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Violence and aggression: how to manage risks

Australia’s first legally enforceable psychosocial hazards code of practice (the new Managing the risks of psychosocial hazards at work code of practice 2022 (PDF, 1.46 MB)) highlights the health and safety risks associated with violence and aggression at work, and the responsibilities of employers to manage psychosocial hazards.

Violence and aggression at work relates to any incident where a person in threatened, abused or assaulted in circumstances relating to their work. This can include acts of verbal or physical abuse, threats or assaults carried out by other workers, clients, patients, visitors or others. Violence and aggression at work has the potential to cause serious physical and psychological injury, and can sometimes be fatal.

Workplace Health and Safety Queensland has released a number of industry specific resources to support PCBUs and workers to manage the risk of work-related violence and aggression in key industries.

The Work-related violence and aggression in the construction industry guide (PDF, 3.43 MB) demonstrates the prevalence of these issues in construction and outlines control measures.

Construction industry claims involving work-related violence and aggression (WVA) have doubled over the past five years, and predominantly affected men under 44 years of age.

The guide provides definitions and examples of WVA, and explains who can be affected, lists prevention methods, and outlines the legal duties of PCBUs.