Do I need to pay my employees when there is an emergency at work?

For many businesses, accidents and events such as these seem unimaginable. But have you considered how you would manage such a situation if it happened at your workplace? Do you know what you would do if your employees were involved in an accident similar to what was experienced today?

Pay during emergency events

If your employees, like many employees today, were unable to attend work due to matters outside of your control (i.e. emergency services prevented you from opening the workplace, or there had been a natural disaster) do you know if you have to pay your employees?

In situations similar to that outlined above, employers can send employees home, or advise employees that there is no need for them to attend work. This is known as a stand down. A stand down can only happen however if the reasons for the stand down were outside the employer’s control. Additionally, employees are not entitled to be paid for a stand down.

Work, Health and Safety

From a Work Health and Safety perspective, have you considered/explained to your employees an appropriate evacuation plan? Do you have an adequate risk management system in order to ensure the health and safety of your workers?

Organisations have a positive obligation under the respective WHS legislation to ensure both the physical and mental health of their workers.

In order to avoid liability in the event of a workplace accident or incident, you must be able to demonstrate that you had taken all reasonable steps to ensure a safe work environment. This includes undertaking a process of risk management whereby workplace hazards are identified, as well as complying with all applicable WHS legislation and any specific regulations regarding safe work practices in your industry.

The WHS Management capability within HRA Cloud contains a number of tailored workflows that allow you to identify potential workplace hazards, record details of any incidents that do arise and manage an individual’s return to work following a workplace accident.

For more information, clients should contact the HR Assured team. If you’d like more information about the benefits of becoming an HR Assured client contact us today for an informal chat.