Premier of Victoria website logo – The Hon Daniel Andrews – home

Giving Non-English Speaking Workers The Advice They Need

25 January 2019

The Andrews Labor Government is reaching out to non-English speaking workers to help them better understand their occupational health and safety rights.

As part of a public awareness campaign aimed at these employees, WorkSafe Victoria will launch an interactive hub this Saturday during Melbourne Victory’s home clash against Sydney FC in the A-League.

The hub – located at Gosch’s Paddock – will promote important health and safety information in nine languages in addition to English: Vietnamese, Cantonese, Mandarin, Arabic, Burmese, Dari, Dinka, Khmer and Korean.

Attendees will be able to chat to Melbourne Victory W-League star Natasha Dowie, who will share her experience with injury and the dedication it takes to return to the field.

The number of non-English speaking workers in Victoria is increasing and the language barriers they face can make them vulnerable.

Between July and December last year, more than 440 non-English speaking workers were referred to an interpreter after calling WorkSafe’s advisory service, up significantly from 274 in the previous six months.

A total of 926 workers have been referred to interpreters since the program first started 18 months ago.

Quotes attributable to Minister for Workplace Safety Jill Hennessy

“Every worker has a right to be protected from health and safety risks at work, regardless of where they come from or what language they speak.”

“More and more workers from non-English speaking backgrounds are entering the workforce, and our government wants to ensure they know that they have the same rights and protections as everyone else.”

Reviewed 19 August 2020

Was this page helpful?