Section Two: Get Started
Confirm your Commitment
- Complete a self-assessment
- Develop Farm OHS Policy
- Select Health and Safety Representative (5-19 employees)
- Select Health and Safety Committee (20 or more employees)
- Develop rules of procedure for the Committee
- Address posting requirements
Like any task that you have undertaken, you need continued commitment to see it through. Understand that you may encounter challenges and frustrations along the way while building a farm safety plan, but know that the results will make your efforts worthwhile.
Show your commitment
Let everyone know you are committed to the health and safety of your workers.
Post your health and safety information (examples of which we will outline in this manual) throughout your farm, in visible locations which could include:
- Common room
Live your commitment
Celebrate a good safety record at your workplace:
- Set a goal just beyond your current record and celebrate with your workers when you achieve it.
- Recognize a worker or team for their safety record at a workplace meeting.
- Recognize workers for their ideas on improving safety.
Tips for making safety a workplace priority
- Make positive attitudes and proven safe work practices a condition of hiring.
- Make new workers aware of your safety policy as part of the hiring process.
- Make safety a part of all management, supervisor, and worker evaluations.
- Put workplace safety on the agenda at group meetings.
For the purpose of this manual, we’ve provided definitions of both
a Farm Safety Plan and a Health and Safety Program:
A farm safety plan is a farm specific, practical plan that will help you improve the safety on your farm by identifying the hazards, controls and day-to-day protocols required to stay safe. Every farm should have a farm safety plan in place. The information and processes within the plan will differ from farm-to-farm, taking into account each farm’s unique operation and size.
A farm safety plan differs from a health and safety program. The term “program” is a regulatory term defined by the OH&S legislation. A health and safety program is required by farms which employ 20 or more workers and the Act outlines in detail which items must be included in a program for your farm. For all farms with over 20 employees, their health and safety program becomes their farm safety plan.
Every farm should have a farm safety plan, regardless of its size. The details of that plan will depend on the nature of your unique farm operation. The first step in developing that personal plan begins with adopting a commitment to safety, and
that commitment comes from combining a personal and sincere obligation to the well-being of your employees and your family with good business sense.
This section will provide an overview on:
- Determining a baseline of your current workplace health and safety structure.
- The roles and responsibilities within the farm organization.
- Health and Safety Representative and an Occupational Health and Safety Committee.
- Building a unique workplace health and safety plan.
So, how do you get started? The best place is to determine where you currently stand.