EVERY WORKER - Your health and safety partner EVERY WORKER 3 EVERY WORKER 2014 HEALTH AND SAFETY...
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2014 HEALTH AND SAFETY ANNUAL
MINISTRY OF LABOUR 2014 Enforcement of new mandatory
health and safety training
RESEARCH NEWS High risk for new workers
an ongoing issue
CANADIAN STANDARDS ASSOCIATION How does the new national
workplace safety training standard affect you?
HEALTH AND SAFETY AWARD WINNERS
GLOBAL MINE RESCUE CONFERENCE
HAZARD ALERT POSTERS
A THEORY OF INCIDENTS: YOU ARE YOUR BROTHER AND SISTER’S KEEPER Dr. Peter Strahlendorf discusses the Internal Responsibility System
Renewing our commitment to workplace safety
Welcome to 2014! I love a fresh start and look with hope to the year ahead and the opportunities it will bring.
If you make only one resolution this year, I hope it’s to make workplace safety your priority. Each and every individual – from owner to CEO to supervisors and workers – is responsible for health and safety on the job – that’s the heart of the culture of safety known as the Internal Responsibility System (IRS). This issue of Every Worker takes a deep dive into the IRS and the concept that you are your brother and sister’s keeper.
My first order of business as an employer this year is complying with the new 2014 regulation that requires health and safety awareness training for every worker and supervisor in Ontario. To show our passion for workplace health and safety, every employee and every manager at Workplace Safety North will complete the mandatory awareness training by March 31. You technically have until July 1, but why wait? When it comes to health and safety, there’s no time like the present.
For all the changes a new year will bring, three things will stay the same at Workplace Safety North:
1. Our commitment to making workplaces safer. Please use the lifesaving information on the pages of this magazine to renew your commitment to a safe and healthy workplace.
2. Our support to vulnerable workers and workplaces. New and young workers in Ontario are four times more likely to be injured on the job during the first month of employment. Find out what you can do about it on page 12.
3. Our commitment to continuous improvement: the emphasis on standards and the province’s call to support delivery of effective occupational health and safety training will benefit everyone. Read about how training standards affect you on page 14.
I hope you learn something new in this issue of Every Worker that you can use to make your workplace safer in 2014. Drop me a line and let me know what you think.
Candys Ballanger-Michaud President and CEO Workplace Safety North email@example.com
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Editor: Meg Parker Design: Brant Schewe
WORKPLACE SAFETY NORTH
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EVERY WORKER 2014 HEALTH AND SAFETY ANNUAL
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EVERY WORKER 2014 HEALTH AND SAFETY ANNUAL
4 A theory of incidents: You are your brother and sister’s keeper
8 Enforcement of new mandatory health and safety training in 2014
12 High risk for new workers an ongoing issue
14 How does the new national workplace safety training standard affect you?
18 Global mine rescue conference wraps up with field trip to Sudbury
23 Health and safety excellence in Ontario workplaces recognized by Workplace Safety North
HAZARD ALERTS — PLEASE POST
17 Mining Sector
Wheel rim assembly failures
19 Forestry Sector
Beware the chicot danger zone
21 Paper, Printing and Converting Sector
Work safely around guardrails – never reach through or over top
14 Want the latest health and safety news for Ontario’s forestry, mining, and paper, printing, and converting sectors delivered directly to your inbox? Subscribe to monthly e-newsletter Every Worker by visiting workplacesafetynorth.ca > Publications or e-mail email@example.com
A theory of incidents: You are your brother and sister’s keeper
Occupational health and safety expert Dr. Peter Strahlendorf discusses the Internal Responsibility System
Strathcona Paper employee Teresa Hall Ebbers and Workplace Safety North consultant Jerry Traer.
Have you ever walked by a potentially hazardous situation – like a puddle on the floor – and done nothing about it? Perhaps you assumed it was someone else’s responsibility or maybe you spoke up and nothing was done. You’re not alone, according to occupational health and safety expert Dr. Peter Strahlendorf.
During a health and safety conference hosted by Workplace Safety North, Strahlendorf spoke with WSN about the Internal Responsibility System (IRS), along with other health and safety issues in Canadian workplaces. With degrees in biology, environmental studies as well as a doctorate in law, Strahlendorf has consulted in the areas of occupational and environmental health and safety since 1983, and is currently a professor at Ryerson University’s School of Occupational and Public Health.
Who can cause an incident? Anyone.
The theory behind workplace injury, illness, or fatality is that they are symptomatic of a larger problem within the workplace system. There is a domino effect regarding responsibility, writes Strahlendorf in his 2001 article The Internal Responsibility System for Occupational Health and Safety Canada magazine:
If a worker makes a mistake and causes an accident, we can see how very often there was a prior failure of a supervisor to train, coach, observe, job plan, motivate, and so on. So, if the supervisor can be said to have caused the accident in part, then we can see that frequently the manager did not properly select and train the supervisor, or did not develop programs needed by the supervisor, or did not properly allocate resources or staff the workplace.
Where the direct causes of an accident involve unsafe conditions, tools, machines, processes and structures, we can often bypass the worker and supervisor in our causal analysis and see the failure of the mid-level to senior manager to properly apply design standards or allocate resources.
Managers cause accidents; they just cause them in different ways than workers and supervisors. However many layers there are in an organization we can see a causal connection back to the accident. Presidents cause accidents. They can fail to lead, to set policy, to ensure a proper delegation of authority, to inspire a proper safety culture, to design a workable organizational structure or to allocate resources.
To really drive down risk you would not just focus exclusively on the CEO because some accident causation chains will commence at stages later in the sequence. You would not focus only on the worker because the causes sometimes lie higher up.
Who can cause an accident? Anyone. Who can take steps to prevent accidents? Anyone. Who should be taking steps to prevent accidents and exposures? Everyone. Who should be responsible for health and safety in the organization? Everyone. And that is the basis of the IRS in accident theory.
The culture of safety, known as the Internal Responsibility System is one in which each and every individual – from owner and CEO to supervisors and workers – is responsible for health and safety on the job.
“There’s always something to talk about in terms of reducing risks; it’s part of the role of the supervisor to encourage people to speak up.”
“Everyone at all levels takes the initiative on health and safety,” according to Strahlendorf. “As well, everyone is obligated to report unresolved concerns upward and to respond properly to the unresolved concerns of others.”
Artificial separation of safety from work
Reporting a health and safety problem instead of fixing it, Strahlendorf explains, is usually the result of poor labour relations and general misunderstandings in the workplace – typical symptoms of a poor Internal Responsibility System.
To demonstrate what the IRS is not, Strahlendorf shares a story about common workplace winter doormats. “I remember a workplace