December 2022

Welcome to COCA's monthly Newsletter. Unless noted otherwise, all articles are written by COCA President Ian Cunningham.

Employers Will Require Naloxone Kits and Trained Staff in June 2023 

Schedule 4 of Bill 88, An Act to Enact the Digital Platform Workers’ Rights Act, 2022 and to amend various Acts contained amendments to the Occupational Health and Safety Act that require certain employers to have naloxone kits and workers trained in their use at their workplaces. 

Bill 88 was passed into law, but the sections dealing with Naloxone kits were left to come into force at a later date. On December 14th, the Minister of Labour, Immigration, Training and Skills Development, Monte McNaughton, announced that the Naloxone provisions will come into force on June 1, 2023. This gives construction employers lots of time to determine if they need naloxone kits at their workplaces and, if they do, to get workers trained in their use. Fortunately, the kits will be made available at no charge to qualifying employers, and the training in the use of the kits is fairly straightforward. Here’s what those provisions say:  

Note: On June 1, 2023, the day named by proclamation of the Lieutenant Governor, the Act is amended by adding the following section: (See: 2022, c. 7, Sched. 4, s. 1) 

Naloxone kits 

25.2 (1) Where an employer becomes aware, or ought reasonably to be aware, that there may be a risk of a worker having an opioid overdose at a workplace where that worker performs work for the employer, or where the prescribed circumstances exist, the employer shall, 
(a) provide and maintain in good condition a naloxone kit in that workplace; and 
(b) comply with any other prescribed requirements respecting the provision and maintenance of naloxone kits and the training referred to in subsection (3). 2022, c. 7, Sched. 4, s. 1. 

Location of kit 

(2) The employer shall ensure that, at any time there are workers in the workplace, the naloxone kit is in the charge of a worker who works in the vicinity of the kit and who has received the training described in subsection (3). 2022, c. 7, Sched. 4, s. 1. 


(3) The training shall include training to recognize an opioid overdose, to administer naloxone and to acquaint the worker with any hazards related to the administration of naloxone, and shall meet such other requirements as may be prescribed. 2022, c. 7, Sched. 4, s. 1. 

Limit on disclosure 

(4) No employer shall disclose to any person more personal information than is reasonably necessary to comply with this section. 2022, c. 7, Sched. 4, s. 1. 
Employer duties 

(5) For greater certainty, the employer duties set out in section 25 apply, as appropriate, with respect to the administration of naloxone in the workplace. 2022, c. 7, Sched. 4, s. 1. 

(6) In this section, “naloxone kit” means a kit that includes the prescribed contents. 2022, c. 7, Sched. 4, s. 1. 

For a period of up to two years, Ontario will provide free: 
  • nasal spray naloxone kits to businesses at risk of opioid overdoses through the Workplace Naloxone Program; and  
  • free training needed to equip staff with the tools to respond to an opioid overdose. 

Businesses can determine if they are eligible for the program and find additional information on accessing naloxone kits and training at  

Once the requirement is in effect, Ministry of Labour, Immigration, Training and Skills Development’s inspectors will take an education-first approach to enforcement. 

Ontario Legislature Adjourns for Winter Break 

The Ontario Legislature rose for its winter break on Thursday, December 8th, leaving only one Government Bill, Bill 46 Less Red Tape, Stronger Ontario Act 2022 on the order paper to be carried over into the spring session. All other Government business was passed into law, including Bill 39 known popularly as “the Strong Mayors Act” and Bill 51 which strips the Speaker of significant powers and gives them over to the Board of Internal Economy. The Legislature will resume sitting on February 21, 2023. 
Prompt Payment and Adjudication rules took effect on Oct. 1, 2019, and apply to all construction projects, with few exceptions. COCA has developed resources for COCA’s members to share with their members.

The Prompt Payment and Adjudication webpage can be found on the COCA website at: OR (

COCA has developed eight facts sheets to help you navigate Prompt Payment and Adjudication. 

  • Prompt Payment and Adjudication for Owners
  • Prompt Payment for Contractors
  • Prompt Payment for Sub-Contractors
  • Prompt Payment and Adjudication 101
  • Prompt Payment for Holdbacks
  • How Does the Basic Holdback Work
  • What is a Proper Invoice
  • Adjudication Basics
LiUNA Rejoins Building Trades 

To the surprise of many, on December 6th it was announced that the labourers International Union of North America, (LiUNA) had rejoined the Provincial Building and Construction Trades Council of Ontario after a five-year break from membership in the provincial federation of trade unions. At a signing ceremony to mark the occasion, credit for bringing the two groups together was given to Marc Arsenault of the Building Trades and Joe Mancinelli of LiUNA.
Ontario Election Spending Surprise – NDP Raised & Spent the Most

  • During the 2022 Ontario general election campaign period, the NDP spent just under $13 million and won 30 seats. 
  • During the same period, the PCs spent $11.5 million and won 83 seats
  • The Liberals spent $9.6 million and won just 8 seats
  • During the campaign period, the NDP raised $3 million, the PCs took in $2.3 million and the Libs $2.15 million
  • When the dust settled after the contest, the NDP was left with debts totalling $9.4 million, the PCs with $8.7 million and the Liberals $7.5 million
Angus Reid Poll Says Premier Ford’s Approval Rating in Decline 

The Angus Reid Institute conducted an online survey of 5,030 Canadians including 1.050 Ontarians, about their opinions of their own premiers. Here’s what Ontarians think about Premier Ford: 
  • 8% strongly approve 
  • 26% approve 
  • 19% disapprove  
  • 46% strongly disapprove 
  • 2% are unsure 
  • Ford’s strongly approve + approve in December 2021 stood at 30%, in March 2022 at 43%, in June 2022 at 45%, in September 2022 at 41% and in December 2022 at 34% 
  • ARI analysis suggests Ford’s use of the notwithstanding clause to take away the Charter Rights to collective bargaining from low paid education workers and then reversing course is responsible to some degree for his low approval rating. 
For the full story, click on the following link: 
Did the Tories Snatch Defeat from the Jaws of Victory in Mississauga-Lakeshore? 
Few politicians, if any are more disliked in Ontario than our current Prime Minister, Justin Trudeau and our former Premier, Kathleen Wynne. So, it seemed to me that victory for Tory candidate Ron Chhinzer in Monday’s Mississauga-Lakeshore by-election should have been a slam dunk.

He was riding on the (perceived) tsunami of the popularity of Pierre of PC leader Pierre Polievre. He was running against the Trudeau government, its questionable record and against Kathleen Wynne’s former finance minister, Charles Sousa. The playing field couldn’t have been set more perfectly for a Tory victory in this swing riding that was situated squarely on the path to victory in every federal (and provincial) general election. But it didn’t happen. The Liberal won with more than 51% of the vote. 

What does the liberal “hold” in Mississauga-Lakeshore say? 
  1. That all the positive buzz from the “all-in for Polievre” types that Polievre is a cinch to become our next PM isn’t real right now 
  2. As a political leader and candidate for the position of Prime Minister, Polievre isn’t quite there yet; he has some way to go, maybe a long way. He has to become more consumer/voter-friendly and not so scary. And he has to summon up the courage to lead and go into ridings where there is little chance of a Tory victory and listen to the people, even those that disagree with him. And he has to learn to deal with the media rather than avoid it.    
  3. It’s not enough to be against Trudeau; the Tories have to present a winning message.  

There’s lots of time between now and the next federal election for Polievre to develop the skills and the messaging and find the courage that will make him appear to at least 40% of Canadians that he is the best candidate to be Prime Minister. 
Second Education Workers’ Bargaining Unit and Province Come to Terms 

The Government of Ontario, the Canadian Union of Public Employees, and the Ontario Council of Education Workers (OCEW) recently struck a tentative collective bargaining agreement. It came close on the heels of the deal consummated recently between the Province and the Canadian Union of Public Employees representing 55,000 education workers. OCEW is a consortium of six unions that represent education workers, and it serves as their bargaining agent. Those unions are: 
  • COPE Ontario,  
  • Essex and Kent Counties Skilled Trades Council,  
  • Labourers’ International Union of North America,  
  • Maintenance and Construction Skilled Trades Council,  
  • Ontario Public Service Employees Union, and  
  • Unifor 
he tentative agreement is yet to be ratified by the unions’ members. 
Prompt Payment Champion Ponders Liberal Party Leadership

It has been reported that former Ontario Attorney General Yasir Naqvi is considering pursuing the leadership of the Ontario Liberals. 
  • Naqvi came to Canada from Pakistan with his family at the age of 15 
  • He earned a Bachelor of Science, Life Sciences degree in 1994 and a Bachelor of Arts, Political Science degree in 1996 from McMaster University  
  • He went on to earn an LLB in 1999 from Ottawa University and a Master of Arts in International Affairs in 2008 from Carleton University  
  • He has also earned the ICD.D designation for corporate governance from the Rotman School of Management at the University of Toronto 
  • Before entering elected politics, he practised law for several years and was a part-time professor at the University of Ottawa U Law School 
  • He was first elected to the Ontario Legislature in the Ottawa Centre riding in 2007 and was re-elected in 2011 and 2014 but lost his seat in the 2018 general election that swept the highly unpopular Kathleen Wynne led  Liberals out of power 
  • During his time in the Ontario Legislature, he served as Minister of Labour, Minister of Community Safety and Correctional Services, Government House Leader and Attorney General 
  • During his time as Attorney General, Naqvi distinguished himself as a true champion leading the charge for prompt payment in construction projects. Without Naqvi, there would be no reformed Construction Lien Act, no prompt payment regime and no adjudication to resolve construction disputes quickly, which are all in place today 
  • Following his defeat in 2018, he was appointed CEO of the Institute for Canadian Citizenship 
  • In 2021 he successfully campaigned for the Ottawa Centre seat in the Canadian Parliament, where he currently serves as Parliamentary Secretary of the King’s Privy Council for Canada and the Minister of Emergency Services and as a member of the Standing Committee on Justice and Human Rights and as a member of the Special Joint Committee on the Declaration of Emergency. 
  • Naqvi is a proven organizer, is well respected within Liberal circles and has a wide and influential network of friends within the Party. 

Other prominent Grits believed to be mulling it over are MP Nathaniel Erskine-Smith (Beaches-East York), MPPs Mitzie Hunter (Scarborough-Guildwood) and Ted Hsu (Kingston and the Islands) and Paramount Fine Foods owner Mohamad Fakih.   

Rules for the contest for the leadership of the Liberal Party of Ontario are not yet known.   
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TGS has created a seven module core training product.

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Council of Ontario Construction Associations
926 - 123 Edward Street
Toronto ON M5G 1E2
COCA Staff
Ian Cunningham
Operations Manager
Martin Benson
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926 - 123 Edward Street
Toronto ON M5G 1E2
Phone: (416) 968-7200