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Mining workforce safety study preliminary findings

A landmark study into mental health and workplace culture across Western Australia’s mining sector has released two reports with its preliminary findings.

Curtin University’s Centre for Transformative Work Design is undertaking the four-year study to gather and evaluate data on sexual assault, harassment, mental health, drug and alcohol use, and emerging mine safety issues.

Curtin’s first report, Towards a healthy and safe workforce in the mining industry, used public information to assess how Australian mining companies are ensuring the health and safety of their employees.

Curtin’s next report, due to be released early 2023, will focus on data from WA’s mining industry.

The landmark study forms part of the WA Government’s Mental Awareness, Respect and Safety program, which was launched in December 2021.

To view both reports, visit https://www.wa.gov.au/government/publications/mars-preliminary-report-1-review-and-mapping-of-current-practice and https://www.wa.gov.au/government/publications/mars-preliminary-report-2a-review-and-synthesis-of-the-literature

Mines and Petroleum minister Bill Johnston said the State Government would continue to work with industry and the community to eliminate inappropriate behaviours from WA workplaces.

“I’m very pleased to receive the first reports from the landmark study into a range of mental health and mine safety issues, as it will guide our future health, safety and wellbeing programs to industry,” he said.

“The MARS program is an important part of our strategy to stamp out sexual violence and drive cultural change in WA’s resources sector.”

Women’s Interests minister Simone McGurk said changing entrenched attitudes won’t be easy, but it must be done.

“When women are safe and supported at work, it’s better for business and better for the wider community,” she said.

“These findings will help guide the important work that needs to be done. Women working in this industry have put up with too much for too long, and it shouldn’t just be up to them to call out bad behaviour.

“We need more women to work in this sector and we need them to be treated with respect and we are committed to working with industry to make sure that happens.”

Editor of industrial titles and mastheads with Prime Creative Media. Publications include Rail Express and Australian Mining (web content).
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