Effective from October 2018
Approved by: Chief Executive Officer
To provide Five Good Friends workers (staff, volunteers and contractors) and stakeholders with effective guidance on matters pertaining to manual handling of both people and objects to ensure safety. We acknowledge that manual handling tasks are a leading cause of injuries in the health and community services sector and as an organisation Five Good Friends will look to minimise risks and incidents by promoting appropriate on-site risk analysis and use of equipment. This policy is designed to ensure that Five Good Friends meets its legal obligations and commitment to ensure potentially hazardous manual tasks are undertaken safely.
Five Good Friends. is committed to eliminating adverse outcomes as a result of performing activities related to manual handling. We will do so by:
- working with members and workers to identify manual handling hazards prior to the provision of service
- ensuring that the design of tasks and equipment provided is consistent with the goal of providing safe and effective services and eliminating or reducing manual handling injuries
- ensuring that the environments in which manual handling tasks are to be performed are appropriately assessed and modified as able to minimise risk
- ensuring workers and contractors receive all appropriate resources, including training, to enable the aims of this policy to be achieved.
This Policy states Five Good Friends expectations:
- Awareness - all persons are to understand typical factors that can lead to manual handling injuries at the time of worker (staff, volunteers, and contractors) and Member Onboarding. These may include but are not limited to moving, transporting or transferring members, repetitive movements, lifting or carrying objects or equipment, working at incorrect heights, poor environmental design, poor posture and body mechanics, poor physical fitness, sudden or unexpected load bearing, fatigue, lack of access or refusal to use appropriate equipment, heavy physical work, unpredictable or changing loads.
- Approach - the community team, managers and directors are accessible, supportive and responsive to any ideas that may minimise manual handling risk in the workplace or community. We accept that some services may need to be modified where the risk is felt to be unacceptable to persons in relation to incidents and injuries. Our approach is based on early assessment, collaboration, risk mitigation and ongoing monitoring.
- Response - all workers will have the resources and tools to minimize manual handling risk effectively within the scope of their role. When risks are identified, they will be promptly responded to. Incidents will be promptly acted on in accordance with the Five Good Friends Incident Management Policy.
- Process - Identifying risks should be part of any manual handling risk assessment. These are expected to occur:
- on initial home or community site inspections, during client assessments and documented in a Help Plan.
- on any scheduled or unscheduled Help Plan review
- at any time a worker notes a change in conditions related to the environment or the presenting condition of their client.
- at any time a new task is being considered by the Member with the help of a worker.
- When assessing manual handling risks staff and contractors shall consider key risk factors. These include but are not limited to:
- the work environment
- the physical condition and experience of those involved in performing the task
- the posture and position of the worker
- the duration and frequency of the activity
- likely weights and forces involved
- the height and location of the load
- the distance the load needs to be moved
- the availability of equipment designed to minimize risk
- how other activities to be carried out on the same day may impact on the task.