The Occupational Health and Safety Act (2004) applies to all workplaces, as do the regulations and most of the Codes of Practice (note, at the moment, the codes are to be considered as guidance documents contributing to the 'state of knowledge').
However, some regulations and codes are more likely to be relevant in offices - for example the Manual Handling Regulations and Code of Practice. Others are probably not very relevant at all, for example the Confined Spaces or the regs on Major Hazard Facilities.
Other regulations might be relevant in certain situations in offices, for example the Hazardous Substances Regulations, or even the Asbestos Regulations (when offices are being refurbished).
For more information on this, check these pages on our website:
- Overview of OHS and related legislation in Victoria: This page provides an overview of all the OHS and related legislation, including a list of regulations and codes of practice. A brief description of the regulations and codes under the OHS Act is also provided.
- A more detailed summary of the various sections of the OHS Act
- The 2007 consolidated OHS Regulations (each chapter is summarised)
- On this site:
- WorkSafe Victoria publications, for example:
- Officewise - A guide to health and safety in the office. This publication covers many office related OHS issues.
- Fitness Ball is not suitable as a chair - this Guidance Note also provides advice on sitting posture and the design of workplace chairs.
- From WorkCover NSW, a guide: Health and Safety in the Office
- Comcare has a Virtual Office web tool that provides a range of information on office-based hazards. It includes links to Commonwealth OHS regulatory and guidance material that may be used in the development of OHS policies and procedures.
- 'Building Air Quality': A guide for building owners and facility managers [pdf] - this is a US NIOSH publication which provides lots of information on potential contaminants, etc. It is a 228 page pdf document.
- From the Trade Union Congress supported Hazards Magazine, resources on Computer Workstations including links to international on-line checklists and research tools.
- From the UK's HSE - a sample risk assessment for a general office, providing useful advice to reps and workers.
Last amended July, 2014