Obesity in the workplace!

Did you know that 28% of Australians are classified as obese (and a further 36% classified as overweight).  Obesity is now one of the biggest issues that employers face.

An employer must by law eliminate the risk of a person injuring themselves or someone else and that includes in respect of a worker whose weight could be a hazard or health and safety risk.  Failure to do so could cost the employer dearly in fines or compensation claims.

An employer is now legally required to play a role in tackling workplace health issues such as obesity.  The workplace is seen as a major contributing factor to a person’s weight and an employer is legally obliged to ensure that they are minimising those causal risks and addressing the weight issue.

It has been determined that obese workers take 88% more sick leave and that overweight employees are far more prone to health problems such as cardiovascular disease, type 2 diabetes, back pain, mental health problems and general fatigue.  Obesity is associated with a 25% higher risk of work related injury and medical claim costs and 5.55 times greater for obese employees.

If your employer has not adequately considered a workers health issues, an employee may have a workers compensation claim that can be made.

If you would like further information, call Peter Moore, Compensation Lawyer on 4324 7699.