SafeWork SA

You are here

Go to top of page

Young Workers Action Plan

This action plan identifies how and where young people enter the workforce and what we will do to contribute to the reduction of young worker injuries across South Australia.

It is important that young people understand their work health and safety responsibilities when they enter the workforce. As new workers they may lack the experience and knowledge to understand risks and so it is essential they are properly inducted, trained and supervised so they can work safely. As our future leaders, we aim to build their capability so they can become influencers of safe workplaces.

Safework SA will work with young people, the education sectors, training providers, and industry and government agencies to improve health and safety outcomes for young workers.

Young Workers injured 2014-17

young workers injured 2014-17

Common types of injuries

common types of injuries
common types of injuries


  • Body stressing
  • Being hit by moving objects
  • Trips, slips and falls
  • Hitting objects with part of the body
  • Mental stress
  • Heat, electricity and other environmental factors

Who is being hurt the most

who is being hurt the most
who is being hurt the most

Where young people are working and what they are doing

where young people are working and what they are doing
where young people are working and what they are doing

In what capacity

  • Part time
  • Casual
  • Apprentices
  • Trainees
  • Work experience placements

Support networks

  • Secondary schools - teachers, VET/Work placement coordinators
  • Tertiary institutions - lecturers, trainers
  • Group training organisations - fields officers, trainers
  • Job network providers - career advisors, trainers

Psychological injury statement

Despite a low percentage of psychological injury claims being lodged, we are aware that mental health and illness is an issue that requires attention.

While family, extended family and peers are important sources of personal support, young people require additional emotional and psychological supports in the current labour market environment.

Research points to the role that schools and employers might play in working closely with young people to motivate, engage and manage the job expectations of young employees and future jobseekers.


The Smith Family Research Report

September 2014


Visit or call us on 1300 365 255 to book a free work health and safety advisor visit at a time and place that suits you.

Strategic Outcomes

These strategic outcomes have been derived from the national Safe Work Australia Strategic Plan and South Australia's priority work health and safety focus areas.

Health and safe by design

  • Structures, plant and substances are designed to eliminate or minimise hazards and risks before they are introduced into the workplace.
  • Work, work processes and systems of work are designed and managed to eliminate or minimise hazards and risks.


  • Everyone in the workplace is aware of youth development stages and are informed to make sound decisions on the tasks and conditions needed to ensure that young workers are able to work safely.


  • Governments use their investment and purchasing power to improve work health and safety.
  • Governments departments promote community safety and provide education to support community health and safety.

Supply chains and networks

  • Supply chain and network participants understand their cumulative impact and actively improve the health and safety of the supply chain.
  • Commercial relationships within supply chains and networks are used to improve work health and safety.
  • Industry leaders champion work health and safety in supply chains and networks.

Leadership and culture

  • Communities and their leaders drive improved work health and safety.
  • Organisational leaders foster a culture of consultation and collaboration which actively improves work health and safety.
  • Health and safety is given priority in work processes and decisions.

Health and safety capabilities

  • Everyone in a workplace has the work health and safety capabilities they require.
  • Those providing work health and safety education, training and advice have the appropriate capabilities.
  • Work health and safety skills development is integrated effectively into relevant education and training programs.

Physical, mental health and wellbeing

  • Increased capacity of industry and individual workplaces to improve health and wellbeing and manage injuries.

Research and evaluation

  • The results of research and evaluation are disseminated and implemented.

Our focus areas

  • WHS capabilities
  • Leadership and culture
  • Inductions
  • Information, training and supervision
  • Challenging behaviours
  • Workplace relationships

What we will do 2018-2020

In collaboration with partners and stakeholders we will:

  1. Develop and disseminate work health and safety information, advice and practical resources to educate all parties engaging with young workers.
  2. Assist government agencies and non-government organisations to identify and understand duty of care and shared responsibilities of employers when facilitating or managing placement of young workers in workplaces.
  3. Scope the feasibility of digital-based applications and resources tools with key stakeholders.
  4. Engage with young people to develop tools that provide key information for young people entering the workforce.
  5. Provide small business and key stakeholders with information support and advice through our advisory service.
  6. Engage with priority industries to share information and monitor progress on actions focussed on educating young people.
  7. Physical and Mental Health and Wellbeing Program
    •  Design and implement health and wellbeing programs that includes industry specific stressors, fatigue, shift work, effects of drugs and alcohol, and other lifestyle factors.