In this issue:

When the Weather Changes, So Do Workplace Hazards
JOINT HEALTH & SAFETY COMMITTEE CERTIFICATION TRAINING
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 Basic 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.

IN THE NEWS
London Company, Supervisor Fined Total of $97,000 Following Two Incidents of Worker Injury

November 3, 2020

A worker was struck and injured by material that fell of a trailer during the loading process in 2018. In 2019, another worker suffered a permanent injury while processing material in a machine. The company, AGF Rebar Inc. was fined a total of $95,000 and a supervisor was fined $2000 in provincial offences court. The court also imposed a 25% victim surcharge as required by the Provincial Offences Act. 

Worker Injured by Reversing Bulldozer, Construction Company Fined $90,000 in Ottawa

October 30, 2020

A worker received critical injuries after contact with a reversing bulldozer. The operator of the bulldozer should have had the assistance of a signaller watching for people who may have been in the path of the bulldozer. Following a guilty plea, Aecon Construction East Limited was fined $90,000 in provincial offences court. The court also imposed a 25% victim surcharge. 

Workplace Hazard
Winter Driving

In Ontario, motor vehicle accidents account for more than 38% of all worker traumatic fatalities. Now that we are entering winter, it is even more important to ensure that your employees are safe on the road.

Whether you provide your staff with work vehicles or your staff are responsible for using their own for travel, you can follow these suggestions to help protect your staff while driving in winter weather:
  1. Ensure that all vehicles are prepared for winter driving. This includes checking the batteries, lights, brakes, tires, wipers and more;
  2. Make sure that your staff are aware of safe and defensive driving techniques;
  3. Provide or ensure that staff have a winter driving kit in their vehicle;
  4. Have policies and procedures in place to promote responsible and safe driving; and
  5. Monitor workplace driving, if possible to make sure they are following the safe driving policies and procedures.
Workplace Safety North provides more details on each these suggestions. You can access the article by clicking here.

If you are looking for more direction or need a Safe Driving policy written for your business, contact us at 613.546.9814 or at www.whss.ca.


Workplace Hazard
Cold Stress

Even though it is starting to get colder, many employees still need to be outside to complete their job duties. While there are no minimum or maximum exposure limits and temperatures for cold working environments, employers are expected to follow the American Conference of Governmental Industrial Hygienists (ACGIH) Guidelines for cold stress, as a best practice.

For work that is being done at or below the wind child temperature of -12 degrees Celsius, work should include:
  • Constant supervision, either by having a Supervisor present or a buddy system;
  • Adjusting the pace or rate of work so that heavy sweating does not occur, resulting in wet clothing;
  • Providing time for new employees to become accustomed to the conditions;
  • Providing time for employees to become accustomed to weight and bulkiness of clothing, as well as any weighted objects that need to be lifted by the employee;
  • Arrange work in a way that minimizes sitting and standing for long periods; and
  • Provide instruction and training on safe work practices, re-warming and proper clothing practices, as well as other procedures that can create an increase of cold stress on the body.
For more information these guidelines and on cold stress, click the link here.

Want additional information or need a Cold Stress policy written for your business? Contact us at 613.546.9814 or at www.whss.ca.


Mental Health
Holiday Season

The holidays can be emotionally overwhelming during a typical year, but this is even more so the case this year with the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic. The pressures and expectations of the holiday season can amplify the feelings of depression, anxiety and loneliness. Here are some tips from the Canadian Mental Health Association on reducing holiday stress:
  1. Acknowledge your feelings and know that it is okay to express what you are feeling.
  2. Reach out to friends or other social supports. While this might look different during a pandemic, you can meet socially distanced or virtually.
  3. Be realistic. Traditions and rituals are going to look different this year and you may need to find new ways to celebrate.
  4. Set aside differences with family and friends.
  5. Stick to a budget. Before you go shopping, figure out how much you can afford.
  6. Plan ahead and set aside specific days for baking, food prep, shopping, etc.
  7. Learn to say no when you're feeling like you cannot participate in all activities.
  8. Don't abandon healthy habits such as getting proper sleep, eating well and exercising.
  9. Take a breather and make time for yourself.
  10. Seek professional help if you need it. Sometimes we can do everything right and still need help. That is okay. Reach out to a professional when you need it.
For more information, click here. For more information on promoting mental wellbeing in the workplace, contact our office at 613.546.9814 or at info@whss.ca .


Health and Safety Excellence program
Provider Updates

Program status:

At this point, all companies that are currently registered with Wilkens Health and Safety Solutions as their program provider, should be working on gathering their documents for evidence and creating their evidence stories to be submitted for validation. Once these items are ready to be reviewed, please send the information to us at Wilkens Health and Safety Solutions for review. We will assist you in the next steps submitting for validation.

*If you have not chosen your topics with the WHSS team and have not completed your Action Plan,
you need to speak with us as soon as possible so that we can move you to the 2021 program.

For those companies who have paid for the Premium membership, we are working on your topic policies and will have them ready for you prior to submitting your validation documents.

REMINDER: Our program runs on a calendar year basis. For you to qualify for the next rebate cycle, you must submit all documentation by November 30, 2020 to facilitate your company receiving your financial recognition in February 2021. If your company is not ready to submit by November 30, we can submit after that date and you will be eligible for either the May or August rebate cycle.

2021 Program:
Registration for the 2021 Health and Safety Excellence program is now open! We are currently accepting registrations for both new and returning members. You can register for the full program with Wilkens Health and Safety Solutions until March 31, 2021.

If you have questions about the program or would like to register or the 2021 program, please contact us at 613.546.9814 or by emailing info@whss.ca.


COVID-19 Update
Ministry of Labour, Training and Skills Development Release New Guidelines

Effective October 2, 2020, the Ontario Government enacted an order for mandatory masks to be worn in all public, indoor spaces. As an employer, this means that you must require your employees to wear a face covering when working in an environment where they welcome members of the public into your public, indoor establishment. Employees must also wear face coverings when they enter a client's home.

To assist you in implementing the mandatory mask policy into your workplace, the Ministry of Labour, Training and Skills Development has released new guidelines on October 30, 2020 to assist employers in creating a COVID-19 Workplace Safety Plan and how to use masks in the workplace. To access this information, please follows the links below:
As a reminder, if your business is open to the public, all patrons entering your business must also wear a face covering. The face covering must be worn in the establishment at all times, unless it is reasonably required to temporarily remove the face covering for services provided by the business. Please also remember that your service technicians should be wearing masks whenever they enter a client's home or establishment.

A person is exempt from wearing a face covering if:

  • The person is a child under age two (2) or under the age of five (5) if the child refuses to wear one and the caregiver cannot persuade them to wear one;
  • Wearing the face covering inhibits the person's ability to breath; and
  • For any other medical reason that the person cannot safety wear a face covering.
For more information on this order or for assistance in creating your COVID-19 Safety Plan, you can contact Wiebke Wilkens or Sarah Salisbury at Wilkens Health and Safety Solutions.


WHSS News
We're Hiring!

Wilkens Health and Safety Solutions is looking for a qualified candidate to serve our high risk clients including the construction, industrial and surface mining sectors. The successful candidate must have experience working in these industries and have a strong working knowledge of the health and safety legislation and sector specific requirements for these groups of businesses. This position is part-time with the potential of full-time work in the future.

If you would like more information or would like to apply for this position, please email your questions or application to Wiebke Wilkens at wwilkens@whss.ca.


Human Resources
Our Services

Many of our clients are aware that we provide consulting, policy and procedure creation, as well as training for Health and Safety in your workplace, but did you know that we also provide the same services for Human Resources issues? We can assist you in creating Human Resources policies for your Supervisors and employees, assist with writing employee letters, help with training your employees and more.

For more information on our Human Resources services and what you need in place, contact Sarah Salisbury, Associate Consultant at 613.546.9814 ext. 222 or by email

 
 Ministry of Labour, Training and Skills   Development Program Initiatives
Upcoming Provincial / Eastern Ontario Inspection Initiatives
Program
Focus
Sector / Business
 Date
Health & Safety
Health Workers in Healthy Workplaces - Occupational Disease
All Sectors
October 1 - December 28, 2020
Health & Safety
Tower Crane Inspection and Maintenance
Construction
August 31, 2020 - December 31, 2020
Health & Safety
Safe Transition/Transfer of Care
Health Care
June 1, 2020 - February 1, 2021
Health & Safety
Workplace Violence in Education
Industrial
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!

Course
Date
Time
JHSC Refresher*
November 27, 2020
8:30 am - 4:30 pm
JHSC Certification Part 2 - Healthcare
December 3 - 4, 2020
8:30 am - 4:30 pm
JHSC Certification Part 2 - Industrial
December 14 - 15, 2020
8:30 am - 4:30 pm
JHSC Certification Part 1 - Basic
January 20 - 22, 2021
8:30 am - 4:30 pm
JHSC Certification Part 2 - Industrial
February 4 - 5, 2021
8:30 am - 4:30 pm
JHSC Refresher*
February 8, 2021
8:30 am - 4:30 pm
JHSC Certification Part 2 - Healthcare
February 25 - 26, 2021
8:30 am - 4:30 pm
JHSC Certification Part 1 - Basic
March 8 - 10, 2021
8:30 am - 4:30 pm

*The Ministry of Labour Training and Skills Development has set November 30, 2020 as the deadline for anyone to take their one-day refresher JHSC Certification course if they were due for a Refresher Course between March and November 30, 2020. To avoid having to re-do your full certification training (both Part 1 Basic and Part 2 Worksite Specific) please register for the one day refresher as soon as possible.

All courses scheduled are offered following safe distancing protocols, as well as all other mandated safety protocols- this means fewer people being allowed to register for each course - allowing for safe participation.

Private on-site courses can also be arranged for groups of six (6) or more. Please contact Sheena Smith 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 Sheena Smith by email or 613.546.9814 ext. 224 for more details.

Contact Us

t:   613-546-9814
     www.whss.ca

"Specializing in incident prevention and mitigation strategies."

- Wiebke Wilkens