End of Year Work Parties It’s all fun until someone loses an eye!
Legislation is very clear – the end of year holiday party is an extension of the workplace. This means the employer is responsible for and has a duty of care for the safety and well-being of all staff.
Quick Tips to Minimise Risks
Well in advance of the event, review your employment policies to ensure these are up to date.
Policies which should be included are:
- code of conduct;
- inappropriate behaviour in the workplace;
- drug and alcohol policy, including responsible consumption of alcohol; and
- anti-bullying, sexual harassment and equal opportunity policies.
When sending out the invitation:
- make participation optional;
- clearly state event location with a specific start and finish time;
- include copies of the policies relevant to the occasion;
- repercussions for misconduct should be outlined;
- provide contact details of designated manager(s) who will be available if issues arise during the event;
- highlight that plenty of food and non-alcoholic drinks will be provided;
- encourage employees to know their limitations if they do choose to drink alcohol; and
- details of available transportation options – remember liability can extend to the journey to and from the work function.
Deal with complaints immediately, following proper procedures and take appropriate disciplinary action if necessary.