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A guide to safe workplace celebrations

Our friends at NatRoad have put together some quick guidelines for looking after your employees during workplace parties this festive season. 

Working hard throughout the year is part of our industry, just like celebrating the end of the year with your team and workmates.

Safety in the workplace is everyone’s responsibility. Every person has a general duty of care to be safe. The employer has a primary duty of care and must take all reasonable steps to ensure that all persons in the workplace are safe.

The workplace includes a work-sponsored Christmas or End of Year Party, even if attendance is voluntary, held out of regular hours and away from the usual office or workplace; the following still applies:

  • Company Policies
  • Legislation on Bullying, Sexual Harassment and Discrimination
  • Work Cover
  • Health and Safety Regulations

Avoid any unpleasant incidents by following these practical guidelines:

1. Set the expectation: remind your team about expected standards of conduct/policies applicable.

2. Plan an event at a location that everyone can enjoy, including dietary requirements.

3. Invitations should set start and finish times, after parties are generally not part of the workplace.

4. Make this clear in advance – if employees need to arrange their own transport.

5. Provide non-alcoholic or low-alcoholic beverages as well as plenty of food.

6. Control the service of alcohol: avoid self-serve, unlimited alcohol, and drinking games or shots.

7. Remind managers to behave appropriately and to subtly control any inappropriate behaviour during the event.

8. After the event, if you get a complaint, deal with it promptly like any other complaint.

9. Investigate as required and take the appropriate disciplinary action.

10. Have fun, take many photos, and celebrate and share the memories.

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