In this issue:

 Preparing to Reopen
Wilkens Health and Safety Solutions (WHSS) is the only Chief Prevention Officer (CPO) approved Joint Health and Safety Committee (JHSC) Certification training provider located in Kingston.  

As most workplaces with twenty (20) or more workers must have a JHSC established, we regularly hold training sessions. At least one (1) worker and one (1) management representative of this committee must be certified by completing the prescribed training standards set by the MOL.  

Part One  Basic Certification Training 
Part One B asic Certification training  provides an overall knowledge of the Health and Safety Legislation that applies to most workplaces.  

Part Two Workplace Specific  Training 
Part Two Workplace Specific  Certification training focuses on the significant hazards in your workplace and how to assess, control and/or eliminate them.
Refresher Certification  Training 
This course is designed to include all sectors and reviews the essentials of the Part 1 and 2 Certification training as well as highlight any legislative changes that have occurred within the last three years.
Visit our website   to register for the Part 1, Part 2 or Refresher Certification Courses.

Glencore Canada Corporation Fined $110,000 After Workers Injured

March 11, 2020

On May 9, 2018, a Toronto company, Glencore Canada Corporation failed to ensure that a rail car has been depressurized before the transfer line was disconnected, resulting in an uncontrolled spray of 98% sulfuric acid, injuring three workers. The Company was fined $110,000 plus a 25% victim surcharge.

Vixman Construction Ltd. Sentenced to $125,000 fine and 18 Months' Probation After Workplace Fatality at Billy Bishop Airport

February 12, 2020

A worker suffered fatal injuries after falling from his work surface and hitting the ground while installing corrugated steel sheeting. Vixman Constructions Ltd. was sentenced to a fine of $125,000 and 18 months probation for failing as an employer to ensure measures and procedures prescribed in section 26.2 (2) and 26.6 (3) of O. Reg 213/91 were carried out in the Occupational Health and Safety Act. The court also imposed a 25% victim surcharge.

Changes to Work Practices
Industry-Specific Guidelines

As the Ontario Government announces the gradual reopening of our economy and we are slowly getting closer and closer to reopening our local businesses, many of you are assessing the potential risks of spreading COVID-19 in your businesses as you are preparing to reopen. Your workplace may look quite different than it did when you closed or decreased business hours and services.

The government of Ontario has released over 90 guidelines that Wilkens Health and Safety Solutions has summarized for you! These guidelines include the use of Personal Protective Equipment, working remotely, how to physical distance in the workplace and more.

If you are a current Health and Safety Excellence program member, you can access these under our online portal. If you are not a member of the Health and Safety Excellence program, you can get these fact sheets on our website or by contacting us directly at Wilkens Health and Safety Solutions.

If you have questions about the guidelines for your industry, please contact Wiebke Wilkens at 613.546.9814 ext. 221 or or contact Sarah Salisbury at 613.217.0253 or

Workplace Hazard
Heat Stress

Many workplaces that have remained open or are beginning to open have employees working outside in the heat. Heat Stress is considered a workplace hazard and an employer must have the proper policies and procedures in place to mitigate the risk. Heat stress can causes illnesses, such as:
  • Heat rash;
  • Heat cramps;
  • Fainting;
  • Heat exhaustion; and,
  • Heat stroke.
Employers and Supervisors must ensure that employees have been trained on the symptoms of heat stress illnesses, provide access to potable water, schedule enough first aiders and have a procedure in place to assess and reduce the risk.

For more information on managing heat stress in the workplace, click here. You can also contact Wiebke Wilkens or Sarah Salisbury for more information.

Mental Health in the Workplace
Mental Health Tip

The ever-changing events surrounding the COVID-19 pandemic can easily make anyone feel overwhelmed. We are all experiencing different degrees of a normal reaction to an abnormal event.

During times of high anxiety and stress, it is important to limit your news consumption and non-essential information. Much of the same information is repeated on different media platforms and
 it is best to only follow only credible information from government bodies and reliable news sources.  

If you or someone you know are experiencing distress, please call your local distress centre.

For more information, check out the Resource Hub from the Mental Health Commission of Canada or contact Wiebke Wilkens or Sarah Salisbury for more information.

Health and Safety Excellence program
Updates to the Program

For current members:

Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, our previously scheduled meeting in April was postponed. Wilkens Health and Safety Solutions will be contacting all current members with details of our next meeting. By now, current members should have their topics chosen and an Action Plan completed for us to review. Once this is completed, the next step is implementing your chosen topics! If you have not chosen your topics with Wiebke and Sarah yet, please get in touch with us so that we can choose them with you.

For companies wanting to join the program:

We are still accepting new firms, as well as participants of the previous WSIB health and safety incentive programs (i.e.: Safety Groups, Small Business and Workwell) until June 30, 2020. If you have questions about the program or you would like to register, please contact Wiebke Wilkens by email or at 613.546.9814 ext. 221 or Sarah Salisbury by email or at 613.217.0253.

Human Resources
Leaves of Absence

Declared Emergency Leave

While there has always been a Declared Emergency Leave under the Employment Standards Act (ESA, 2000), it is only in effect when there is a declared State of Emergency. Due to COVID-19 an order under the Emergency Management and Civil Protection Act and the Health Protection and Promotion Act has been made, making this leave effective and it must be followed.

Infectious Disease Emergency Leave
Employees are entitled to this leave of absence if they are unable to work due to a specific infectious disease. Currently, this leave only applies to the COVID-19 pandemic.

Due to the uncertainty of the virus and state of emergency, these leaves do not have a specified time period of how long an employee can remain on a leave. Employees are entitled to this leave and it is considered a job protected leave similar to other more common leaves such as pregnancy or parental leaves. This means that an employer cannot terminate or penalize an employee for taking the leave of absence due to being COVID-19 positive.

For more information on these leaves and your responsibilities as an employer, please refer to the Ministry's Guide to the Employment Standards Act or contact Sarah Salisbury, Associate Consultant at 613.217.0253 or by email

 Ministry of Labour, Training and Skills   Development Program Initiatives
Upcoming Provincial / Eastern Ontario Inspection Initiatives

Sector / Business
Health & Safety
Motor Vehicle & Mobile Equipment Hazards
All Sectors
April 1 - June 26, 2020
Health & Safety
Health Workers in Healthy Workplaces - Occupational Disease
All Sectors
October 1 - December 28, 2020
Health & Safety
Supervision in Construction
May 4 - August 7, 2020
Health & Safety
Safe Transition/Transfer of Care
Health Care
June 1, 2020 - February 1, 2021
Health & Safety
Temporary Help Agencies
May 1 - August 31, 2020
Health & Safety
Workplace Violence in Education
April 1, 2020 - March 31, 2021
Health & Safety
Warehousing (Ergonomics)
Specialized Professional Services
April 1, 2020 - March 31, 2021
*Please note that the Ministry of Labour, Training and Skills Development has stated that these dates may be adjusted due to the COVID-19 Pandemic. We will keep you informed as updates become available.

View the full schedule  here .

For help preparing for an upcoming inspection,  contact us  today. 

Upcoming WHSS Courses
Register your employees today!

JHSC Certification Part 2 - Industrial
June 8-9, 2020
8:30 am - 4:30 pm
Mental Health First Aid
June 18-19, 2020
8:30 am - 4:00 pm
JHSC Certification Part 1 - Basic
June 24-26, 2020
8:30 am - 4:30 pm
JHSC Refresher Certification
June 30, 2020
8:30 am - 4:30 pm
JHSC Certification Part 2 - Healthcare
July 9-10, 2020
8:30 am - 4:30 pm
JHSC Certification Part 2 - Industrial
July 23-24, 2020
8:30 am - 4:30 pm
JHSC Certification Part 1 - Basic
August 12-14, 2020
8:30 am - 4:30 pm
The above mentioned courses are still running, provided that the current Provincial State of Emergency continues to allow this. Courses scheduled will be presented in a safe manner, following physical distancing protocols and safe work practices. Registration is limited due to this restriction.

Private on-site courses can also be arranged for groups of six (6) or more. Please contact Ciara Keech  for details.

WHSS continues to be a training partner for Working at Heights with the Infrastructure Health and Safety Association (IHSA). Contact us today to arrange your full or refresher course. Courses are scheduled on an as needed basis and can be held at your site or at the Kingston Construction Association (KCA).

For a complete listing of upcoming courses, click here or contact Ciara Keech by email or at 613.546.9814 ext. 225 for more details.
Contact Us

t:   613-546-9814

"Specializing in incident prevention and mitigation strategies."

- Wiebke Wilkens