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Is it legal to always lock a first aid room?

The question of legality has limited practical relevance as our OHS Act and regulations are silent on whether it’s ‘legal to always lock a first aid room.’

What the WorkSafe’s First Aid in the Workplace Compliance Code does say is that first aid officers ‘need to have access to’ the first aid room, and that ‘each first aid room (and its contents) needs to be under the control of a first aid officer, who the employer has provided necessary training to, and therefore has the appropriate skills and knowledge.’

So, in short, the guidance is indicating that first aid rooms will usually be ‘secured’, with first aid officers holding the means of access.

If you and your DWG feel that current policies and procedures pose a risk, we encourage you, in your capacity as HSR, to request that your employer conduct a risk assessment, and if necessary, review current arrangements.

See our Resolution of Issues webpage for more information on how to resolve safety issues.

Of course, knowing our rights is only half the battle – we must also have the power to enforce our rights under the law, OHS principles, and in a way that maintains a good working relationship with our employer.

We strongly encourage members to contact their Union for expert advice and representation.

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