Responsibilities of workers and others at the workplace

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When do the new WHS laws come into effect?

WA’s Work Health and Safety legislation is not expected to come into force until January 2022. This means that the current occupational, mines safety and petroleum safety legislation still applies.

Overviews of the new WHS Act and general regulations

Overview documents provide Information on the new WHS laws coming into effect in 2022. Guidance for mines and petroleum regulations will be released at a later date.

Overview of the Act Overview of the general regulations

This information is designed to help WA organisations and their associated workforces (including volunteers) prepare for the new Work Health and Safety laws. More information will be added as it becomes available.

Who is considered a worker? 

Under the Work Health and Safety Act 2020 a worker is any person who carries out work for a PCBU, including work as an employee, contractor, subcontractor, self-employed person, outworker, apprentice or trainee, work experience student, employee of a labour hire company placed with a ‘host employer’ and volunteers.

What are the duties of workers under the Act? 

While at work, workers must take reasonable care for their own health and safety and that of others who may be affected by their actions or omissions. They must also:

  • comply, so far as they are reasonably able, with any reasonable instruction given by the PCBU to allow the PCBU to comply with WHS laws
  • cooperate with any reasonable policy or procedure of the PCBU relating to health or safety at the workplace that they have been notified about.

What are the duties of others at the workplace?

Similar duties apply to other persons at a workplace. Any person at a workplace, including customers and visitors, must take reasonable care of their own health and safety and that of others who may be affected by their actions or omissions. They must also comply, so far as they are reasonably able, with any reasonable instruction that is given by the PCBU to comply with WHS laws.

For detailed information on the key terms and definitions see the Overview of Western Australia’s Work Health and Safety Act 2020.

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