Roles and Responsibilities
The OH&S Act makes self-employed farmers, farm managers, employers, employees and contractors all responsible for safety on their farm. This includes people who may be working the farm business or working on their own property. Each person working on the farm is responsible, to the extent of their authority, for the health and safety of everyone on the farm. This is known as the
Internal Responsibility System (IRS).
While the IRS is based on the principle that all parties at the farm share the responsibility for health and safety and for creating, implementing and maintaining a safe and healthy workplace, the employer has the greatest authority over the workplace and has a greater ability to effect change and therefore the greatest responsibility.
The OH&S Act details responsibilities of employers, supervisors, and employees. Generally, the legislation requires that the employer do everything he/she can reasonably do to protect the health and safety of their employees in the workplace. In turn, employees are expected to take all precautions to protect themselves and others at the workplace.