respect and value the diversity of the work force by helping to prevent and eliminate discrimination on the basis of race, colour, sex, sexual preference, age, physical or mental disability, marital status, family responsibilities, pregnancy, religion, political opinion, national extraction or social origin.
Discrimination against a person is prohibited under company policy, state and federal laws. If you feel that you have been discriminated against let a member of management know and they will attempt to sort out your allegations to the best of their ability.
Harassment is any form of unwanted behavior that may intimidate, humiliate or offend any person. Harassment of any person on the following grounds is illegal: Age, disability (including intellectual, physical or psychiatric), whether actual or perceived and either present or past, marital status, race, colour, nationality or ethnicity, sex, sexuality or pregnancy. It is also illegal to harass a person on any of these grounds being applied to their relatives, friends or colleagues.
The following behaviors maybe classed as harassment-
Material that is racist, sexist, sexually explicit, homophobic, etc.
Verbal abuse or comments that put down or stereotype persons, gestures that are sexually or racially offensive
Ignoring, isolating or segregating a person or group because of their sex, race etc.
Sexual and common assault (also are criminal offences)
Initiation ceremonies involving unwelcome sexual, sexist or racist behaviour, and jokes based on gender, race, marital status, sexuality, disability or age.
We will take any reported cases of harassment seriously and take immediate action taken to investigate and deal with the issue. Both sides of the case will be listened to and if verified, acted on to prevent further harassment. A person who lodges a complaint will not be victimised because of the complaint. If you are deemed to have harassed another person, you will be counseled, and if the harassment is continued, subjected to our disciplinary procedures.
Difference of opinion, conflicts, personality clashes and problems in working relationships is a part of working life. However, if this type of behavior is repeated, or increases in intensity and becomes offensive, humiliating or threatening to a person, the workplace bullying exists, and as a health and safety risk, it must be reported to management and must be stopped
A single incident of harassing type behavior is not considered to be workplace bullying. If you feel that you are being bullied (or witness another person being bullied), you should report the matter to allow proper action to be taken to prevent the situation from escalating.
Eating And Drinking In Workplaces
Meal and tea breaks are provided for employees as part of our working conditions. Water bottles can be filled and used at any time, however all other food and drinks should be consumed during allocated break times.
Food or drink must not be consumed in areas where toxic or harmful substances are used or present, or in food preparation areas. You should wash your hands thoroughly before eating, drinking or smoking.
Email And Internet Use
You must not download or access any material which could be considered to be pornographic or objectionable, or send emails of an offensive nature. Any suspect emails should be deleted immediately, and all email attachments are to be virus- checked before opening. Personal e-mails must not be checked or opened on work computers even outside of work hours.
While access to staff emails and will be required by management in certain circumstances, pervasive, systematic and ongoing surveillance of staff emails and logs should not be necessary. You are assured that the privacy of your communication will be respected as long as you abide by our policy.
Expenses (Work Related)
You should not purchase goods or services on behalf of the company unless you have been authorized to do so. Tax invoices must be obtained for all purchases, and these must be presented for verification and processing.
Where you have used your own money to make and authorized purchase on behalf of the company or have had to incur out of pocket expenses you must:
- Obtain a detailed tax invoice for the goods (or services) purchased and present it for verification and processing
Any reimbursement made with normal pay is kept separate and not included in your taxable income.
Fighting And Violence
Conflict between co-workers is a natural part of working life. The escalation of conflict into aggression, fighting or violence is not condoned, and persons involved in fighting or violence risk immediate dismissal. If you feel that you are being threatened with or being coerced into any type of violence, you should report the matter to your superior immediately to allow action to be taken to prevent the matter escalating into actual violence and the ensuing likelihood of dismissal.
Leave Entitlements And ArrangementsAnnual Leave
Annual leave must be taken at a time mutually agreed with us with a minimum notice period of four weeks. The leave is cumulative (ie unused balances carry over from year to year). However annual leave should be taken within 12 months of the entitlement. If the leave is not taken within 12 months, we may direct you to take leave with one month’s notice. If you leave this employment, or are dismissed for any reason, you will receive on termination a payment in lieu of any accrued annual leave entitlement.
By agreement with us, if you accrue more than an agreed amount of leave, you may elect to be paid out for excess leave. The payment will be equal to the amount that you would have been paid had the leave been taken.Personal Leave (including sick leave)
Personal leave is any leave taken for the purposes of:
Personal illness or injury sick leave or
Caring for an immediate family or household member (bereavement leave).
The death of an immediate family or household member (bereavement leave).
(For the purpose of the personal leave, the term immediate family or household member means your spouse, partner, parent, grandparent, child, grandchild, sibling, or any person who lives with you permanently).
Personal leave is cumulative – ie: unused balances carry over from year to year. We may grant additional unpaid personal leave for exceptional circumstances at our discretion. Notice for personal leave should be given in accordance with absenteeism requirements.Jury Service
If you are called up for jury service, we agree to make up the difference between the daily attendance fee you receive on jury service and your normal wage for the same period. You must provide proof of attendance at jury service and of any payment received at the time of claiming the difference.
Performance appraisal is a valuable method of identifying any performance gap (the shortfall that occurs when performance does not meet the standard set by the organization as acceptable), to inform the employees about the quality of his or her performance and allowing the appraiser to receive feedback from employees about job problems etc.
Modern performance appraisal may be defined as a structured formal interaction between a worker and a supervisor, which usually takes the form of an interview in which the work performance of the subordinate is examined and discussed, with a view to identifying weaknesses and strengths, as well as opportunities for improvements and skills development. The performance appraisal process also allows employees to participate in and assist in the identification of work areas and processes where improvements in productivity and efficiency can be achieved.
We expect that all employees will adhere to accepted public standards of hygiene, (bodily and clothing), and failure to adhere to these standards will result in the offender not being allowed to start work until they have met these standards to the satisfaction of their supervisor and company management. Persons working in public interface areas are expected to maintain a suitable standard of bodily cleanliness at all times.
We will collect only what information about you as is necessary for employment purposes and for your wellbeing. This information will be collected only by lawful and fair means, and not in an unreasonably intrusive way, and will only be accessible to those persons who are specifically authorized to access the information under privacy laws.
At your request, we will let you know, generally, what sort of information we hold about you, for what purposes, and how it is collected, held and disclosed.
Smoking is prohibited in all enclosed areas of workplaces. This ban extends to everyone who works in or visits a workplace, including employers, employees, contractors, voluntary workers, visitors and customers. Smoking is not permitted in staff rooms, lunchrooms, cafeterias, restrooms or toilets, but is only allowed in designated areas away from any entrance to a building or ventilation structure or chemical or flammable materials storages.
Smoking during working hours is only permitted during designated meal or tea breaks or during breaks between shifts. You are not allowed to smoke in a company vehicle unless we have given you permission to do so, and then only when there is no one else in the vehicle.
You must take all practicable steps to ensure that Payless Promotions is protected from theft, malicious damage or unauthorized use when property is left unattended for any period.
If you are the last person to leave the office must ensure that all entries are secure, lights, computers, air conditioners/heaters are turned off before leaving the office. It is mandatory that the backup hard drive is taken out of the office over night to protect all company files from being lost if there happen to be a fire, break in, etc, overnight.