CCOHS Backgrounder

The Canadian Centre for Occupational Health and Safety (CCOHS) is Canada's national resource for the advancement of workplace health and safety. The Centre promotes the total well-being – physical, psychosocial, and mental health – of working people in Canada by providing information, education, tools, and solutions that encourage attitudes and methods that will lead to improved worker physical and mental health, and prevention of work-related injury and illness.

CCOHS was established in 1978 by the Canadian Centre for Occupational Health and Safety Act, which was passed by unanimous vote in the Canadian Parliament. The purpose of the Act is to promote the right of workers in Canada to a healthy and safe working environment by creating a national institute concerned with the study, encouragement and cooperative advancement of occupational health and safety, in whose governing body the interests and concerns of workers, trade unions, employers, federal, provincial and territorial authorities, professional and scientific communities and the general public will be represented.

CCOHS is a federal departmental corporation reporting to the Parliament of Canada through the federal Minister of Labour, and is governed by a Council of Governors representing governments (federal, provincial and territorial), employers, and workers; a structure that ensures an impartial approach.

CCOHS promotes health and safety in the workplace by:

  • facilitating consultation and cooperation among federal, provincial and territorial jurisdictions, and participation by labour and management;
  • assisting in the development and maintenance of policies and programs;
  • serving as a national Centre for information relating to occupational health and safety.

CCOHS makes a wide range of occupational health and safety information as well as training and educational courses readily available. CCOHS partners and collaborates with agencies and organizations from Canada and around the world to improve the quality and quantity of its resources and programs, as well as expand the breadth of usage of occupational health and safety information to many different segments of society. CCOHS is a Collaborating Centre of the World Health Organization for occupational health and safety, and is renowned as a credible and authoritative occupational health and safety resource.

More information about CCOHS can be found at