WorkSafe has launched its new strategy, with a focus on making a measurable difference to the most serious harm in New Zealand workplaces.

As the primary health and safety at work regulator, WorkSafe’s role is to influence businesses to carry out their responsibilities - and to hold them to account if they don’t.   

“Ten years on from WorkSafe’s inception, our refreshed strategy is about delivering what New Zealanders expect of their work health and safety regulator. We will work with businesses, workers, and other key players in the system to reduce harm and improve health and safety at work for everyone,” says WorkSafe’s Board Chair, Jennifer Kerr. 

The strategy defines the wider health and safety at work system (te aronga matua) and reflects our role in the system (kawa), how we will undertake that role (tikanga), where we will focus our effort (kaupapa), and how we will measure our impact (mātauranga). 

Every year 50–60 people are killed at work and 400–500 hospitalised with a serious work-related injury (acute harm), and an estimated 750-900 people die because of work-related ill health (chronic harm).   

“While these awful figures have steadily reduced over time, there is a long way to go and much work to do by everyone who can influence health and safety in our workplaces,” says Jennifer Kerr. “We also know that harm does not occur equally, and it is imperative that we remain focused on reducing these unacceptable harm inequities.” 

WorkSafe’s strategy