Summit focuses on cultural change in mining workplaces

Hon Bill Johnston MLA, Industrial Relations Minister

The WA Government has launched two anti-harassment programs as part of a strategy to create safer workplaces and drive cultural change within Western Australia’s resources sector. 

The programs were launched in front of around 1100 people at the Mining Industry Summit: Driving Respect on 1 August at Optus Stadium.

The summit is part of the State Government’s response to the Enough is Enough (EIE) report published in June 2022. 

Attendees included board members, mine managers, health and safety representatives, supervisors and safety professionals to “educate and empower leaders to take meaningful action on safe and respectful workplaces”. 

Keynote speakers included former Sex Discrimination Commissioner Kate Jenkins AO, international workplace culture expert Dr Dean Laplonge and Australian organisational behaviour and leadership development expert Professor Sharon Parker who provided insights into the initial findings from the Mental Awareness, Respect and Safety (MARS) program landmark study. 

The SPEAK UP, REPORT IT campaign is designed to help workplace sexual harassment victims and includes a better resourced hotline to report unacceptable behaviour. And the 12-month Respect in Mining pilot is expected to be launched early 2024 across Gold Fields Australia’s WA operation. It aims to increase awareness of the impact of gender inequality on women’s safety and the impact of gendered division in leadership.

“Everyone has a right to feel safe and supported at work. Workplace sexual harassment is not a women’s issue – it is a societal issue that all organisations, employers and individuals have a responsibility to address,” says Hon Sue Ellery MLC, Women’s Interests Minister. 

“This is an important milestone on the journey that we’re all on. This is not the be all and end all.

“There’s no silver bullet of getting 1000 people together to share what works best but it is an important milestone,” says Hon Sue Ellery MLC. 

“We can reflect on the work that’s been done to date since 2021 when we refocused our efforts on this issue. We can look at what is working best, what is not working, learn from that and take that back to our respective workplaces.” 

To be part of WA’s peak business organisation, get in touch via 1300 422 492 or [email protected]. 

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