Workplace Safety & Prevention Services News – Your Top 6 Questions Answered

“What needs to be posted?”

 

Employers often have questions about their legal requirement to post certain health and safety documents in the workplace. For instance, does the material have to be translated into other languages, how often does it need to be updated, and how can they ensure workers actually use the information?

The bigger question may be, ‘why does the law require me to do this?’ WSPS Consultant Sara Lambie assures employers that posting requirements are “not a paper-gathering exercise.” The information you display plays a vital role in the health and safety of your workplace. It:

  • supports a worker’s right to know about the hazards in the workplace

  • helps clarify worker’s duties and roles under the internal responsibility system (IRS)

  • provides internal and external resources for workers with health and safety concerns

  • helps establish your company’s commitment to health and safety

Sara helps answer your top 6 questions about posting requirements below.

Your 6 questions about posting health and safety in the workplace answered

1. What health and safety documents am I required to post? And in what languages? Under the Occupational Health and Safety Act (OHSA) and the Workplace Safety & Insurance Act (WSIA), workplaces in Ontario must post a variety of external and internal documents.  

External documents

OHSA

  • The OHSA

  • “Health and Safety at Work – Prevention Starts Here” MLITSD poster. Outlines the rights and responsibilities of workers, supervisors and employers. Must be displayed in English and the majority language of the workplace. Available in 21 languages.

WSIA

  • “In Case of Injury at Work” poster. Outlines the steps workers and employers need to take if there is an injury at work. Available in multiple languages.

Internal documents

  • workplace health and safety policy

  • workplace violence and harassment policy

  • names and work locations of joint health and safety (JHSC) members

  • orders from an MLITSD inspector (if applicable)

  • results of monitoring of airborne concentrations of a designated substance and worker exposure to airborne concentrations of a designated substance

“It’s considered a best practice to translate the internal documents you are posting into the primary languages of the workplace,” says Sara. “Some workplaces ask existing employees who speak various languages to help with translation.”

2. Where do I post these documents? The law requires employers to post the OHSA and Ministry poster in a “conspicuous” place, to which employees have easy access, says Sara. “Often, employers post the external and internal documents on a large health and safety notice board in a centralized location near the lunch room, punch clock or other well-frequented location.” Under the WSIA, employers must post the ‘In Case of Injury poster,’ along with copies of valid first aid certificates and inspection cards, at the workplace’s first aid station.

3. What if my workplace is virtual/hybrid? Or has multiple sites? “Companies with multiple sites often create a health and safety board at each location,” says Sara. In remote or virtual workplaces, virtual boards are popular. “Just make sure the board isn’t buried somewhere on the intranet, making it hard to find.” Many hybrid workplaces have both a physical and virtual board.

4. Does the material on your health and safety board need to be updated? “While the law doesn’t specify how often to review and update your health and safety board,” says Sara, “it’s expected to have current information.” Since employers are required to review both their health and safety policy and their violence and harassment policy at least annually, these policies should be dated within the last year.

5. How do you let employees/new hires know about this resource? Be sure to include the health and safety board (and first aid station) in your orientation, says Sara. “Make sure workers know they can go to the supervisor if they have any health and safety questions or concerns.”

6. How can workplaces help ensure their employees will actually look at and use the board? Sara has these tips:

  • reduce clutter – “you don’t want a safety board three layers thick”

  • organize the board

  • design safety talks or workplace activities around the board. For example, a safety board scavenger hunt. 

6 Questions Answered poster

How WSPS can help

Training

Checklists

Videos

Other resources

 

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What Are The Benefits?

  • Stay up-to-date on legislative updates, new and emerging hazards, and trending topics in health & safety.
  • Engage in forward thinking discussions, gain knowledge and discover new approaches from industry colleagues.
  • Network with like minded professionals.

Who Is This Recommended For?

These events are suitable for all WSPS members and customers within any industry who wish to expand their health and safety knowledge, share best practices and network with their peers.

  • Health & Safety Professionals
  • Supervisors
  • Managers
  • Health & Safety Representatives
  • H&S Coordinators
  • HR Professionals
  • Operational Leaders

How Can Session Be Delivered?

  • Virtual facilitated presentation – 1.5 hours in length

Click HERE for Workplace Safety & Prevention Services information

About Workplace Safety & Prevention Services

Supporting Healthy & Safe Workplaces in Ontario

Every employer and worker shares responsibility for occupational health and safety. At Workplace Safety & Prevention Services (WSPS), we’re here to provide you with the information and support you need to work safely.

WSPS is a not-for-profit organization offering health and safety expertise and resources to protect Ontario workers and businesses. A trusted safety advisor, we have been making Ontario workplaces safer since 1917.

We Are Part of Ontario’s Occupational Health and Safety System

WSPS is a partner in Ontario’s occupational health and safety system, which includes the Ministry of Labour, Immigration, Training and Skills Development (MLITSD), Workplace Safety and Insurance Board (WSIB), and six health and safety associations (HSAs) – of which we are one.

We support the agricultural, manufacturing, and service sectors, which employ more than 4.2 million people throughout the province. We’re here to help businesses understand their risks and legal obligations to stay in compliance and build safer workplaces.

How WSPS Supports You

We are your health and safety partner, which means we will support you every step of the way, at the level that’s right for you. There are many ways we can help, whether it’s through training and events, certification training, access to legislation and reference materials, research, or customized consulting with one of our experts to help you build your health and safety program.

 

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