Does our WHS policy have to be signed and dated?
Our business operates in NSW. We have our WHS policy as a web-based document. However, we have been asked to provide signed and dated copies. Some in the organisation are under the impression that our policy must be signed and dated within 3 years. Is this correct?
There is no direct requirement for your WHS policy to be signed and dated within 3 years under the WHS Act or Regulations, as neither prescribe any method for notifying workers of such a policy.
Providing workers with your WHS policy is an effective way of complying with your overarching duty of care to workers under section 19 of the Act. Providing your WHS policy to employees via your website complies with your duty of care.
However providing your WHS policy to workers via a website may be a limited method as it does not require workers to sign anything and as a result of this, it may be difficult to prove the workers have read and understood the policy unless there is a digital record of the policy being released to the organisation via email or in hard copy first.
We recommend that you review the chapter H4 Health and Safety Policies and Procedures for more guidance.