During a recent union workplace visit, members raised serious WHS concerns relating to the behaviour of a resident. Members reported being verbally and physically assaulted at work.
Being assaulted at work is not acceptable. If you are verbally or physically assaulted it’s important you report every incident as a hazard through your internal reporting system.
We know that this can cause serious physical, mental and emotional harm. We also know that in too many Aged Care workplaces, assaults by residents are not treated seriously or are even dismissed as just being part of the job.
Autumn Lodge management has a responsibility to ensure you are safe at work. By law, your employer must take steps to prevent you being assaulted at work.
Our advice to members is to:
1. Notify your employer in writing such as an email or incident report form (and keep a copy yourself).
3. Assault is a crime. If you believe you have been assaulted, you can make a complaint to the Police (call 131 444). You cannot be punished for making a complaint to the police about a crime.
We also want to hear from members who weren’t able to attend the recent workplace visit and who have concerns. Email your local HSU organiser Karen Wiles firstname.lastname@example.org with your concerns and what steps have or haven’t been taken by management. And if you know someone who isn’t a HSU member forward them this email. Now more than ever workers need protection. Encourage your workmates to join www.hsu.asn.au/join or phone 1300 478 679.
We will be writing to management on behalf of members to try to resolve these issues locally in the first instance without raising these with SafeWork NSW, the Aged Care Quality and Safety Commission or NSW Police.