[this page is historical]
This Sunday, tell the Victorian government to "Get serious" about RSI! A national Model Manual Handling Regulation is being developed - but all signs currently are that it will take us backwards!
What is RSI Day?
RSI Day is an opportunity to promote injury prevention. The day raises awareness about the prevalence of RSI and its effects. To stop these injuries, we need to eliminate monotonous, repetitive and stressful work, work at fast speeds and poor work organization. This includes eliminating unnecessary overtime, cutbacks, substandard equipment and lack of worker control. International RSI Day started in 2000.
What is RSI?
Repetitive Strain Injury (RSI) is a generic term used to cover a number of overuse injuries affecting the soft tissue (muscles, tendons and nerves) of the neck, back, shoulders, arms, hands and, sometimes, the lower limbs as well. These are almost always work-related.
In Australia, we often use the term Occupational Overuse Syndrome (OOS), as it covers a broader range of work activities.
RSI Day 2010
A national Model Manual Tasks Regulation is being developed. It will result in more RSI injuries as fewer causes of these injuries will be detected and fixed. Laws that cover the biggest cause of all compensation claims will have the guts ripped out of them.
What are the problems for Victorian workers?
- The national Model OHS Regulations are being developed in a slip shod way.
- There is no overall framework for all regulations (to make sure each regulation about each hazard has the same sorts of duties as another)
- There are no general duties that will apply to each regulation (e.g. currently Victoria has general duties about providing information, instruction and training, involving OHS Reps etc)
- Employer Duties to fix things (Control of risk) will nearly disappear.
- Laws are being weakened not tightened.
What broken promises?
The Victorian government promised that there would be no lose of standards in the move to model OHS laws. The Victorian government didn't live up to this promise with the Model OHS Act and it is not living up to this promise again with the Manual Tasks Regulations.