November 2015 



Within healthcare, issues like workplace violence, mental health and managing aggressive behaviours are fast becoming high priority areas, as the effects are costly to both the worker and the organization. These issues require leadership and collaboration in setting a solid foundation to ensure 'safety for all'.
Fostering workplace safety is a shared responsibility. We know that workplace violence (WPV) is under reported. In 2014,  approximately 4% of  WCB injury rates were related to WPV and it is likely that more workers are injured and miss time from work, due to this issue. 
The provincial OHS Violence in the Workplace Regulation, requires employers to identify the risks associated with workplace violence and manage them accordingly. Acts of violence do not necessarily require intent to harm. In healthcare and community services, it is often while providing client or patient care that a situation of workplace violence can arise. 
Since 2014, AWARE-NS and WCB have worked in collaboration with a working group of health and community stakeholders in developing and delivering  'Steps for Safety'. This practical 6 step program resource guide, that is in it's final stages of completion, has effective tools, and resources to help guide users to develop a plan, organize efforts to meet legislation and best practices. As the 'Steps'  have been developed, AWARE-NS and WCB have rolled out training around the province to support organizations in developing and implementing their WPV program. All resources can be easily located on our website.   
In this issue of this newsletter, Steps for Safety - Preventing Workplace Violence Program is our main focus. We highlight Workshop 3's components, specifically what training is needed to address the prevention of workplace violence.
Also in the news, is the approval of the AWARE-NS Strategic Plan 2015-2018  and  'Key Areas of Focus'  that will guide our efforts and outcomes over the next 3 years.  The plan can be viewed on the AWARE-NS website. The Board and staff wish to thank all stakeholders and partners who provided input and feedback as we worked through this important process. We will remain accountable by measuring our progress, regular reporting, reflecting and fine tuning the plan that ensures our efforts and outcomes continue to be aligned with our Mission, Vision and Values.

Yours in safety,
Susan Dempsey, Exe cutive Director, AWARE-NS
Steps for Safety: Workplace Violence Prevention - Workshop 3

Step 5 is about the education and awareness training in relation to workplace violence.  
The Nova Scotia Violence in the Workplace Regulation stipulates that an Employer must provide information and adequate training for any employee exposed to a significant risk of violence.  Training must include the following elements:
  • the rights and responsibilities of employees under the Act;
  • the workplace violence prevention statement; (i.e. employer's policy)
  • the measures taken by the employer to minimize or eliminate the risk of violence;
  • how to recognize a situation in which there is a potential for violence and how to respond appropriately;
  • how to respond to an incident of violence, including how to obtain assistance;
  • how to report, document and investigate incidents of violence.
This new workshop has two components. The first is the use of the Framework Tool. This tool will help your organization perform a gap analysis of the categories demonstrated in the image below.

Integral to the success of this framework is effective communication within each component of the cycle.  The second component of the workshop will be communication. Communication is a critical element to ensure that any education provided is understood.
Who should attend this workshop?

CEOs, Directors, Managers, Supervisors and anyone in your organization who is responsible for workplace violence prevention strategies/policies/training etc.

If you would like to attend this session, contact
Any questions can be directed to Trisha 902-832-3868 ext 104 or
1-877-538-7228 ext 104



Workshop 3 is currently being presented by Heather Matthews, AWARE-NS and Louise Barker, WCB. This next step in the "Steps for Safety" series of workplace violence prevention workshops, will provide you with increased knowledge, better communication skills and a tool to help with seamless integration into your organization.


There is still time to get on board for upcoming sessions! Register with Trisha by any of the following methods:

902-832-3868 ext 104

1-877-538-7228 ext 104 


To get the most of these kilometeres travelled, you'll note that Heather will be re-offering Hazard ID in the afternoon. You may register for this as well, if needed. *Please note the difference for Truro in 2016.


Steps for Safety Workshop 
Hazard ID

Tuesday December 8 - Amherst

Wandlyn Inn 9am - noon 

Tuesday December 8 - Amherst

Wandlyn Inn 1pm - 4pm 

Wednesday December 9 -Antigonish

St. Martha's Regional Hospital 9am - noon 

Wednesday December 9 - Antigonish

St. Martha's Regional Hospital 1pm - 4pm 

Monday December 14 - Bedford

Northwood's Ivany Place 9am - noon 

Monday December 14 - Bedford

Northwood's Ivany Place 1pm - 4pm 

Tuesday December 15 - Truro

Wynn Park Villa 9am - noon 

*Wednesday January 13, 2016 - Truro

*Wynn Park Villa 9am - noon 



 Spreading the Word about Workplace Violence


Email for a copy of our Workplace Violence posters. 
There has been tremendous interest and participation in our Steps for Safety workshops. Because of this, we may re-offer Workshop 2 in 2016. Please let us know if this would be of interest to your organization and what part of the province you are located. This information can be sent along to  

OHS Legislation On-Line Training 


Joint Occupational Health and Safety Committee members...have you completed ALL of your committee training? Remember that to receive your final certificate you must complete the classroom sessions and the two courses offered online. You can find these online courses on our website or click on the modules below to begin. 

Modules 1-6
Modules 7-12

After completing these online courses, you will be prompted to complete a form with your details and your final certificate will be processed and sent to you. Thank you for the fantastic participation from all organizations across the province!


By mid-January we will release information/dates of training sessions that will take place in early 2016.



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201 Brownlow Avenue, Unit 1 Dartmouth, B3B 1W2

Phone 1-877-LETS-ACT (538-7228)  Local Phone 1-902-832-3868 
Fax 1-902-832-3445
Social Enterprise

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Upcoming Events...


Make sure to check the Training calendar for regular updates.



New Courses...
WHMIS 2015 (GHS)

NS OHS Act and Regulations
(for JOHS committee

Steps for Safety- Preventing Workplace Violence