A change in bullying policy

I work in a public hospital and have been told that the policy regarding the prevention of bullying has changed. Is this true?

Yes. PD2018_016 (Prevention and Management of Workplace Bullying in NSW Health) was released last year. One of the important changes is an increased emphasis on prevention (Section 3). Increased recognition is placed on workplace bullying being a potential (or actual) work, health and safety (‘WHS’) issue, which will necessitate adopting a risk management approach as required by WHS legislation.

The PD identifies a number of factors that contribute to incidences of bullying in the workplace, including: leadership style; change management practices; systems of work; workload; staffing levels; uncertain job expectations; skills gaps; workplace relationships; and the work environment. Work has started to develop and introduce more standardised methods to be adopted across the state under the risk management approach. Good policy is a start. But good practice and changing culture is a real challenge in an environment where bullying, according to the 2018 People Matter Employee Survey, remains at worrying levels in the health system.