Funding to boost health and safety in WA’s mining industry

Funding worth nearly $1.2 million
Date: Monday, 28 November 2022

Funding worth nearly $1.2 million to strengthen responses to sexual harassment and respect on mine sites.

Government remains committed to building a workplace culture of respect and safety for women.

Funding forms part of the McGowan Government’s Mental Awareness, Respect and Safety (MARS) program.

Four new funding packages worth nearly $1.2 million are set to further strengthen the McGowan Government’s commitment to the safety of Western Australian mine workers.

Circle Green Community Legal will receive $335,000 to provide a triage service and social work support for people who have experienced workplace sexual harassment in the mining industry.

The free service will include social work support for people who have experienced workplace sexual harassment in the mining industry.

The Sexual Assault Resource Centre will use an $80,000 grant to develop a specialist online training package, teaching health first responders on mine sites how to use its Site Early Evidence Kits (SEEKs).

SEEK packages include an evidence collection kit, a care package and various information leaflets that help victim-survivors make informed decisions about their future.

A course will also be developed to equip participants from the mining industry with the necessary skills to conduct sensitive investigations using evidence-based psychological approaches.

It will be delivered through a partnership between PerMentis Pty Ltd (FIFO Focus), The Australian Institute of Health and Safety, WHS Foundation and The University of Western Australia, and is made possible by a $250,000 grant.

Further to this, MATES in Mining will use $525,000 of funding over a period of three years to raise awareness about suicide and mental health among Western Australian mine workers. The MATES program provides suicide prevention through onsite community development activities, and by supporting workers in need through case management and a 24/7 helpline.

The four new funding packages form part of the McGowan Government’s commitment to ensure that all workers are free from violence, harassment and disrespect in their workplaces.

For more information, visit the MARS program website.

Comments attributed to Mines and Petroleum Minister Bill Johnston:

“The new funding packages underline the McGowan Government’s commitment to eliminate violence, harassment and bullying from Western Australian workplaces.

“We are working hard to ensure all workers, particularly those in the mining sector, are safe and respected at work.

“The MARS program complements the other work we are doing to stamp out sexual harassment and sexual assault in WA’s mining industry.”

Comments attributed to Women’s Interests Minister Simone McGurk:

“Sexual violence in any workplace is unacceptable, and while we’re working with the mining industry to stamp it out, when it does happen, we want to make sure victim-survivors are supported.

“We want to attract more women to the industry and for that to occur they need to know that they will be safe, and their concerns will be taken seriously.

“These initiatives will further bolster the Government’s efforts to address safety issues that are not confined to the mining industry but are the sad reality for women everywhere.”