26 September 2023

Family violence program to target mining

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The Department of Mines, Industry Regulation and Safety (DMIRS) has launched a new program aimed at addressing workplace sexual harassment and assault in the mining industry.

In a statement, the Department said the new Mental Awareness, Respect and Safety (MARS) Program would boost responses to mental health, drug and alcohol use and other health and safety issues in the industry.

The DMIRS said it would manage the MARS Program in partnership with the Mental Health Commission, the Equal Opportunity Commission and the Minister for Women’s Interests.

It said the first phase of the Program was scheduled to begin next year.

Minister for Mines and Petroleum, Bill Johnston said the safety and health of workers was a high priority.

“Every worker should be able to go to work without fear of physical or psychological harm,” Mr Johnston said.

Minister for Women’s Interests, Simone McGurk said her experience in the portfolio had made her very aware that women faced an unacceptable and disproportionate risk of sexual violence in their homes, workplaces and communities.

“The level of under-reporting of sexual assault and harassment in the mining and resources sector is completely unacceptable,” Ms McGurk said.

“The Government is acting to ensure workers — especially those working on mine sites — are safe and protected at work,” she said.

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