OHS considerations for commercial tenants of Monash University buildings

June 2011

Monash University has a duty of care for the health and safety of staff, students, contractors, visitors and to commercial tenants (and their agents and staff) within Monash University buildings. Tenants also have a reciprocal duty of care for the health and safety of staff, students, contractors and visitors. This information sheet aims to provide advice and guidance for tenants to assist them in their legislative obligations and their agreements with Property and Leasing Management Branch (PLMB).

*The term tenant will refer to the person/s holding a lease agreement with Monash University, and all employees and invitees for the remainder of this document.

Unacceptable Behavior

Monash University is committed to providing employees, students, contractors and visitors with a healthy and safe environment for work and study that is free from behaviours, practices and processes that may constitute bullying or occupational violence.

Monash University recognises that employees, students, contractors and visitors working or studying at the university are entitled to be treated with dignity and respect.

Bullying or occupational violence is unacceptable and will not be tolerated at Monash. Any such behaviour by tenants constitutes a serious breach of their lease agreement.

Bullying and occupational violence includes but is not limited to each or any or a combination of the following:

  • violent or challenging behaviour towards university staff, students, contractors or visitors
  • racial, sexual or other forms of harassment or other discriminatory behaviour
  • violence, intimidation (including verbal abuse) and unruly or offensive behaviour
  • aggressive and threatening language and behavior
  • or the threat of any of the above.

Compressed Gases

Tenants who use compressed gases for food, drinks etc must:

  • ensure that all bottles are in use i.e. they are connected via the correct pressure regulator and connection hose/pipe to equipment
  • all compressed gas bottles must be securely held by gas bottle brackets or a heavy chain system attached to a rigid wall around the body of the cylinder
  • unused empty or full bottles must not be stored in a premise. If the premise does not have an approved gas storage area then the bottle must be located in an approved university store
  • all gas bottles must be moved (empty or full) on a cylinder trolley and a relevant Job Safety Analysis (JSA) must be available upon request.

Dangerous Goods and Hazardous Substances

  • The tenant must not store dangerous goods, hazardous substances, poisons etc beyond what is required for normal use.
  • All Dangerous Goods, Hazardous Substances, poisons etc must be stored in accordance with Monash University Dangerous Goods Storage.
  • Tenants must maintain a hazardous substance register that includes a list of all chemicals on the premises. This includes proprietary chemicals e.g. White King and cleaning detergents.
  • A copy of, or access to a current manufacturer's Material Safety Data Sheets (MSDS) for every chemical in the list must be available.

Engagement of Contractors

Any works carried out on behalf of Tenants must be conducted by Monash University approved contractors who:

  • are suitably qualified, competent and experienced in carrying out such works. Copies of documents regarding the contractors qualifications and competencies should be retained by the tenant.
  • have completed the Monash University Facilities and Services contractor induction before any work commences.
  • have completed a local area induction that encompasses occupational health and safety processes, procedure, hazards and risks related to the particular site or building.
  • have a completed Job Safety Analysis (JSA) for all tasks prior to commencement of the works.
  • have a certificate of approval for any electrical works undertaken and this certificate must be provide to Monash University Facilities and Services.

Emergency Management

  • The tenant must comply at all times with Monash University emergency procedures including emergency evacuation, chemicals spills, armed intruders etc.
  • All procedures are available in campus specific booklet form or are available via the OH&S website.
  • Tenants must be prepared to provide personnel to be trained and operate as members of the Emergency Control Organisation (ECO) for the building in which they operate their business.
  • The Tenant must observe all actual or trial emergency evacuations and must evacuate the building when the alarm sounds and/or the instruction to evacuate is heard over the building's PA system.
  • Directions from emergency wardens or emergency services personnel must be followed at all times.

Equipment, Machinery and Plant

  • The tenant must ensure that all their equipment is maintained in appropriate working order.
  • All electrical equipment should be tested and tagged as required by Australian Standards.

Hazard and Incident Reporting

The tenant must inform PLMB immediately of any:

  • Hazards that are related to Monash University infrastructure and have the potential to cause injury to any person.
  • Incidents which resulted in or had the potential to cause injury to any person whether a member of the tenants staff or a Monash staff, student, contractor or visitor.

Hazard Control and Risk Management

Worksafe Victoria have served improvement notices on tenants at Monash campuses for failure to comply with manual handling, hazardous substances and dangerous goods legislation. All issues could have been mitigated if risk assessments had been conducted and implemented in the businesses.

  • All tenants should be aware of and implement the principles of risk management in their business operation at Monash University.
  • Risk management is at the core of all Occupational Health and Safety legislation and failure to take this into consideration can leave a business at risk of intervention in the event of an incident.
  • Risk assessments should be carried out on any equipment with the potential to cause harm eg slicers, toasters etc and processes such as manual handling.

Health and Safety Induction

  • All tenants of Monash University buildings, and their staff should complete the on-line health and safety induction prior to the commencement of work to ensure that each person is fully aware of the hazards and risks at the campuses of Monash University and the modes of response to these issues.
  • In addition, each person should at commencement of employment complete a local area induction that covers such things as emergency egress and assembly areas, local safety personnel, hazards and risks associated with the particular building, location and activities.

Infectious Illness

Tenants must immediately notify Monash University and appropriate public authorities of any infectious illness occurring in their premises.

Smoke Free Environment

Monash University upholds the right of an individual to work or study in a smoke-free environment.

  • Smoking is prohibited in all Monash University buildings, including all residential areas such as halls of residence, flats and houses.
  • Smoking is not permitted in any Monash University vehicles.
  • Smoking is not permitted within 10m of building entrances, air intake vents, ventilation ducts and open windows to prevent second-hand smoke entering buildings and air flow units.
  • Tenants must take such steps as are necessary to prevent infiltration of any smoke into the workplace.

Manual Handling and Ergonomics

  • Tenants should ensure that all areas of the workplace are designed, constructed and managed to minimize risks from ergonomic, manual handling and physical hazards.
  • Tenants should ensure that appropriate trolleys and other equipment are available for the movement of goods etc to and from and within a lease area.
  • Tenants should consider the University's "Move Smart" and Ergonomic Guidelines.

Monash University Policies and Procedures

Tenants must familiarise themselves and comply with Monash University occupational health and safety policies, procedures and guidelines in relation to:

  • biosafety standards
  • contractor engagement
  • dangerous goods and hazardous substances
  • emergency procedures including building evacuations
  • hazard and incident reporting
  • manual handling
  • radiation control
  • unacceptable behavior.

Relevant documentation can be accessed at OH&S website

Obstruction of doors, corridors, common areas etc

  • Tenants or their property must not obstruct entrances, corridors, passages, stairways, lifts or landings in any way that interferes with ingress/egress and normal pedestrian movement.
  • Obstruction could occur through storage of goods, equipment (storage or use), trolleys, tables, chairs etc and should be removed immediately.


Safety signage as required by legislation must be installed in all areas as appropriate – this could relate to issue of Personal Protective Equipment (e.g. safety glasses, cut proof gloves etc) or particular hazards associated with individual pieces of equipment or particular processes etc.

Further information

For further information contact the Property and Leasing Management Branch on 990 24006 or the Occupational Health and Safety Branch: