Advisory Circulars

Commercial & Business Aviation

OVERVIEW OF THE AMENDMENTS TO
PART II OF THE CANADA LABOUR CODE

Subject:  3. Duties of Employers (sections 124 and 125)

AMENDED CODE EXPLANATION/APPLICATION
124. Every employer shall ensure that the health and safety at work of every person employed by the employer is protected.  
125.(1) Without restricting the generality of section 124, every employer shall, in respect of every work place controlled by the employer and, in respect of every work activity carried out by an employee in a work place that is not controlled by the employer, to the extent that the employer controls the activity,. Employers have many additional duties that will impact on the manner in which occupational health and safety programs will be administered. Besides being responsible for the health and safety of employees in the work place, they are also responsible for making sure every work activity in a work place that is not controlled by the employer is conducted in a safe and healthy manner.
125.(1)(e) make readily available to employees for examination, in printed or electronic form, a copy of the regulations made under this Part that apply to the work place. Regulations may be provided to employees in electronic form.
125.(1)(f) if a copy of the regulations is made available in electronic form, provide appropriate training to employees to enable them to have access to the regulations and, on the request of an employee, make a printed copy of the regulations available. If regulations are provided in electronic form, employees must be trained on how to use the medium for accessing the regulations.
125.(1)(u) ensure that the work place, work spaces and procedures meet prescribed ergonomic standards. This new requirement will come into effect once regulations have been developed. However, it does not preclude the responsibility of the employer to ensure a healthy and safe work place.
125.(1)(x) comply with every oral or written direction given to the employer by an appeals officer or a health and safety officer concerning the health and safety of employees. Directions may be issued by an appeals officer under specific circumstances and employers must comply with them as with any direction issued by a health and safety officer.
125.(1)(y) ensure that the activities of every person granted access to the work place do not endanger the health and safety of employees. This clause requires employers to take the necessary steps to ensure that actions of visitors or federal and provincial contractors do not endanger the health and safety of employees.
125.(1)(z) ensure that employees who have supervisory or managerial responsibilities are adequately trained in health and safety and are informed of the responsibilities they have under this Part where they act on behalf of their employer. Employers must ensure that supervisors and managers are trained in health and safety matters and that they are aware of their role when acting on behalf of their employer.
125.(1)(z.01) ensure that members of policy and work place committees and health and safety representatives receive the prescribed training in health and safety and are informed of their responsibilities under this Part. When regulations come into effect, committee members and health and safety representatives as in the case of supervisors and managers, will also receive training in health and safety matters and be aware of their role as committee members or representatives.
125.(1)(z.02) respond as soon as possible to reports made by employees under paragraph 126.(1)(g). Employers must respond in a reasonable time frame to reports of hazardous circumstances made by employees.
125.(1)(z.03) develop, implement and monitor, in consultation with the policy committee or, if there is no policy committee, with the work place committee or the health and safety representative, a prescribed program for the prevention of hazards in the work place appropriate to its size and the nature of the hazards in it that also provides for the education of employees in health and safety maters. Employers are required to put in place a program, to be developed by regulations, for the prevention of hazards in the work place and these programs must be developed, implemented and monitored in consultation with the policy committee or the health and safety committee when there is no policy committee. The size and nature of the work place will determine the type of prevention program needed. For work places not under an employer's control, the prevention program will address activities only to the extent that they are within the employer's control.
125.(1)(z.04) where the program referred to in subparagraph (z.03) does not cover certain hazards unique to a work place, develop, implement and monitor, in consultation with the work place committee or the health and safety representative, a prescribed program for the prevention of those hazards that also provides for the education of employees in health and safety matters related to those hazards. This is a requirement for putting in place an additional prevention and education program for unique hazards in a work place.
125.(1)(z.05) consult the policy committee or, if there is no policy committee, the work place committee or the health and safety representative to plan the implementation of changes that may affect occupational health and safety, including work processes and procedures. In planning the implementation of changes affecting occupational health and safety, including work processes and procedures, consultation must take place at the corporate level.
125.(1)(z.06) consult the work place committee or the health and safety representative in the implementation of changes that may affect occupational health and safety, including work processes and procedures. This clause further requires that consultation has taken place at the employee level on the implementation of changes affecting occupational health and safety, including work processes and procedures.
125.(1)(z.07) ensure the availability in the work place of premises, equipment and personnel for the operation of the policy and work place committees. This clause requires that committees are provided the necessary resources to function efficiently.
125.(1)(z.08) cooperate with the policy and work place committees or the health and safety representative in the execution of their duties under this Part. This paragraph calls for the willingness of the employer to work in cooperation with committees and/or representatives.
125.(1)(z.09) develop health and safety policies and programs in consultation with the policy committee or, if there is no policy committee, with the work place committee or the health and safety representative. The intent of this clause is to ensure the participation of policy committees in the development of occupational health and safety policies and programs. In the event that there is no policy committee, employers are to consult with the work place committees or the health and safety representatives. Policy committees generally deal with policies and programs that affect the whole enterprise and/or its various work places.
125.(1)(z.10) respond in writing to recommendations made by policy and work place committees or the health and safety representative within thirty days after receiving them, indicating what, if any, action will be taken and when it will be taken. The purpose of this requirement is to strengthen the internal responsibility system by encouraging dialogue between both parties until health and safety issues are resolved.
125.(1)(z.11) provide to the policy committee, and to the work place committee or the health and safety representative, a copy of any report on hazards in the work place, including an assessment of those hazards. The intent of this clause is to ensure that the employees are well informed of all hazards in the work place through their committees or representatives.
125.(1)(z.12) ensure that the work place committee or the health and safety representative inspects each month all or part of the work place, so that every part of the work place is inspected at least once each year. The intent of this clause is to ensure that regular inspections of work places are performed. However, some work places are so large that it would be unreasonable to expect complete monthly inspections. It is left to the employer and the work place committee or the health and safety representative to establish their own monthly inspection schedule so that the entire work place is inspected annually.
125.(1)(z.13) when necessary, develop, implement and monitor a program for the provision of personal protective equipment, clothing, devices or materials, in consultation, except in emergencies, with the policy committee or, if there is no policy committee, with the work place committee or the health and safety representative. Where work activities require the use of personal protective equipment such as gloves, a smoke hood, etc. employers must consult the policy committee, if one exists, to develop, implement and monitor a program that will address the requirements of the work place.
125.(1)(z.14) take all reasonable care to ensure that all persons granted access to the work place, other than the employer's employees, are informed of every known or foreseeable health and safety hazard to which they are likely to be exposed in the work place. This provision ensures that every person who enters the work place is informed of existing or potential hazards.
125.(1)(z.15) meet with the health and safety representative as necessary to address health and safety matters. This provision reiterates that the employer must keep in communication with the health and safety representatives, when required, in companies where there are no policy or work place committees.
125.(1)(z.16) take the prescribed steps to prevent and protect against violence in the work place. This requirement provides authority to make regulations to take the necessary action for ensuring that employees are protected from violence in the work place.
125.(1)(z.17) post and keep posted, in a conspicuous place or places where they are likely to come to the attention of employees, the names, work place telephone numbers and work locations of all of the members of work place committees or of the health and safety representative. This provision ensures that employees may easily contact a member of the work place committee or the health and safety representative. The employer is exempted from this paragraph if they control (a) a single work place where less than 20 employees are normally employed and all those employees and the H&S representative normally work at the same time and in the same location; or (b) a single work place where only one employee is normally employed.
125.(1)(z.18) provide, within thirty days after receiving a request or as soon as possible after that, the information requested from the employer by a policy committee.by a work place committee...or by a health and safety representative... This provision requires that all matters related to occupational health and safety are dealt with expeditiously.
125.(1)(z.19) consult with the work place committee or the health and safety representative on the implementation and monitoring of programs developed in consultation with the policy committee. Employers must involve, at a local level, work place committees or health and safety representatives in the implementation of programs that are developed in consultation with the policy committee.
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