SafeWork SA and ReturnToWorkSA
A safe, well-designed and healthy work environment can have a positive impact on an individual’s physical and psychological health. Research has also highlighted that healthy workers are safer and more productive workers, contributing to better outcomes for the workplace, community and economy.
The mandate, ability and expertise required to address work-related risk and protective factors to health and wellbeing do not sit in any one sector and therefore require a partnership approach to create the physical, social and political environment which supports healthy, safe and thriving workplaces in South Australia.
SafeWork SA (SWSA) was established as a Public Health Partner Authority in 2016, reflecting their vested interest in protecting the health and wellbeing of South Australians by reducing the incidence and risk associated with work-related death, injury and illness. With research highlighting that poor health increases the likelihood of industrial incidents and injuries, SWSA was well placed to become a Public Health Partner Authority (PHPA) and have since achieved a number of positive outcomes towards improving and protecting the health and wellbeing of South Australian workers.
ReturnToWorkSA (RTWSA) is a statutory authority with the mandate to administer the Return to Work Act 2014, including providing work injury insurance and regulating the South Australian Return to Work scheme. Similar to SWSA, RTWSA has a vested interest in reducing the incidence and risk associated with injury, illness and disease. In May 2020, ReturnToWorkSA was formalised as a Public Health Partner Authority and joined SafeWork SA under a tripartite PHPA Agreement to support healthy, safe and thriving workplaces in South Australia.
SafeWork SA, ReturnToWorkSA and Wellbeing SA aim to work in partnership to achieve the following outcomes:
- Increase SA workplace capability to support and manage workplace health and wellbeing
- Take preventative action against current and emerging work-related health and wellbeing risk factors and issues
- Identify and support high risk groups
This Agreement also supports a strong partnership approach more broadly across other government and non-government organisations. The Collaborative Partnership for Workplace Health and Wellbeing in South Australia has been established under this PHPA Agreement. The Collaborative has ten government and non-government members and is leading a strategic and consistent statewide response to workplace health, safety and wellbeing in SA.