Background South Australian workers compensation data shows that young workers are 1.5 times more likely to be injured in the workplace and that more than 70 percent of injuries happen in the first year of employment. There is currently no minimum standard for teaching Workplace Health and Safety (WHS) in SA. Canadian development of the Passport to Safety programme focussing on WHS education provided the impetus for a multi-partner working group to be established in SA in September 2004.
Aims/Objectives/Purpose Young workers learn about their rights and responsibilities around WHS before entering the workplace for the first time and see and hear stories from their peers. There is a minimum standard of WHS training for students about to undertake work experience and/or work placement.
Methods Teachers and students took part in pre and post programme surveys regarding their WHS knowledge and a number of focus groups discussed how young people want to receive WHS information.
Results/Outcome Students who took part in the survey had an average increase in knowledge of 22 percent, with Teachers averaging a 19 percent increase. Workers compensation data indicates a reduction in young worker claims from 6044 in 2005/2006 to 4268 in 2009/2010.
Significance/Contribution to the Field Young workers are the political leaders, business owners and managers of the future by educating and engaging them in workplace safety we can create a generational change.
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