Starting in January 2015, the employer – which manufactured wire and cable products – banned smoking anywhere on company property, including outside of the plant. Employees were also prohibited from leaving company property...more
The project manager who supervised the four workers who died after a swing stage scaffold collapsed on Christmas Eve, 2009, has been found guilty on four counts of criminal negligence causing death and one count of criminal...more
A Nova Scotia court has imposed a “creative sentence” for a violation of the Occupational Health and Safety Act, requiring the company to make safety presentations in addition to paying a fine.
A journeyman electrician...more
An employer’s appeal challenging a departed employee’s workers’ compensation entitlements may proceed, despite being filed after the employer, union and employee reached a settlement at mediation.
The union had filed...more
A safety officer’s compliance order has been suspended where the cost of compliance would be so high that it could cause serious economic harm to the company.
The company performed stevedoring and terminal handling of...more
The Ontario Ministry of Labour has released its schedule of workplace inspection blitzes for the period from May 2015 to March 2016. The schedule gives employers advance notice of what MOL inspectors will look for when they...more
A widely-reported fire at a Kingston construction site that required the evacuation of a crane operator by helicopter, has resulted in fines against the owner of the company that supplied the crane operator.
To avoid the...more
A maintenance electrician had “worked on” a stuck shipping door when he simply “inspected” it, even though he had not actually performed maintenance on it, a court has ruled. He was injured when the door fell on him. The...more
Exceeding industry standards does not, on its own, protect employers from health and safety convictions or fines, a recent court decision shows. A roofing company was charged with two offences under the Ontario Occupational...more
An employer has been ordered to pay aggravated damages – in addition to lost wages – after firing an employee in retaliation for raising safety issues. The employee worked at a hair salon. She suffered an injury at work as a...more
The Occupational Health and Safety Act may protect employees against retaliation for asserting their rights under that Act, but not for merely sustaining an injury, the Ontario Labour Relations Board has decided....more
A construction company that tried to blame a worker’s fall on his untied boots, has been found guilty of all 5 charges against it under Saskatchewan’s The Occupational Health and Safety Act. The 18-year-old worker, who had...more
A judge has rejected an employer’s argument that Occupational Health and Safety Act charges against it were unclear and that the Crown was required to provide further “particulars” of the charges so the employer could defend...more
Employers often struggle with the question of who is a “supervisor” under the Ontario Occupational Health and Safety Act. The answer to that question is obviously important because supervisors have legal duties under the...more
A constructor that argued the “mistake of fact” due diligence defence was instead found to have made a “mistake of law” and was convicted of a charge under the Occupational Health and Safety Act....more
Employers often post new procedures in the workplace without providing formal training. A recent decision of the Ontario Labour Relations Board suggests that for some work procedures, posting is not enough; rather, training...more
An Ontario court has dismissed charges under the Occupational Health and Safety Act after two incidents which the joint health and safety committee did not identify as posing a “high priority” safety concern....more
An adjudicator has criticized an employer’s motivational presentation as “offensive, distasteful and inappropriate as a motivational tool”, but found that it was not illegal. The presentation was delivered by a Regional...more
In dismissing Occupational Health and Safety Act charges against an employer arising out of a fatality, an Ontario court has held that it is not appropriate for the Ministry of Labour to charge under the “general duty clause”...more
Employers who have bona fide reasons for dismissing an employee should avoid using “not the right fit”. They should also show up at Ontario Labour Relations Board hearings. An employer that dismissed an employee hours after a...more
A supervisor with an asbestos abatement company, and his employer, have pleaded guilty to charges under the Occupational Health and Safety Act and were fined, after workers were exposed to asbestos dust on a job site....more
The Ontario Labour Relations Board has held that where an employer had complied with a Ministry of Labour inspector’s compliance orders under the Occupational Health and Safety Act, to the satisfaction of the MOL, the...more
Ontario’s Divisional Court has decided that the Workplace Safety and Insurance Act’s age cut-off for loss of earnings benefits for older workers did not violate the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms....more
Although an employer may appeal a Ministry of Labour inspector’s rescission (withdrawal) of a compliance order that he or she wrote to an employer under the Occupational Health and Safety Act, the Ontario Labour Relations...more
The debate continues as to whether the Ontario Labour Relations Board has jurisdiction to hear harassment-reprisal complaints under the Occupational Health and Safety Act, but another Vice-Chair of the OLRB has said “yes”....more