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The Canadian Occupational Health and Safety System

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Presentation on theme: "The Canadian Occupational Health and Safety System"— Presentation transcript:

1 The Canadian Occupational Health and Safety System
An Overview This presentation is a basic overview of what Canadian Legislation is and how it is organized as law, rules and guidelines.

2 Canada Has 14 Jurisdictions
1 Federal 10 Provinces and 3 Territories The most confusing aspect for non-Canadians is the fact that every “jurisdiction” has its own laws. Geographically we can think of every province and territory having its own rules. However the Federal jurisdiction actually applies to certain industries wherever they exist in Canada. An important thing to know is that no jurisdiction is more important or controls any other. No jurisdiction prepares rules for any other. More about this later.

3 . Provincial and Territorial Jurisdictions (90% of workers):
Provincial and territorial employees Workers in most industries, including small businesses and self-employed workers e.g. construction, manufacturing, textiles, mining Federal Jurisdiction (10% of workers): Employees of federal government and federal corporations, military Workers in certain national corporations e.g. airlines, railways, telecommunications

4 Internal Responsibility System
Employer and employees: Know their work and the hazards best Cooperate to implement safety measures Employer manages the workplace safely. Employer must take all reasonable actions to protect the health and safety of workers. Employer is accountable for non-compliance. Government agencies: Legislate, inspect, and enforce (civil, criminal) Provide preventive services and incentives

5 Employer Responsibilities
Identify workplace hazards – prevent & control Implement safe work practices and comply with all regulations Develop hazard prevention program and management system Provide workplace training and education to workers Support employee participation, such as safety committees Train supervisors to ensure they are “competent” Inspect the workplace Have an accident investigation and reporting system Here is a basic outline of requirements for Due Diligence. You can find these as well in a document on our website:

6 Employer Due Diligence
Due diligence is a legal defense in case of accident or injury Evidence that all reasonable precautions were taken to prevent accidents and injuries Steps to demonstrate due diligence: Show that employer is aware of hazards and acting to control them. Document policies, practices, and procedures. Monitor workplace and ensure that employees follow workplace procedures and requirements. Implement good practices used in similar organizations and industries. Here is a basic outline of requirements for Due Diligence. You can find these as well in a document on our website:

7 Workers’ Rights Right to Participate Right to Know
Joint Health and Safety Committees Right to Know Must be informed about hazards Must be trained on safe work procedures Right to Refuse unsafe work Specific procedures detailed in regulations

8 Workers’ Responsibilities
Work safely according to procedures Use safety equipment and personal protective equipment Report hazards

9 History of Health and Safety
Ontario Factories Act Building Trades Protection Act Workmen’s Compensation Act Industrial Accident Prevention Assoc. Construction Safety Association Occupational Health and Safety Act 1978 CCOHS founded Workplace Safety and Insurance Board

10 Health and Safety Organizations
Compensation boards (13) Insurance, treatment, rehabilitation, prevention, education Ministries of Labour (14) Legislation, standards, enforcement CCOHS Sectoral and professional safety associations Prevention, training, consulting Education and training organizations Research institutions Independent consultants

11 Workers’ Insurance in Canada (Historic Compromise)
Employers pay premiums to workers’ compensation boards (WCBs) based on their injury record Insurance is mandatory No-fault insurance – workers cannot sue employers Boards pay incentives to employers to encourage prevention, training, and other safety programs by employers

12 Roles of the Workers’ Compensation Boards (WCBs)
Provide treatment and rehabilitation Pay injured workers while they recover Pay pensions to workers who are permanently disabled Fund safety associations (industry sectors) Deliver services for prevention and education

13 – Example – Construction Safety Association of Ontario
Established 1929 to serve construction industry Bipartite – employers and building trades Funded by WSIB (compensation board) About 2% of construction insurance funds ($ 750 million (about $2000 per worker per year)) Major functions: Education and training Consulting and technical advice Target companies with high injury rates Target new companies Research

14 CCOHS Established 1978 as the national centre Mandate: promote OH&S
Tripartite (governments, industry, unions) Primary roles: Information to all workplace parties Free Inquiries and OSH Answers Databases – legislation, CHEMINFO Publications and e-courses Workplace tools and services – OH&S management system, MSDS writer, MSDS management Collaborative projects such as INTOX

15 Recent Trends in Canada
Improved performance Fewer injuries, better compliance More enforcement Criminal liability More research to identify best practices More workplace requirements: Education and training Prevention programs and management

16 Evolving Issues in Canada
Effectiveness of incentives to employers Low injury rates High performance: Strong prevention programs Management systems Corporate social responsibility Performance beyond the law New employment relationships More contract work Employment agencies

17 Canadian Centre for Occupational Health and Safety
Thank you Canadian Centre for Occupational Health and Safety Thank-you!

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