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News update
18/07/2024
News update

The NDIS Commission seeks feedback on the Workforce Capability Framework

An independent survey from KPMG is open until 24 July to evaluate the effectiveness and use of the framework.
News update
18/07/2024
News update

NDS joins calls for accessible housing standards in NSW and WA

State governments’ failure to sign up to basic design standards for new homes discriminates against people with disability.

Report shows actions to address work-related violence in disability accommodation

A meeting of three people, one looking concerned.

11/07/2024

What you need to know 

  • A recent WorkSafe Victoria study has examined the contributing factors of work-related violence in disability accommodation.
  • Addressing work-related violence is complex and needs understanding and action across the disability sector.
  • The actions for governments, regulators, organisations, and workforce are interconnected and need coordination to ensure services are high quality and safe for people with disability as well as workers.

Throughout the 2023–24 financial year, WorkSafe Victoria, partnering with NDS and Queensland Institute of Technology, undertook a systems analysis of work-related violence in the residential disability sector. The study, A Systems Thinking Analysis of Work-related Violence in the Australian Residential Disability Sector, examined the problem and contributory factors, and identified actions for systemic change. The research included a literature review, a large cross-sectional survey of the workforce, semi-structured interviews, and workshops with stakeholders.

The research used Rasmussen’s (1997) systems-thinking, risk management framework, which is widely used for understanding and preventing incidents in work systems. The researchers followed five guiding principles:

  1. Shared responsibility for safety
  2. Multiple, interacting factors
  3. Communication
  4. Pressures in the system
  5. Erosion of risk controls.

The value of a systems-thinking framework is the findings go deep into the interconnected responsibilities of government, funders, regulators, organisations, service management, frontline supervisors, and the frontline workforce.

Four contributing themes emerged from the analysis of the data and consultations, pointing to  
where actions can be taken to address work-related violence:

  • staff capability
  • the physical environment
  • safety culture and safety leadership
  • resident compatibility.

The report is can be downloaded in pdf form and there is also an infographic (pdf) that summarises the research.

WorkSafe Victoria is developing a website with the final report, infographic, project documents and insights from a recent forum hosted by NDS. The forum brought together people from throughout the system to unpack priorities and consider actions to address this urgent safety issue.
 
This report is a detailed analysis of the complexity of addressing work-related violence and, importantly, offers the sector actions to consider. The Victorian Networks will be discussing the report in upcoming network meetings and communities of practice.
 
Reference 

Rasmussen, J. (1997). Risk management in a dynamic society: a modelling problem. Safety Science, 27(2), 183-213.  https://doi.org/10.1016/S0925-7535(97)00052-0 

Contact information
Fiona Still, Quality & Safeguards Lead - VIC, 03 8341 4341, submit enquiry/feedback