Catherine McGregor - diversity, honesty, courage

Catherine McGregor


8:30am - 9:00am: Registration

9:00am - 10:00am: Keynote Chief Executive - Real challenges faced by today's workplaces

In her opening address, WorkSafe Victoria’s Chief Executive Clare Amies will share some of the current priorities and future occupational health and safety challenges for Victoria in this ever-changing world of work.

Clare will then participate in a panel facilitated by 2019 Health and Safety Month Ambassador, and accomplished journalist, Anjali Rao. 

In this session Clare will be joined by fellow panellists:

  • Kirstan Corben, Executive Manager, Programs Group, VicHealth
  • Margo Lydon, CEO SuperFriend
  • Peta McCammon, Deputy Secretary, Family Violence, Justice and Social Services Coordination and Workplace Safety

The panel will discuss emerging challenges to safety in Victorian businesses and how employers can build a positive, healthy and safe workplace.

10:20am - 11:20am: Diversity, honesty, courage - The Catherine McGregor story

Catherine McGregor is a freelance broadcaster, cricket commentator and author. She is also Australia's most prominent transgender woman. She was Queenslander of the Year in 2016 for her service as an advocate for the transgender community and for her wider contribution to understanding of gender variance and diversity.

Sharing her own inspirational experiences, Catherine will discuss the rising challenge of mental health issues in the workforce, the importance of being able to adapt and overcome adversity and the impact of technology on workplaces and workplace safety. Renowned for her moving speeches, Catherine will challenge the way we think about what it means to work safely. This is a session not to be missed.

11:40am - 12:40pm: There are five sessions running at the same time, you can only attend one

Option 1: Mobile case management and engaging a treating health practitioner

Mobile Case Management was implemented across the Victorian workers compensation scheme in 2017. Allianz Mobile Case Manager Aidan shares his experience of meeting with a worker, their treating health practitioner and their employer and how collaboration can support achieving a safe and sustainable return-to-work outcome.

Aidan will discuss the tools available to support this interaction and will share case studies to illustrate how assistance via the Mobile Case Management intervention can support progress in return-to-work and recovery on a complex claim. Aidan has previously worked as an Occupational Rehabilitation consultant and within an employer and its injury management function and leverages this experience in responding to the needs of all stakeholders.

Option 2: Raise It! Conversations about sexual harassment and workplace equality

Raise It! is a pilot project by the Victorian Equal Opportunity and Human Rights Commission testing ‘what works’ with addressing sexual harassment and gendered discrimination at work.

The project aims to start new, constructive conversations in the workplace to challenge discrimination and its root causes, and build confidence and competence to have safe conversations about sexual harassment.

Project resources include digital conversation starter toolkits, a communications plan and kit, and an empathetic education program to support participants to talk about: 

  • Preventing and responding to sexual harassment
  • Discrimination relating to pregnancy and parental leave
  • Access to flexible work requests

This session includes evaluation findings from the pilot period, the new Raise It! packages and learnings from collaborating with seven diverse pilot sites:

  • Arts Centre Melbourne
  • Ambulance Victoria
  • Games Development Association of Australia and The Arcade
  • Plan International Australia
  • Monash City Council
  • Museums Victoria
  • Yarra City Council

Option 3: Fatigue - beyond rostering

When looking to control fatigue risk, procedures that merely look at rostering principles are insufficient for many organisations. We need to consider elements of the work, such as cognitive, emotional, and physical workload, as well as environmental factors such as lighting, heat, and noise. 

Fatigue risk should be measured and controls reviewed to reduce the risk so far as reasonably practicable. This session explores elements that should be considered when developing a Fatigue Risk Management System (FRMS) in a real life context.

Option 4: Systems thinking in action - preventing patient handling injuries

Patient handling tasks continue to cause a significant number of injuries within Australian hospitals, despite a substantial investment in equipment, training and workspace design. 

The PHIRES Toolkit has been developed to help OHS practitioners investigate why the risk controls for patient handling failed to prevent an injury to staff, and then identify effective strategies to prevent future similar injuries.  

The PHIRES Toolkit is based on best practice for incident investigation and systems thinking. This presentation will provide an overview of the PHIRES Toolkit, case study applications, and practitioner reflections on the benefits of using a systems thinking approach.

Option 5: Psychosocial hazards and the safe system of work

Psychological injuries seldom receive the preventative actions they deserve, and are often poorly managed. These injuries however, are not the only outcomes affected by the way in which work is designed. 

This session looks at how psychosocial aspects of work are important for other types of hazards, and injuries typically associated with them.

12.40pm – 1.30pm: Lunch

Please note, from 1.10pm – 1.30pm, the Coles Choir will be performing in the Plenary Room.

1.30pm – 2.30pm: There are five sessions running at the same time, you can only attend one

Option 1: Secondary mental injury and support services

Learn how WorkSafe is approaching the increase in physically injured workers who develop a secondary mental injury. Find out which individuals  are most at risk, the risk factors that an employer can look out for and how to respond. 

WorkSafe will also outline the supports services available including Occupational Rehabilitation and dedicated psychological resources at WorkSafe Agents.

Option 2: A sustainable transport & logistics mental health and wellbeing program

The impact on mental health and wellbeing is presenting very significant issues for transport and logistics organisations. This industry also comprises many vulnerable Victorian working populations including outworkers, older workers, industries in transition, and frontline workers. It also has long held views on mental illness that can run contrary to the desired outcomes. 

The VTA program is designed to promote mental health and well-being as an integrated way to effectively address this resistance to change, through changing cultures, organisational factors and practices in transport and logistics workplaces. The VTA project is looking to create long-term, industry-wide change through organisational improvement and prevention strategies.

Option 3: What you need to know about Silicosis

Silica dust is a hazardous substance that can have a debilitating effect. Silicosis occurs when fine crystalline dust scars the lungs. Symptoms including shortness of breath, coughing, fatigue and weight loss. 

In severe cases, silicosis can require a lung transplant or lead to death. Workers across many industries can be exposed to the disease. Hear experts discuss the current situation and future plans to address the issue.

Option 4: Informing Health and Safety Leadership

Work health and safety (WHS) is a priority issue for many organisations. Yet all too often, operational and strategic decisions are undermined by a reliance on inadequate or poor quality data in the form of misunderstood KPIs that are unreliable or wrongly informing decisions.

Join this session to learn  how to measure and analyse WHS performance using lead and lag KPIs to inform effective health and safety leadership.

Option 5: Workplace mental health: WorkWell in action

Learn about the innovative WorkWell projects happening in Victorian workplaces to prevent mental injury and promote positive mental health and wellbeing. 

Discover how WorkSafe's online WorkWell Toolkit can support employers to create sustainable change in the workplace.

2:50pm - 3:50pm: There are five sessions running at the same time, you can only attend one

Option 1: Mental health claims in the workplace - pre and post event

Jacqui Stanford is a WorkSafe Clinical Panel psychologist supporting Agents in the management of mental injury claims. This includes direct peer-to-peer contact with psychologists and general practitioners to educate on the health benefits of work and the various return-to-work and recovery programs across the workers compensation scheme.

This session explores how an employer can engage with an employee with a mental illness, including how to support them in the RTW and recovery process pre and post a claim.

Frank Imbesi from Ayres Management Services will present on the support that an Occupational Rehabilitation provider is able to offer and his experience in face-to-face engagement with a worker and their employer as part of a mediation support service WorkSafe offer via the Agents.

Option 2: Case study - Bradken Resources

On 22 July 2014, Bradken Resources employee Peter Watson was tragically burned to death when a metal casting weighing over 200kg at a temperature approaching 600 degrees celsius fell through the cabin windscreen of the skid steer loader he was driving.

In this case study, you'll learn about the series of events that followed, from WorkSafe's investigation to the prosecution of Bradken Resources for failing to provide a safe plant.

Option 3: Case study - WorkSafe's high risk dangerous goods project

This session shares insight into the unprecedented clean-up of over 20 million litres of illegally stored dangerous goods waste from Melbourne's northern suburbs.

WorkSafe is leading a multi-agency taskforce to oversee the clean-up of vast amounts of dangerous goods waste which pose a significant risk to the public and triggered emergency action as the safety regulator.

Option 4: Leadership in the workplace: The practices that support and constrain safe working practices

Interventions to reduce workplace injury have traditionally focused on the behaviour of individual workers and the environment in which they work. This approach is driven by the understanding that injury is a result of error and failures.

A body of research has established that safety is influenced by a system of factors, therefore intervention should align with this knowledge to optimise prevention efforts.

This session will focus on the role that leaders play in conveying the importance of safe working practices and creating a culture where safety is valued and prioritised. Sharon will focus on the leadership practices that both support and constrain safe working behaviour and intervention designed to mitigate risk.

Option 5: The wicked problems of workplace safety: stress and bullying

Identifying stress and bullying is an ongoing challenge for organisations of all sizes. Employers need to identify the areas of psychological risk in their organisation, assess those risks, consult with employees in developing a plan to minimise the risk, and then monitor and revise the controls to make sure they are effective.

This involves more than merely having a bullying policy. Organisations need to address issues like workload, supervisor support, role clarity, and relationship management. This session will use real life case studies to demonstrate how you can address stress and bullying in your organisation.