Occupational health and safety
This year saw the Museum's occupational health and safety (OHS) management system further integrated into daily operations. As part of this integration, the Museum maintains a full complement of trained health and safety representatives (HSRs), deputy HSRs, first aid officers and fire wardens at all sites. Other measures continued or implemented included:
- training courses for managers and supervisors to help emphasise their roles and responsibilities within the Museum's OHS management system
- OHS and risk induction presentations for new employees
- regular presentations for visitor hosts to build on the work of the HSRs and maintain awareness of OHS responsibilities
- training in correct workstation use, accompanied exercise charts and workstation setup demonstrations
- increased monitoring of use of the Museum's contractor site book, which is aimed at improving contractor safety awareness
- training in manual handling for visitor hosts involved with setting up staging for events and functions.
The Museum's OHS Committee met four times during the year and minutes of all meetings were placed on the intranet and staff noticeboards. The committee comprises management representatives, health and safety representatives from four designated work groups, the General Manager Operations and the safety and risk manager.
A medical surveillance program was implemented for staff who work with the small number of potentially hazardous substances identified in NHC material. The program involves annual retesting of the staff members.
As part of the ongoing program of risk reduction in areas of high visitor usage, safety improvements were made to the Garden of Australian Dreams. These included the application of non-slip surfacing to the mound and surrounding areas, as well as the installation of rubber edging around parts of the water feature.
Staff, visitors or contractors reported a total of 94 injuries during the year, a decrease over the 134 incidents reported last year. Four serious personal injuries and one dangerous occurrence were reported to Comcare in accordance with section 68 of the Occupational Health and Safety (Commonwealth Employment) Act 1991.
There were no fatalities or provisional improvement notices recorded during the period.
Indemnities and insurance
In accordance with section 16 of the Commonwealth Authorities and Companies Act (Report of Operations) Orders 2002, which requires reporting on indemnities and insurance premiums for officers, the Museum confirms that it has:
- director's and officers' liability insurance cover through Comcover, the Commonwealth self-managed fund
- not entered into any deeds of indemnity in relation to directors and officers' liability.
As part of its annual insurance renewal process, the Museum reviewed its insurance coverage to ensure that it remained appropriate for its activities. The Museum's risk management strategies and activities resulted in it qualifying to receive a discount offered under the Comcover Risk Management Benchmarking program.
The Museum's Client Service Charter is available to the public as a pamphlet and on the Museum's website. The Client Service Charter is contained in Appendix 11.
During the year, the Museum received more than 1200 written comments from visitors regarding services, programs, exhibitions, the building and facilities. Ninety-three per cent of the feedback was positive. Most negative comments related to exhibitions and exhibition content, with several comments received about the Review of Exhibitions and Public Programs.
The Museum uses visitor feedback to improve its services and amenities. Examples in 2003-2004 include:
- In direct response to feedback from visitors, the lighting in the temporary exhibition Rare Trades was rectified within 24 hours of the exhibition's opening.
- In the development of text panels for the Outlawed! exhibition, legibility of type was improved in response to previous comments from visitors.
- Considerable work was completed during the year to improve the wayfinding map and information for visitors.