Government of Canada
Canadian Centre for Occupational Health and Safety


Liaison: the latest news from CCOHS

Liaison: the latest news from CCOHS
January 2015 | Fran├žais

Your Feedback Wanted

Here's your chance to shape the future of Liaison to make it more useful for you. What features would you like to see in upcoming issues? What do you like? What do you not like?

Send us your feedback by February 13, and you could win a $100 gift card from Chapters Indigo. Your opinion is important to us.

Take the short survey

Infographic: Distracted Driving

How to keep your focus on the road

For many drivers, operating a car or truck may seem second nature, whether it's for personal or work use. However, no matter what the level of experience or comfort, driving requires your full attention.

With the popularity of cell phones, texting, talking and e-mailing on the go are increasingly becoming factors in collisions. Our latest infographic highlights why it is important to minimize distractions, and shares helpful tips for both drivers and employers to keep the focus squarely on the road.

View the Distracted Driving infographic

View more health and safety infographics

Read our fact sheet on distracted driving

Like our infographics? We encourage you to share via your online social networks and e-mail. CCOHS also develops postersideal for printing and display, based on the guidance offered in our infographics.

Distracted Driving collage

Select the image to view it at full-size.

Take Action on Workplace Violence and Harassment

Understand your responsibilities under the law

CCOHS key topic webpage on Workplace Violence

Workplace violence is a much broader issue than just physical acts towards another person. It can also include threats, physical intimidation, bullying, harassment, throwing objects, malicious gossip, property destruction, and many other harmful behaviours.

Workplace violence and harassment can affect the safety and security of every employee and lead to decreased morale, higher absenteeism, loss of productivity, and higher insurance and workers' compensation premiums. Several Canadian jurisdictions have specific prevention regulations in place, including British Columbia, Manitoba, Ontario and Nova Scotia, along with federally regulated workplaces. Having a workplace violence prevention program in place is the best way to reduce the risks because it takes a very structured, well-thought-out approach. The best policies are developed with the involvement of all key stakeholders, including management employees, and clients.

Protect your workers with resources and tools from CCOHS that can help you:

Purchase any one of our featured products by March 25, 2015, and use promotion code: Noviolence to be entered into a draw to win a Bose SoundLink Mini Bluetooth Speaker (valued at $220).

For additional resources and tools to help you fulfill your legal obligation and responsibility to prevent violence and harassment in your workplace, visit our key topic pageor our Pinterest board on workplace violence.

The New CCOHS website

Coming in February

CCOHS new website is coming in February

OSH Wise a Vessel for Health and Safety Management

How the Hamilton Port Authority improved its health and safety program

The Port of Hamilton handles annual volumes in excess of 12 million metric tonnes, ranking it among Canada's overall top ten ports. Every year approximately 700 vessels carrying cargoes ranging from coal and iron ore, salt and sand, grains, and jet fuel berth among its dockwall. Throughout the port, engineers and technologists, port security officers and electricians, real estate and marketing professionals, accountants and information technologists, and marina and environmental specialists all work to run the largest port on the Canadian Great Lakes.

Focusing on health and safety

In recent years the Hamilton Port Authority (HPA) has been working to build a comprehensive and effective health and safety program that complies with the requirements of the Canada Labour Code Part II (the Code) and provides the highest levels of protection for its workers. HPA approached CCOHS in January 2014 to help them ensure that safety procedures met the highest industry standards, and to create a health and safety management system to support ongoing maintenance and improvement. The project was undertaken in three phases to achieve a logical and informed approach to the development of the components of HPA's health and safety program.

Phase one: assessment

CCOHS conducted site visits and detailed interviews with employees to learn about their existing safety procedures, training and safety practices. The interviews revealed a high level of safety awareness and a strong dedication to establishing and maintaining good safety practices.

Next, CCOHS conducted a gap analysis to review existing safety documents to identify programs that needed to achieve compliance with requirements of the Code. A job safety analysis JSA) process was created and eight high priority jobs were identified such as snow plowing and using a hydraulic lift. Employees also completed a safety climate survey to measure safety awareness and attitudes.

Phase two: development

The job safety analyses and health and safety program documents were prepared, and the development of a management system for ongoing maintenance and reporting using CCOHS' OSH Wise online tool began. Hamilton Port Authority requirements were established, program documents were entered into the system, and the training program was formalized within OSH Wise to enable effective planning and access by managers.

Phase three: implementation and review

The health and safety program was consolidated and validated. Managers completed risk assessments to prioritize future program development, were trained on how to use OSH Wise, and continue to complete the remaining program documents. A second safety climate survey was conducted to measure safety impact, and revealed that awareness and attitudes had significantly improved. The Hamilton Port Authority plans to continue to work with CCOHS after the project to optimize their health and safety program and management system.

Learn more about OSH Wise

Workplace Violence: Let's Talk About It

Join us for a Twitter chat on February 11

CCOHS Twitter page

Save the date! Join us for a Twitter chat on workplace violence prevention with CCOHS Senior Technical Specialist, Jan Chappel, on Wednesday, February 11, from 1-2 pm EST.

Make sure to follow @CCOHS on Twitter, and use the hashtag #CCOHSchat to join in on the conversation.

More details to come soon on our Facebook page and Twitter feed.

Got Questions? We Can Help

Enter your video to win cash and kudos

In today's hyper connected world there is an almost unlimited volume of information available at our fingertips. The problem is that we do not always know what information we can trust. This issue is especially relevant to workplace safety. For workplaces to take action and implement change they must have resources that they can count on.

For more than 30 years, CCOHS has been offering a free person-to-person Inquiries Service that provides Canadians with the information that they need to work safely. The service is easy to access for workers and employers, with confidential, reliable service offered in both English and French, both online and by calling our toll-free phone number.

If you call us, you will be connected directly with a professional who will learn about and document your specific issue or concern and conduct research, including consultation with CCOHS experts and resources. You'll receive a customized, unbiased response with the best available information, knowledge, and best practices acquired from evaluated, reliable sources and translated by our specialists to meet your specific needs. We are able to assist with a wide diversity of issues. In 2014 some of the most assisted topics covered bullying and harassment, hazardous materials, ergonomics, legal requirements, best practices, human rights, workplace wellness and WHMIS after GHS.

In addition, easy-to-read fact sheets on hundreds of health and safety questions is available online for free through our OSH Answers service. Serve yourself, or contact us - either way, we're here to help.

Lights, Camera, Contest!

Enter your video to win cash and kudos

It's Your Job - Youth Video Contest 2015

Calling all Canadian high school students: enter the "It's Your Job" Youth Video Contest" to win cash and kudos! Simply create a short video that illustrates the importance of working safely on the job.

To enter the contest, be sure to visit the page for the province in which you live and follow the instructions to enter your video. Note that each province has set its own deadlines, entry rules, and submission guidelines. All provincial contest pages are listed on our national contest page.

Winners of the provincial contests will move onto the national stage, where the first place video will be awarded $2,000, second place $1,500 and third place $1,000. Plus, each winning secondary school will receive a matching prize.

Learn more about the It's Your Job Youth Video Contest

Featured e-Course: Office Ergonomics

Office Ergonomics e-course

A practical introduction to office ergonomics, focusing on problems and injuries related to the use of computers and other office equipment, the goal of this e-course is to provide you with the knowledge to help find solutions to ergonomic issues in your workplace.

See all e-courses from CCOHS

What's Popular

Musculoskeletal Disorders (MSD) Prevention Manual

This manual helps employers and workers identify and control the sources of MSDs in their workplaces, provides techniques to help eliminate injuries, and offers guidelines for the development of a workplace MSD program.

WHMIS (After GHS) for Workers

Learn about WHMIS after its alignment with GHS, an internationally consistent approach to classifying chemicals and communicating hazard information through labels and safety data sheets (SDSs). This e-course is free for individuals.

Three Basic Rights of Canadian Workers

Canadian occupational health and safety legislation gives three important rights to all workers. These rights are: the right to know; the right to participate; and the right to refuse unsafe work. Display this poster throughout your workplace so your employees are aware of their health and safety rights.


Last Call: Apply for the Dick Martin Scholarship Award

It's not too late to enter. The Dick Martin Scholarship is a national award open to students enrolled in an occupational health and safety course or program in an accredited college or university in Canada, leading to an occupational health and safety certificate, diploma or degree.

To apply for the $3000 award, students need to submit a 1000 -1200 word essay on one of two topics related to workplace health and safety. Essays will be judged on the intellectual content, the practical and theoretical value, and the presentation and style.

The deadline for entries is January 31, 2015.


Listen and Learn

Every month, we release new podcasts on current and emerging health and safety topics. Simply download these episodes to your computer or MP3 player and listen to them at your own convenience.

Winter Driving Tips

Winter weather conditions can pose unique challenges and safety risks for Canadian drivers. We offer some tips to ensure driver safety.

Preventing Musculoskeletal Injuries

International Strain Injury (RSI) Awareness Day is February 28. We take a quick look at work-related musculoskeletal injuries and how to prevent them.