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Health and Safety Policy


Responsibility for policy: Health, Safety and Wellness Manager
Approving authority: Vice-Chancellor
Last reviewed: April 2019
Next review date: April 2021

Print Version

Application

  1. This policy applies to all staff, students, contractors and visitors to the University of Waikato.

Purpose

  1. The purpose of this policy is to set out the accountabilities and responsibilities of staff, students, contractors and visitors to the University with respect to the provision, maintenance and continuous improvement of a safe and healthy environment.

Related documents

  1. The following documents set out further information relevant to this policy:

Definition

  1. In this policy:
  2. staff member means “worker” as defined by the Health and Safety at Work Act 2015, including employees of the University, employees of a controlled entity of the University, Council members, contractors or consultants engaged by or working at the University, volunteers and any other person providing services to or at the University.

Principles

  1. As a ‘person conducting a business or undertaking’ (PCBU) under the Health and Safety at Work Act 2015, the University of Waikato acknowledges its primary duty of care and responsibility for people’s health and safety at work and will take all reasonable and practicable steps necessary to provide a safe and healthy environment for work and study through:
    1. the provision and maintenance of a work environment that is without risks to health and safety
    2. the provision and maintenance of safe plant and structures
    3. the provision and maintenance of safe systems of work
    4. the safe use, handling and storage of plant, substances and structures
    5. the provision of adequate facilities for the welfare of staff in carrying out work for the University of Waikato, including ensuring access to those facilities
    6. the provision of any information, training, instruction or supervision that is necessary to protect all persons from risks to their health and safety arising from work carried out at the University of Waikato, and
    7. that the health of staff, students and contractors are monitored where and when necessary for the purpose of preventing injury or illness arising from work carried out at the University of Waikato.

Responsibilities

  1. As the University’s governing body, the Council carries ultimate responsibility for the health and safety of all members of the University community.
  2. As officers of the University, members of the Council have a duty under section 44 of the Health and Safety at Work Act 2015 to exercise due diligence to ensure that the University complies with its duties and obligations under the Act; in discharging this responsibility the Council is advised by the Vice-Chancellor and the Health, Safety and Wellness Manager.
  3. The Vice-Chancellor is responsible for the strategic oversight of health and safety, compliance with relevant health and safety legislation and the provision and maintenance of a safe and healthy environment; delegated operational responsibilities are set out in this policy and the University of Waikato Health and Safety Framework.
  4. Pro Vice-Chancellors, Heads of School, Directors and equivalent are responsible for:
    1. providing leadership and operational support with regards to the implementation of this policy within their areas of responsibility in accordance with the University of Waikato Health and Safety Framework
    2. integrating health and safety arrangements into plans and objectives in their areas of responsibility
    3. developing local safety management arrangements to manage, as far as reasonably practical,  health and safety risks to staff, students and others
    4. providing opportunities for staff and students to contribute to and participate in the improvement of health and safety in their areas of responsibility
    5. delegating operational aspects of health and safety management to appropriate line managers and supervisors within their areas of responsibility, and monitoring compliance with those delegated responsibilities.
  5. Line managers and supervisors are responsible for:
    1. managing health and safety within their areas of responsibility as an integral part of their day-to-day activities in accordance with the University of Waikato Health and Safety Framework
    2. taking all practicable steps with respect to their areas of responsibility to provide and maintain a safe and healthy environment by:
      1. identifying local hazards and evaluating the risk of harm
      2. establishing and implementing appropriate standards and procedures
      3. establishing and insisting on safe methods, safe equipment, proper materials, and safe practices at all times
      4. providing appropriate training or instruction opportunities for staff and, where relevant, students
      5. providing opportunities for staff to participate in health and safety forums and processes for the improvement of health and safety in the workplace
      6. consulting staff during the development and review of procedures and work environment changes
      7. ensuring compliance with the Health and Safety Manual, relevant University policies, legislative requirements, standards, codes of practice and best practice guidelines, and
      8. ensuring that safety takes precedence over expediency at all times.
  6. Staff members are responsible for:
    1. observing safe work practices, following University health and safety procedures, and complying with the Health and Safety Manual, relevant University policies, standards, codes of practice and best practice guidelines
    2. taking all practicable steps to ensure their own safety at work and to ensure that their action or inaction does not cause harm to any other person, and
    3. complying, so far as reasonably able, with any reasonable instruction with respect to their own health and safety or that of other persons that is given to them by line managers or the Health, Safety and Wellness Manager on behalf of the University of Waikato.
  7. Academic staff are responsible for ensuring that hazard identification and control is considered when planning and implementing teaching and research activities under their control.
  8. Students, contractors and visitors to the University are responsible for:
    1. taking reasonable care of their own health and safety
    2. taking reasonable care that their action or inaction does not adversely affect the health and safety of other persons, and
    3. complying, so far as reasonably able, with any reasonable instruction with respect to their own health and safety or that of other persons that is given to them by any staff member on behalf of the University of Waikato.
  9. The Health, Safety and Wellness Manager is responsible for:
    1. the development, implementation and monitoring of a Health and Safety Framework, Health and Safety Manual, relevant University policies, standards, codes of practice and best practice guidelines that uphold the above principles  and allow the University to comply with its duty of care, including associated monitoring and regular reporting, and
    2. assisting line managers and supervisors in identifying health and safety requirements in their areas of responsibility.

Responsibility for monitoring compliance

  1. The Health, Safety and Wellness Manager is responsible for monitoring compliance with this policy and reporting any breaches to the Vice-Chancellor.
  2. Breaches of this policy by staff may result in disciplinary action under the Staff Code of Conduct.
  3. Breaches of this policy by students may result in disciplinary action under the Code of Student Conduct.
  4. Breaches of this policy by contractors will be managed in accordance with the relevant contract.

Note

The term ‘School’ in this policy includes Faculties and the term ‘Head of School’ includes Deans.


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