Young workers: Safety basics

Your young workers need special attention.

Date last updated

Sunday 09 Feb 2020

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  • Who are young workers?
  • High-risk industries for young workers
  • Making work safer for young workers

Young Worker - Kitchen TV Commercial

Young workers are a very vulnerable group of employees, with injury rates out of proportion with other worker age groups.

Under Victoria’s health and safety laws you must provide and maintain a working environment for your employees that is safe and free of risks to health, so far as is reasonably practicable. Employees may include contractors and agency staff.

Research shows that many young workers don’t get proper training. They don’t always understand their rights and responsibilities, and don’t see themselves as a high-risk group.

Who are young workers?

Young workers are aged 15-24. They are often part-time and casual workers. They may be apprentices and trainees.

High-risk industries for young workers

  • construction
  • retail
  • hospitality
  • manufacturing

Making work safer for young workers

  • Consider your young workers’ age and experience as a risk factor when identifying hazards and risks in your workplace.
  • Make sure they get a proper induction.
  • Give them information, instruction and training to be able to do their work safely.
  • Make sure they are properly supervised.
  • Encourage them to speak up. Listen to and act on their health and safety concerns.
  • Promote a culture of safety.

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