An occupational health and safety program must be initiated and maintained by each employer with 20 or more workers in a workplace determined to be not low risk, or 50 or more workers in a workplace determined to be low risk. The risk factor of your workplace is determined by the hazard rating of your industry. For example, hotels and restaurants are classified as low risk. Take a moment to look up your own hazard rating.
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Contents of an occupational health and safety program
A formal occupational health-and-safety program must include the following:
(a) a statement of the employer's aims and the responsibilities of the employer, supervisors and workers;
(b) provision for the regular inspection of premises, equipment, work methods and work practices, at appropriate intervals, to ensure that prompt action is undertaken to correct any hazardous conditions found;
(c) appropriate written instructions, available for reference by all workers, to supplement the Occupational Health and Safety Regulation;
(d) provision for holding periodic management meetings for the purpose of reviewing health-and-safety activities and incident trends, and for the determination of necessary courses of action;
(e) provision for the prompt investigation of incidents to determine the action necessary to prevent their recurrence;
(f) the maintenance of records and statistics, including reports of inspections and incident investigations, with provision for making this information available to the joint committee or worker health and safety representative, as applicable and, upon request, to an officer, the union representing the workers at the workplace or, if there is no union, the workers at the workplace; and
(g) provision by the employer for the instruction and supervision of workers in the safe performance of their work.
Operations with a workforce of fewer than 20 workers must initiate and maintain a less formal program. Such programs must include regular monthly meetings with workers for discussion of health-and-safety matters, the correction of unsafe conditions and practices, and the maintenance of a cooperative interest in the health and safety of the workforce. The employer must maintain a record of the meetings and the matters discussed.
Information provided by HARRIS & COMPANY. For more information about HARRIS & COMPANY, please visit harrisco.com.