Health & Safety

All those who go to work should return home healthy and safe

Key Resources

Below are templates you can use to set up your health and Safety Folder (Word versions of these in Drop box folder below)

Below are links to a drop box with all of the health and safety resources and templates, including a folder of shared resources from parishes that you may find useful in developing your own. If you have something that you think works well, contact Andrew Metcalfe and we will put it in this area.

Health and Safety Articles (from Ko Te Tonga kei te Karaka – The South Calling)

Notifiable Events

See Section 2 of the Templates above

Notifiable events can be distressing for all involved. After an incident or accident you should contact the Registrar on 03 488-0821 as soon as possible. All notifications to WorkSafe will be made by the Registrar unless they are unavailable, in which case you should contact the archdeacon for your parish or the Bishop’s Office. The Registrar can also provide other aid and advice as appropriate.

The health and safety regulator must be notified when certain work-related events (notifiable events) occur.  Only serious events are intended to be notified and these trigger requirements to preserve the site, notify the regulator and keep records.

A notifiable event is any of the following events that arise from work:

  • a death
  • a notifiable illness or injury or
  • a notifiable incident.

See Section 2: Notifiable Events for more infomration and links


If a Serious Incident Occurs

Following any serious incident that involves injury to lay workers, clergy, volunteers and visitors, or others who access and use our premises, including contractors, or any other dangerous occurrence:

  • arrange for first aid assistance, or the emergency services if necessary
  • immediately notify the Registrar or, if unavailable, the Archdeacon (see note above)
  • do not disturb the scene of the incident except to deal with continuing risk to people or property in case of investigation by WorkSafe
  • as soon as possible, complete an Accident/Incident Report

Video Resources

A video produced by the Suzy Lamplugh Trust in the UK focusing on Safety when working in isolated settings e.g. by yourself at work, travelling from A to B and so on. It is a longer watch (and apologies for the picture quality), but the content is very helpful for any who are in lone working situations or have concerns about your safety in the community.

First 7 minutes: working from office-home… making things secure

7-9 minutes: working out of hours (alone)

9-13 minutes: visiting someone in their home

13 minutes into video: advice for using personal alarms

16 minutes: advice for when out and about

34:30 minutes: advice for when driving

Anyone who serves the church in paid or unpaid ministry has a privilege of being with others at key moments of their lives. At times, we can encounter people under a great deal of stress… and it can put ourselves and possibly even them at risk.

Here is a video of a Zoom training session carried out on 27 June 2023. This is just over 42 minutes long. For more infomration and resources, visit here

A video with useful tips on how to prevent arson, part of our Health and Safety video series

A video from the UK with a helpful overview on H&S

A longer (23 minute) video on the Health and Safety at Work Act in NZ.

Why Do This?

The safety of all members of the Church community is of paramount importance. The Diocese of Dunedin believes that effective Health and Safety management is essential to a successful church; ethically, morally, spiritually, legally and financially.

The Health and Safety at Work Act 2015 (HSW Act) came into force in April 2016. A guiding principle of HSW Act is that workers and other persons should be given the highest level of protection against harm to their health, safety, and welfare from work risks as is reasonably practicable. The main purpose of HSW Act is to provide for a balanced framework to secure the health and safety of workers and workplaces.

An introduction to HSW Act produced by WorkSafe can be found here.

While the HSW Act is clear that health and safety is everyone’s responsibility, it is also clear that key organisations and the officers of those organisations owe a duty of care not to expose people to risks. Ministry units are responsible to do whatever is reasonably practicable to ensure the health and safety of all people who come into contact with the Church.

In 2022 Safeguarding policies and procedures were implemented to ensure that all vulnerable people (children and adults) are safe in our faith communities. 1

Detailed guidelines for understanding the HSW Act, procedures and templates have now been developed and are available for you to downloaded, as well as a copy of the Safeguarding Policy. 

If you need any assistance please contact the Registrar including support with how to make a Worksafe notification should you need to.

Health and Safety Responsibilities

New Zealand Health and Safety laws place responsibilities on parishes, employers, and employees:

Parishes/Employers must:

  • Provide a safe workplace/place of worship
  • Systematically identify and control hazards
  • Monitor the workplace
  • Develop emergency procedures
  • Provide training and supervision
  • Provide all the necessary information
  • Involve employees in health and safety
  • Record, report and investigate accidents
  • Protect the health and safety of contractors (ask to see their health and safety plan)
  • Establish a health and safety committee to meet regularly (this can be incorporated into an existing meeting schedule).

Employees must

  • Ensure that they do not harm themselves or anyone else by anything that they do or don’t do at work
  • Report hazards and accidents
  • Follow safe working procedures
  • Ear the correct protective clothing (do not wear loose clothing)
  • Use any protective equipment required
  • Don’t do anything to endanger yourself or other people.

Useful links

Worksafe NZ is a recommended source for Health and Safety Information: . They also have tools for helping support health and safety:  including a video that gives basic facts around the latest legislation:

They also have resources looking at bullying in the workplace as well as how to deal with sexual harassment and supporting mentally healthy work:

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