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Health and Hygiene

Protecting the health and wellbeing of our people is as vital as their safety. 

Health Exposure Management at MMG: Mitigating Risks and Ensuring Wellbeing 

In accordance with MMG’s Safety, Security, Health, and Environment (SSHE) Performance and Fatal Risk Standards, the company defines specific requirements for managing health-related risks. These requirements encompass exposures to harmful agents, endemic diseases, pandemics, fatigue management, and overall employee health and wellbeing. 

Key aspects of MMG’s health exposure management include: 

1. Annual Exposure Assessment and health surveillance: 

  • MMG conducts yearly reviews to assess health exposure risks across its operations. 
  • Similar Exposure Groups (SEGs) are identified and reviewed as part of this process. 
  • The annual Occupational Hygiene Monitoring Plan is developed and executed to monitor exposure levels. 
  • Sites are required to arrange respiratory health surveillance for workers prior to commencing work, and then at least once every five years. Respiratory health medical examinations must include: 
    – a chest X-ray read by qualified radiologists to the International Labour Organization (ILO) Standard;
    spirometry tests and comparisons with previous spirometry tests where available; and 
    – any examination deemed necessary by an appropriate doctor to support the early detection of injury or illness to the person’s respiratory system (e.g. high-resolution computed tomography scan). 

 2. Critical Controls relating to carcinogens: 

  • MMG prioritizes higher-level controls to eliminate, control, or mitigate hazards and potential exposure to carcinogens. 
  • Specific measures include:
    – Sulphuric Acid Mist: Polypropylene balls are added to chemical tanks to break down bubbles, reducing the likelihood of sulphuric acid mist being released into the air.
    – Diesel Particulate Matter: MMG uses low-sulphur fuels, selects appropriate engines, and maintains exhaust filtration systems.
    Respirable Crystalline Silica: Dust suppression techniques (such as watering or sprayings), enclosed cabin equipment, exhaust ventilation systems, and vacuum usage minimize exposure.
    Welding Fumes: Engineering controls such as extraction systems are implemented, respiratory protection and training for dealing with welding fumes are mandatory.
    – Surface Lead Testing: MMG conducts surface lead testing programs alongside atmospheric testing to monitor potential lead exposure. 

3. Endemic Disease and Pandemic Management: 

  • MMG’s operations, especially in regions with prevalent diseases (such as HIV/AIDS, tuberculosis, malaria, and typhoid), maintain risk-based Exposure Management Plans.
    For example, at the Kinsevere operation, managing radiation exposure and malaria remains a priority.  
  • Dedicated medics are available on-site in some operations to address health-related issues. 

Blood lead exceedances 

At both our Rosebery and Dugald River operations in Australia, we produce lead as a by-product. We take the monitoring of blood levels very seriously and enforce strict protocols to reduce the risk of exposure to lead in the workplace. This is done to protect the health and wellbeing of our employees and to comply with national and state requirements. We have strict hygiene protocols, as outlined in our blood lead management procedures, and conduct ongoing monitoring – adjusting work practices and work environments as required. As a result, we are confident that our management of lead exposures is highly effective. 

We follow the National Standard for the Control of Inorganic Lead at Work (NOHSC:1012) and the National Code of Practice for the Control and Safe Use of Inorganic Lead at Work (NOHSC:2015) as guides for the control of blood lead levels in our people. 

Injury management and rehabilitation 

MMG recognises that helping people to stay at work or to make an early and safe return after an injury minimises the impact of injury on them and their families. MMG supports injured employees by having a system of workplace rehabilitation and by providing suitable duties for them while they are recovering. 

MMG supports all injured people to recover and return to work on suitable duties as soon as it is medically safe for them to do so. 

Fit for work 

We cultivate a safe work environment where all individuals are fit for work, extending to not being fatigued or adversely affected by substances through fatigue monitoring technology in all high-risk roles and random drug and alcohol testing. 

Our employees are also encouraged to notify us of any changes in their personal circumstances, including their mental health, that could affect their fitness for work. 

Mental health: prioritising wellbeing   

Good mental health and wellbeing are priorities for MMG, bringing clear business and employee benefits.  

Our Mental Health Framework describes the broad actions that we take to promote good mental health practices in the workplace, and to support employees experiencing mental illness, such as depression and anxiety.   

Our approach focuses on three key areas: 

1. Awareness and Prevention: 

  • MMG actively promotes good mental health practices in the workplace. 

They raise awareness about mental health issues to prevent negative impacts. 

2. Capacity Building: 

  • The company invests in building employees’ mental health resilience and coping skills. 
  • Training and resources are provided to enhance mental wellbeing. 

3. Support and Recovery: 

  • MMG supports employees experiencing mental illnesses like depression and anxiety. 
  • Sites Health teams ensure timely assistance and recovery support.