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Where to Start in Health & Safety: Watch

Many of you joined us last week for our first Farm without Harm 'Up Our Game' workshops – these are 45min online sessions where we work together to up our game and protect our farming people from preventable harm.


The first session was focused on “Where to start?”. We took it right back to basics, asking our panellists what good calls we can be making at the beginning of every day to protect our people.


If you missed the session, you can watch it here:



There were plenty of useful takeaways from the conversation between Lindy Nelson (host), Jack Raharuhi, West Coast Dairy Farmer and Business Manager at Pamū, and Graham Neate, Health & Safety Leader, Wareing Group.

Having experienced two fatalities on farm, Jack has seen the real impact on communities when we don’t put ourselves and health and safety first. He’s made a lot of adjustments particularly when it comes to fostering a positive culture around safety and leading by example.

Three ways to instil a positive culture around safety on farm:

  1. Take time to build relationships with your team: being available, meeting regularly, discussing what you expect of yourself and of each other, seeking feedback together as a team

  2. Have discussions around safety and call out unsafe behaviour (having good relationships with your team makes this easier).

  3. Hold regular toolbox meetings or “yarns” - Get the team together every day; discuss the day, the week, the jobs to be done; ask questions about safety and wellbeing; make it personal for the team. Dairy NZ, have resources on how to structure a good meeting.

Planning your work is a great place to start. Graham put together this one page worksheet “What’s the plan for the week?” as a way to run through tasks for the week, identify risks and ways to control them. Print this out each week, lead by example and cultivate a positive culture around safety. Having difficulty getting people on your farm to wear the right safety gear? Graham made a great analogy - you wouldn’t go out onto a cricket pitch without a box, helmet and safety pads. Why wouldn’t you wear the gear on farm? WEAR THE GEAR.

We will leave you with two quotes from Graham:

“Never under-estimate good safety leadership – you become the company you keep”

“Let’s make common sense, common practice.”

We appreciate these changes can take time and come with having some hard conversations, which is why our next workshop on 21 September will be focused on just that: How to have hard conversations around setting new safety standards on farm. Do you have a story to share on this topic? Drop us an email at fran@saferfarms.org.nz.

Because, ‘she’ll be right’ is no longer good enough.

Sign up to future workshops at www.farmwithoutharm.org.nz/workshops

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