The cultural perspective on health and safety takes in two different issues. The first is the cultural diversity of the workers in a particular workplace including the Australian cultural norms and expectations. The second is the culture within the organisation itself. Big or small businesses develop a culture of their own over time.
Managers and supervisors set the tone for the workplace culture.
Cultural diversity within the workforce is covered in law under various pieces of federal legislation including:
- Age Discrimination Act
- Australian Human Rights Commission Act
- Disability Discrimination Act
- Racial Discrimination Act
- Sex Discrimination Act
All of these laws are in the spirit of giving all workers ‘a fair go’ which is a time honoured Australian cultural norm.
Organisational culture is perhaps more difficult to pin point.
One thing that is commonly agreed is that the culture of an organisation is set from the top down. It is therefore, imperative that Managers at all levels set the tone by taking Health and Safety seriously and sensibly.
It can be as simple as communicating with workers and being open to making changes and allocating resources to the work of managing health and safety in their workplaces.