The Gap between Law and Practice When Workers are Silent Witnesses to Workplace Violence: Evidence from the Health Sector

Journal of Health Safety and Environment, 30 1: 9-22

Posted: 27 Jun 2015

See all articles by Paul Harpur

Paul Harpur

University of Queensland - T.C. Beirne School of Law

Date Written: 2014

Abstract

Workforce participation can result in the detection of health and safety hazards. Workplace culture can confound the operation of workforce participation. This paper will analyse the operation of occupational health and safety workforce participation by analysing the Australian harmonised Work Health and Safety Act 2011. The existence of extensive provisions ensuring consultation and victimisation protection has not resulted in a culture of participation. This paper analyses this problem through considering evidence from the health sector and violence against nurses. Rather than participating in detecting and managing risks, nurses and hospitals operate in a culture of silence. This paper analyses the causes of this culture of silence and promotes a regulatory intervention that can help redress some of the root causes of this regulatory failure.

JEL Classification: k00

Suggested Citation

Harpur, Paul David, The Gap between Law and Practice When Workers are Silent Witnesses to Workplace Violence: Evidence from the Health Sector (2014). Journal of Health Safety and Environment, 30 1: 9-22, Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2623361

Paul David Harpur (Contact Author)

University of Queensland - T.C. Beirne School of Law ( email )

Brisbane, Queensland 4072
Australia

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