Mandatory OHS Compliance

In Ontario, regardless of the industry you are in, there are mandatory OHS compliance requirements that you will need to adhere to.

Following are the mandatory OHS compliance requirements in Ontario:

Do you have a Health & Safety Policy and Program?

Ontario’s Occupational Health & Safety Act (OHSA) requires employers to prepare, and review at least annually, a written occupational health and safety policy, and to develop and maintain a program to implement that policy [s.25(j)]:

  • If you regularly employ 5 or less workers you do not have to put the policies in writing, unless a Ministry of Labour inspector has ordered you have one in writing.
  • If you regularly employ 6 or more workers you must write and post health and safety, violence and harassment policies, and make them available to your workers.
  • You must create and maintain a program to implement the policies.

Do you have a Workplace Violence and Harassment Policy & perform Risk Assessment?

As an employer, you need to comply with the following sections of the OHS Act pertaining to workplace violence and harassment.

According to Section 32.0.1 of the OHS Act, as an employer, you require to:
  • Prepare a policy for workplace violence & workplace harassment
  • Review the policy as often as is necessary, but at least annually.
  • Ensure the policies are in writing, and post them at a conspicuous place in the workplace, in case you employ 6 or more workers regularly. If you employ 5 or fewer workers regularly, you need not have the policies written.
According to Section 32.0.2 of the OHS Act, as an employer, you require to:
  • Develop and maintain a program to implement with respect to workplace violence.
According to Section 32.0.3 of the OHS Act, as an employer, you require to:
  • Assess the risks of workplace violence that may arise from the nature of the workplace, the type of work, or the conditions of work.
  • Reassess the risks of workplace violence as often as is necessary to ensure that the policy and program continue to protect workers from workplace violence.
According to Section 32.0.6 of the OHS Act, as an employer, you require to:
  • In consultation with the committee or a health and safety representative, if any, develop and maintain a written program to implement the policy with respect to workplace harassment.
  • The program must include measures and procedures for workers to report incidents of workplace harassment to the employer or supervisor or someone other than the employer or supervisor (if they are the alleged harassers).
  • It must set out how incidents or complaints pertaining to workplace harassment will be dealt with. Set out processes on how you will not disclose information pertaining to workplace harassment incident or complaint. Please note you may have to only if it is necessary for investigating or taking corrective action. May be, also when the law requires you to do so.
  • Set out processes for how you will inform the alleged harasser and the harassed of the investigation results. Ensure that this includes any corrective action taken or ones that you need to take based on the investigation.

Do you have a Joint Health and Safety Committee with at least 2 certified members?

Section 9 (2) to (3) of the OHS Act requires you to have a Joint Health and Safety Committee:
  • If you employ 20 or more workers regularly at your workplace. Further, with respect to which an order to an employer is in effect under section 33.
  • Other than a construction project where you employ fewer than 20 workers regularly. Furthermore, with respect to which a regulation concerning designated substances applies.
  • The minister may, by order in writing, require a constructor or an employer to:
  1. establish and maintain one or more joint health and safety committees for a workplace or a part of it.
  2. The minister may, in such order, provide for the composition, practice, and procedure of any committee so established.
  • At least 2 members (1 management rep & 1 worker rep) need to be certified members by attending the part 1 (3 days) and part 2 (2 days) JHSC Certification Training conducted by a CPO-approved training provider.
Effective Mar 01, 2016, the New Training Standard issued by the Chief Prevention Office (CPO) of the Ministry of Labour (MOL) requires:
  • A JHSC member to take Part 1 and Part 2 of a CPO-approved JHSC certification training program delivered by a CPO–approved JHSC certification training provider. The ministry advertises the list of CPO-approved providers on the ministry website.
  • You must complete part 2 training within six months of completing part 1 training. Please note that the CPO can grant you a one-time extension at its discretion.
  • In order to maintain JHSC certification, an approved JHSC Refresher Training program must be completed every 3 years. It must be within 3 years of completing Part 2 training or your last JHSC Refresher Training.

Did you know you need to get your workers to do the 4 mandatory trainings in Ontario?

Regardless of the industry of operation, it is a mandatory OHS compliance requirement for every Ontario employer to get their workers to do the following 4 trainings:

Accessibility for Ontarians with Disabilities Act (AODA)

Comply with O. Reg. 165/16. In compliance with the Ontario Regulation 429/07. AODA – Customer Service Standard course provides the required and necessary information for all customer service employees in Ontario. Disabilities don’t discriminate; unfortunately, sometimes, people do (often unintentionally). Take this course and help stop the stigmas.

Workplace Hazardous Materials Information System (WHMIS) 2015

Comply with R.R.O. 1990, Reg. 860. WHMIS created a consistent and practical way to identify hazardous materials and developed the necessary measures for prevention and control, should an accident or illness occur. This training addresses the legislative requirements for the training. It includes incorporating WHMIS Symbols/Pictograms, Supplier Labels, Workplace Labels, MSDS/SDS, Responsibilities, and Controls.

H&S Awareness for Workers / Supervisors

Comply with Ontario Regulation 297/13. This training further informs workers/supervisors about their roles and responsibilities under the Occupational Health and Safety Act. The training also informs them regarding:

  • The functions of the Joint Health and Safety Committee as well as the Health and Safety Representative
  • The benefits playing an active role in an organization’s health and safety.

The training will educate on the roles of the Ministry as well as WSIB and the common workplace hazards.

Workplace Violence & Sexual Harassment (Bill 168)

Comply with Part III.0.1 – s.32.0.1 to s.32.0.8 of the Occupational Health and Safety Act, R.S.O. 1990, c. O.1. In 2010, the OHS Act of Ontario was amended with the specific intention of increasing the protection of employees from workplace violence. It also put an increased focus on employers to actively address and prevent violence and harassment in the workplace. Understanding methods of identifying and preventing workplace violence and harassment, in accordance with the Occupational Health and Safety Act, is important and required for all workers/supervisors in Ontario. This course provides employees/supervisors with the foundation necessary to understand and prevent violence and harassment in the workplace.

All the 4 mandatory trainings can be done online with each training approximately 45 minutes. Thus, within no time, your workers will easily comply with the 4 mandatory training requirement.

Did you get your workers to appoint a Health & Safety Representative?

According to Section 8 (1), an employer shall get the workers to select at least one health and safety representative:

  • At a project or other workplace where no committee is required under Section 9 of the OHS Act,
  • Where the number of workers regularly exceeds five,
  • From among the workers at the workplace while ensuring that the worker does not have managerial functions.

Have you conducted your workplace inspection for this month?

As part of your organization’s systems for hazard identification, assessment, elimination, and control, be sure to conduct regular workplace inspections. You will need to do it as part of the OHS compliance requirements. According to Section 9 (26) of the Occupational Health & Safety Act (OHSA), unless otherwise required by the regulations or by an order by an inspector, a member designated under subsection (23) of section 9 shall inspect the physical condition of the workplace at least once a month.

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