How would you define ‘serious harm’?

StressThe Minister of Labour has called for a public review of the definition of “serious harm” in the Health and Safety in Employment Act.

This is important because the definition of serious harm defines, among other things, the significant hazards that employers must manage, the illness and injury that they must report to the Department of Labour, and the work that employees may refuse because it is likely to cause them serious harm.

In 2002 the law was amended to made explicit that stress and fatigue must be managed like any other hazard, and that a fatigued person is a potential hazard at work.

But unions have argued that the existing definition of serious harm is concerned only with physical injury, at the expense of psychological or mental harm. This is inconsistent with the recognition given to harm caused by work-related stress.


Finsec is making a submission to the Department of Labour on this issue and we need to hear your views. We would like to hear in your own words how you personally would define stress, fatigue or serious harm at your workplace. We only need one or two of sentences each, but we want to hear from lots of you. Email us or leave a comment below by April 27.

(thanks to DailyPic for the photo)


1 Response to “How would you define ‘serious harm’?”

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