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Ennis, Clare, Ireland, 2007/03/29 - The long-awaited new ‘Health and Safety Authority (HSA) Code of Practice on Workplace Bullying’ will be launched by Mr Tony Killeen, Minister for Labour Affairs next week - entemp.ie.
The long-awaited new ‘Health and Safety Authority (HSA) Code of Practice on Workplace Bullying’ will be launched by Mr Tony Killeen, Minister for Labour Affairs at the offices of Department of Enterprise Trade and Employment, Kildare Street, Dublin on Wednesday next (10am, April 4th 2007). The publication follows less than a year after Minster Killeen recommended that the Health and Safety Authority update the current Code and bring it in line with the ‘2005 Safety, Health and Welfare at Work Act’.
“The new Code provides that, in the first instance, complaints of workplace bullying should be resolved in the workplace”, according to Minister Killeen.
He continued, “With a view to assisting prompt organisational responses to reduce the negative effects of bullying, the new Code of Practice from the HSA will give a clearly outlined guide for all concerned on the best way to react to bullying complaints, informally, using mediation and problem solving approaches and where this is not effective, applying a formal approach and independent, transparent investigation (access to Rights Commissioner under Industrial Relations Acts)”.
“Essentially, if complaints of workplace bullying are not resolved internally in the workplace, the independent and transparent investigation by a Rights Commissioner, as proposed by the draft Code of Practice, will not be available to certain public or civil servants such as teachers”, Minister Killeen stated.
The Minister said, however, that he had requested Ms. Mary Hanafin, Minister for Education and Science to introduce alternative measures to ensure the inclusion of teachers in the appeals process.
“This is most important and necessary since the research for the 2001 Taskforce Report on Workplace Bullying found that bullying risk levels were 56% higher in the Public than the Private sector (9.5% compared with 6.1% respectively). It would seem from the interim figures obtained from the recent ESRI research, that the incidence of bullying in the education sector is still high”, he added.
Civil Servants, meanwhile, are covered by the policy developed in consultation with staff unions, which is designed to be compliant with the codes of practice of the HSA, the LRC and Equality Authority.
“As regards other public servants, it is a matter for the Minister of their parent Departments to decide on appropriate procedures and policies to put in place to deal with bullying in the workplace”, Minister Killeen concluded.
The ‘Health and Safety Authority (HSA) Code of Practice on Workplace Bullying’ follows on from the December 2006 launch of the draft “Code of Practice for Employers and Employees on the Prevention and Resolution of Bullying at Work”, which has since been the subject of a public consultation process. The HSA has analysed the submissions received on the draft Code and the Authority’s resultant proposals have been received for consideration and consent to publication.
About Minister Killeen
- Minister Killeen is available for interview and may be contacted on 0035387-2525304 or tony_killeen[.]entemp.ie.
- Mr. Tony Killeen was appointed Minister of State at the Department of Enterprise, Trade and Employment on the 29th September 2004. Political Record: Chairman of the Joint Oireachtas Committee on Education and Science 2002-2004. Member Committee on Procedure and Privileges. Former Chair of the Oireachtas Committee on Members' Interests in Dáil Éireann. Member of the British-Irish Parliamentary Body. Member of Clare County Council 1985-1997 (Chairman 1989-1991, Vice-Chairman 1987-89). Chairman Co. Clare VEC (1991-1994). Former National Chairman of Fianna Fáil Councillors Association. Former member of Management Boards of Killaloe and Shannon Community Schools and Limerick R.T.C. Founder member Shannon Status Committee and Chairman 1989-1991.