Mental Health and the Law
Mr Kennett said that while some business leaders might view laws around workplace mental health as onerous, they help ensure businesses’ success. “These laws don’t just protect workers, they help create an environment that, as the PwC research has shown, helps business make money,” he said. “Bullying, harassment, inflexible rules, unrealistic deadlines and unmanageable workloads harm your business because they can create ongoing stress for employees that can lead to mental health problems such as depression and anxiety. This can affect workforce productivity and morale.”
Australian laws require businesses to ensure the health and safety of their workers and other people at the workplace as much as is reasonably practicable. This includes protecting people from risks to their mental health and protecting people who have mental health issues from discrimination of any kind when they are at work.
Safe Work Australia acting CEO, Michelle Baxter agreed that both physical and psychological health need to be taken seriously in the workplace. “Psychological hazards and risks can bemanaged by the same risk management process businesses used for physical hazards. I encourage all employers and workers to understand their legal requirements and implement practical risk.
These laws don’t just protect workers, they help create an environment that, as the PwC research has shown, helps business make money.