Ministry of Labour – April 2017 Newsletter

what’s new

April 2017
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Ontario increasing minimum wage on October 1

Ontario is continuing to boost income for workers across the province by increasing the general minimum wage for the fourth consecutive year, which will bring the wage up to $11.60 this fall. Special minimum wage rates that apply to liquor servers, students under 18, hunting and fishing guides, and homeworkers will also increase at the same time.

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2017-2018 Inspection blitzes and initiatives schedule announced

Ontario will help protect workers on the job by launching targeted blitzes and initiatives at workplaces across the province over the next year. These enforcement blitzes and initiatives will focus on violations of Ontario’s occupational health and safety and employment standards laws. Learn about upcoming ministry blitzes and initiatives in the new 2017-2018 schedule.

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Deadline extended for fall protection training requirements

The ministry has extended the deadline for workers to be trained in an approved working at heights program. Workers who had until April 1 to complete the training now have until October 1 to do so – provided they are enrolled in a program that will be completed by the new deadline.

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Occupational Health and Safety in Ontario 2015-16 Annual Report

The ministry has released its annual report on the state of workplace health and safety in Ontario. It discusses accomplishments in the past year, such as initiatives and legislative changes, and provides a preview of what’s ahead.

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Mental Health Week: May 1-7

The first week of May is Mental Health Week! Everyone should recognize mental health as key to a healthy workplace. Visit the ministry’s webpage on mental health in the workplace to see how you can make your workplace more psychologically healthy.

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Blitz results: Electrical hazards

Workers are at serious risk if they make contact with energized equipment or a conductor. The main hazard to workers working on or near energized electrical equipment is electric shock or arc flash burn. In November and December 2016, ministry inspectors conducted an enforcement blitz at construction sites across Ontario focusing on such hazards and those that could lead to musculoskeletal disorders during electrical work.

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International Noise Awareness Day: April 26

Protect your hearing! Did you know that noise-induced hearing loss is one of the most common occupational diseases, and also one of the most preventable? Next Wednesday marks International Noise Awareness Day, and it’s a great time to take steps to protect your hearing.

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Occupational Health and Safety Enforcement Annual Report

Safe At Work Ontario is a strategy aimed at raising awareness about and increasing compliance with the Occupational Health and Safety Act and its regulations. The ministry has released its Safe At Work Ontario annual report to summarize the proactive activities conducted by its inspectors in 2015-2016.

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Elevating work platforms in the live performance industry

Do you work in the live performance industry? The ministry has created new safety guidelines for work conducted on an elevating work platform (EWP) at industrial establishments or construction projects in the live performance industry. The guideline includes best practices, procedures and information on EWPs for live performance workplaces.

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National Day of Mourning: April 28

On April 28, we remember and honour those who have lost their lives or were injured as a result of workplace tragedy.

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North American Occupational Safety and Health Week

In early May, many across the country will celebrate North American Occupational Safety and Health Week. Its aim is to focus the attention of workplaces and the public on the importance of preventing injury and illness in the workplace, at home and in the community. Learn how you can get involved!

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