Williams HR Law LLP

Increased Occupational Health and Safety Enforcement in Essential Workplaces in Ontario

April 21, 2020

Ontario recently announced that it is increasing health and safety enforcement to ensure that essential workplaces operating during the COVID-19 pandemic are complying with the Occupational Health and Safety Act and the province’s emergency orders under the Emergency Management and Civil Protection Act.

These measures include:

  • calling for recently retired health and safety inspectors to return to their positions, if they are able and willing to do so;
  • redeploying more than 30 employment standards officers to aid businesses in understanding and complying with their health and safety obligations;
  • deploying as many as 30 specialists from health and safety organizations to assist workers and employers in the field;
  • doubling the capacity of Ontario’s Health and Safety Call Centre by adding 25 additional phonelines; and
  • issuing health and safety guidance notes that are specific to certain sectors.

The government has stated that these measures are intended to make essential workplaces in Ontario safer and to help stop the spread of COVID-19 through more workplace inspections and greater capacity to receive and address health and safety complaints.

This blog is provided as an information service and summary of workplace legal issues. This information is not intended as legal advice.