By Carlen Lowe

Christmas and end of year celebrations and are upon us again and in addition to organising a memorable party, employers should be aware of their continuing obligations to their workers.

The High Court case of Comcare v PVYW [2013] HCA 41 reinforced an employer’s liability for injuries in such situations where an employee is induced or encouraged to be present at a particular place or to engage in a particular activity.

A responsible employer should:

  • Ensure staff are familiar with harassment/bullying and discrimination policies prior to events;
  • Intervene if they witness any inappropriate behaviour;
  • Be responsible for the safe service of alcohol as well as other health and safety precautions at the venue;
  • Remind employees the use of illegal drugs and/or the excessive consumption of alcohol is prohibited; and
  • Plan for safe transportation after the party.

Once everyone is clear on their responsibilities, the celebrations can be enjoyed by all.

Merry Christmas from the team at BTLawyers.