Policy on Occupational Safety and Health

Gives direction to departments and agencies on providing employees with a safe and healthy working environment, as well as occupational health services, thereby reducing the incidence of occupational injuries and illnesses.
Date modified: 1994-12-22

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Glossary

employer (employeur)

Under the Canada Labour Code (CLC), Part II, this term means a person who employs one or more employees and includes an employers' organization and any person who acts on behalf of an employer. In the Public Service context the term includes an agency acting on behalf of the Treasury Board, a department or any person who acts in a supervisory or managerial capacity on behalf of a department.

Treasury Board Occupational Safety and Health (OSH) standards (Normes de sécurité et de santé au travail du Conseil du Trésor)

The expression is self-explanatory. However, it should be noted that most of these standards are:

  • based on the CLC Part II regulations;
  • consulted upon in the National Joint Council and, therefore, have the force of collective agreements.

Since Treasury Board OSH standards and regulations pursuant to Part II of the Canada Labour Code are legal requirements, in the case of differences the most stringent requirement is the operative one.

Human Resources Development Canada - Labour Program as regulator (Développement des ressources humaines Canada - Programme du Travail, organisme de réglementation)

The Public Service became subject to CLC Part II (Part IV as it was then known) on March 31, 1986, by an amendment to the Financial Administration Act. Prior to that, Human Resources Development Canada - Labour Program provided certain OSH services to departments as a corporate resource.

Human Resources Development Canada - Labour Program is now (as it always has been for other employers under the federal jurisdiction) the regulator for the Public Service on OSH matters. Its responsibility is to monitor and enforce the CLC Part II. With this in mind, it is instructive to read in the CLC Part II the duties assigned to employers and the penalties for contraventions.

To carry out its role, Human Resources Development Canada - Labour Program has designated safety officers and regional safety officers. Their duties include inspections, accident and refusal-to-work investigations and the stipulation of corrective measures.

It should be noted that Human Resources Development Canada - Labour Program has also appointed officials from:

  • Transport Canada's Civil Aviation Directorate, to act as safety officers and regional safety officers in the administration of CLC Part II and the Aviation Occupational Safety and Health Regulations (for public servants employed in aircraft in operation);
  • Transport Canada's Marine Safety Directorate, to act as safety officers and regional safety officers in the administration of CLC Part II and the Marine Occupational Safety and Health Regulations (for public servants working on ships registered in Canada, or in the loading and unloading of ships).
  • Transport Canada's Rail Safety Directorate, to act as safety officers and regional safety officers in the administration of CLC Part II and the On-Board Trains Occupational Safety and Health Regulations (for public servants working on board trains while in operation).
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