Occupational Health and Safety Act

News & Analysis as of

MOL Inspector’s “Unclear” Order Required School Board To Revise Its Workplace Violence Policy

A Ministry of Labour inspector has ordered an Ontario school board to revise its workplace violence policy, and the Ontario Labour Relations Board has suspended that Order, calling it “unclear”....more

Corporate Director Fined Under OHSA In Safety Belt Case

A corporate director of a stucco company has been fined $3,000.00 under the Ontario Occupational Health and Safety Act for failing to ensure that workers used safety belts on elevated work platforms. ...more

Three Months Until July 1 Training Deadline: Update On Ontario’s New Safety Awareness Training Requirement

Ontario employers have less than three months left to ensure that their workers and supervisors get “basic occupational health and safety awareness training” before the July 1, 2014 deadline....more

New Ontario Mandatory Health And Safety Awareness Training For Workers And Supervisors: Deadline July 1, 2014

The safety and wellbeing of employees in the workplace is a concern in respect of employers of all sizes and across all sectors. This concern was magnified in Ontario after a quadruple fatality involving a scaffolding...more

Federal Health And Safety Officer’s File Not Absolutely Privileged: Arbitrator

A federal Health and Safety Officer’s file was not absolutely privileged, and a labour arbitrator may order parts of it produced to parties in an arbitration, an arbitrator has decided....more

Zero-Tolerance “Safety Absolute” Upheld: One Tie-Off Violation Gets Employee Fired For Cause

Zero-tolerance safety rules, often called “Life Saving Rules”, “Cardinal Safety Rules” or ”Safety Absolutes”, are becoming more common in industry. An arbitrator has now upheld the firing of a unionized employee for one...more

Company Director Fined $8,500 After Swearing At MOL Safety Inspector, Making Threatening Gestures And Telling Inspector To Leave...

Corporate directors can be charged by the Ontario Ministry of Labour and fined under the Occupational Health and Safety Act. Threatening and swearing at a Ministry of Labour inspector certainly increases the odds of charges...more

Previous Environmental Convictions Considered In Jailing Of Supervisor For OHSA Offences: Court’s Reasons Now Available

A supervisor’s previous violations of the Environmental Protection Act, and failure to pay more than $50,000 in fines for those violations, were a factor in the court’s decision to send her to jail for Occupational Health and...more

$20,000 Fine After HR Staff, Supervisor Fail To Immediately Report Injury To MOL

An Ontario employer has been fined $20,000 for failing to report an injury to the Ministry of Labour, showing that employers need to educate their managers about the types of injuries that must be reported under the...more

Supervisor Jailed 45 Days For Occupational Health And Safety Act Violation

An Ontario supervisor has been jailed for 45 days after a worker fell off a roof and suffered permanent paralysis. Are courts growing increasingly comfortable jailing supervisors for serious safety violations?...more

Safety Committee Co-Chair Disciplined For Insubordination, Must Raise Matters In “Appropriate Forum”

A long-time co-chair of a plant safety committee has been disciplined after he confronted the employer in a “crew talk” meeting for failing to consult with the safety committee before implementing a new drug and alcohol...more

$75,000 Fine For Failing To Report Occupational Disease Claim

The Occupational Health and Safety Act obligation to notify the Ontario Ministry of Labour of accidents and occupational illness claims is not a mere technicality, as one employer has learned when it was hit with a $75,000.00...more

July 1, 2014 Deadline To Comply With Ontario’s New Safety Awareness Training Requirements. Here Is What You Need To Do

The clock is ticking. All Ontario employers must provide their workers and supervisors with “basic occupational health and safety awareness training” by July 1st, 2014 or they will be in violation of a new regulation under...more

MOL Inpector Had Not “Pounced” After Putting Employer At Ease About Possible OHSA Charges: Court

An inspector’s alleged statement that, “our branch is different up here. I know in southern Ontario they fine, fine, fine. But we don’t do that here” was not a promise that he wouldn’t lay charges under the Occupational...more

Illegal For Harassment Program To Allow For “Preliminary Assessment”, Early Dismissal, Employee Arguing At OLRB

A provision in a harassment program allowing for a preliminary assessment of complaints, rather than an investigation, and for early dismissal, violates the Occupational Health and Safety Act, an employee is arguing before...more

$110,000 Fine Shows It’s Cheaper To Comply With Orders Than Disregard Them

I recently wrote about the cost of failing to report accidents or occupational disease claims to the Ministry of Labour. The cost of failing to comply with an inspector’s orders can be even higher....more

Engineer Now Facing Both Criminal Negligence, OHSA Charges In Mall Collapse

Police have laid criminal negligence charges against a professional engineer in relation to the Elliot Lake mall collapse in June 2012. The charges against professional engineer Robert Wood are two counts of criminal...more

July 1, 2014 Deadline To Provide Ontario’s New Safety Awareness Program To Employees (Your Current Program Is Probably Not Good...

The clock is ticking. All Ontario employers must provide their workers and supervisors with “basic occupational health and safety awareness training” by July 1st, or they will be in violation of a new regulation under the...more

End-of-year party precautions and the top tips to manage this risk

The season of workplace social functions is upon us, for better and for worse. An office party that goes off the rails is not just the subject of water cooler gossip; it's a real source of employee complaints, workers...more

Alberta Court Imposes Large Fine For Employer In Calf-Roping Case

On October 31, 2013, the Alberta Court of Queen’s Bench released the sentencing decision in R. v. XI Technologies Inc., 2013 ABQB 651. The Court of Queen’s Bench sentenced the employer to a fine of $275,000, inclusive...more

What’s The Risk Of Not Foreseeing Safety? In Today’s Industry, One Must Endeavour To Pinpoint Workplace Hazards And Then Strive To...

It’s commonplace to say that “careful planning” is an obvious and vital element of any construction project, but it’s only the first foreseeable step in prevention. As all involved in 21st century construction are (or should...more

Legislative Update Report No. 2013-19 -- Oct 11, 2013

In This Article: Federal Government; Alberta; British Columbia; Manitoba; New Brunswick; Newfoundland; Northwest Territories; Nova Scotia; Nunavut; Ontario; Prince Edward Island; Québec/Quebec; Saskatchewan; and...more

Post-Accident Safety Fixes: An Admission Of Liability?

We are often asked whether post-accident fixes or improvements by an employer will be held against it if occupational health and safety charges are laid. For example, if an employer puts a guard on a machine after an employee...more

Changes To Alberta’s Occupational Health And Safety Legislation – Administrative Penalties And Tickets

Effective October 1, 2013, certain changes to Alberta’s occupational health and safety legislation came into force which allow an Occupational Health and Safety Officer to issue administrative penalties against any party...more

Inspector’s Opinion Beat Engineer’s In Request To Suspend OHSA Compliance Order

The Ontario Labour Relations Board has deferred to the opinion of a Ministry of Labour inspector over that of an engineer in refusing to suspend a compliance order issued by the inspector under the Occupational Health and...more

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