Marking the half-way mark for WorkSafe Tasmania Month and the close of Mental Health Awareness Week,
the states inaugural Walk for Workplace Health and Safety saw hundreds of Tasmanians stepping away from
their desks and hitting the pavement to celebrate the importance of work health, safety and wellbeing.

WorkCover Tasmania Board member Steve Walsh said both physical and mental wellbeing was vital to
ensuring safe workplaces and that all Tasmanian workers returned home at the end of each working day.

“While statistics reveal the total number of workplace injuries in Tasmania has been steadily declining
(dropping by 26 per cent from 2010-2016), the number of mental disease injuries has actually increased,” Mr
Walsh said.

“In 2010 there were 499 mental disease injuries reported across the state and by last year that number had
actually slightly increased to 508 injuries – which is concerning.

“Thirty two per cent of mental disease injuries in 2016 were due to work pressure, followed by the second
most common cause which was workplace harassment and/or workplace bullying.

“However regular physical activity can provide positive mental health benefits and is also a major factor in
preventing a number of chronic diseases, as well as providing a wide range of economic, environmental,
physical, and social benefits.”

Mr Walsh said the benefits of a healthy workplace and workforce can include reduced absenteeism, staff
sick leave and turnover, while also increasing productivity and staff satisfaction levels.

“WorkSafe Tasmania offers a free service to assist Tasmanian business to develop and implement a health
and wellbeing program through their Work Health, Safety and Wellbeing Advisory Service. To help you take
the first step to create a healthier workplace you can request a confidential visit by an advisor by visiting
www.worksafe.tas.gov.au,” he said.

“Research shows that for every dollar invested in workplace health and wellbeing programs, there is a return
on investment of between three and six dollars.

“Ultimately, a healthy workplace just makes good business sense.”

WorkSafe Tasmania Month runs from 1-31 October 2017 and is part of a nationwide effort to raise
awareness of work health, safety and wellbeing as well as reduce work-related injury, illness and deaths.

For a copy of the WorkSafe Tasmania Month Program of Events or to register to attend an event, simply
head to the WorkSafe website at www.worksafe.tas.gov.au or phone the Helpline on 1300 366 322.
Jenna Mays, WorkSafe Tasmania