Workplace health & safety

Safety is an important part of working in Australia. Creating a safe work environment is a legal requirement for growers. Workers also need to take care of their own and others’ safety.

On this page:

Safety at work 

In Australia, the law says that businesses must do all they can to make sure the work done by workers does not hurt them or make them sick. This law is called work health and safety or occupational health and safety.

The law also says employers must have insurance for employees in case they are hurt at work. If employees are hurt or get sick at work, the insurance may pay for their medical treatment and for their wages until they can work again. This is called workers’ compensation.

Safe Work Australia has information about working safely in the agriculture industry external-icon.png.

Learn more about work health and safety laws from:

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Working in severe weather

Workers working outside are at greater risk of exposure to severe weather conditions. This can include extreme heat or cold, hail or dust storms.

Each state or territory has a workplace health and safety authority that can provide advice for workplaces experiencing severe weather. 

Safe Work Australia external-icon.png has information and resources for keeping workplaces safe during severe weather conditions.

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Bullying and harassment at work

No one should be bullied, harassed or discriminated against at work.

Australia has national anti-bullying laws. Bullying at work is unreasonable and repeated behaviour directed at an individual or group of people. It can be written or verbal and includes humiliation, abuse, spreading rumours or gossip.

The Fair Work Commission is the national workplace relations tribunal that deals with anti-bullying claims under the Fair Work Act. To find out whether you're covered by the national anti-bullying laws, visit the Commission's website external-icon.png.

If you're not covered by these laws, your local workplace health and safety authority can provide advice and information on:

  • how to try to resolve bullying issues at work or
  • provide referrals to other agencies that may be able to help.

Find your local workplace health and safety authority.

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Workers have the right to be free from unlawful discrimination at work and when they’re looking for work. This means that an employer cannot fire or not hire an employee, and a grower cannot treat a worker (including labour hire workers) differently than others because of a protected attribute including:

  • age
  • race
  • sex
  • sexual orientation
  • physical or mental disability
  • religion.

To learn more about discrimination, go to our Protections against discrimination at work page.

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