OHNIG Executive Member Louise Caicco Tett writes Summary
Expert Advisory Panel on Occupational Health and Safety: The Tony Dean Report
In December of 2010, a panel of nine experts, chaired by Tony Dean, released a report entitled, “Expert Advisory Panel on Occupational Health and Safety”. It was the result of a year-long review of Ontario's Occupational Health and Safety (OHS) Prevention and Enforcement system. The report was prepared for the Honourable Peter Fonesca, Minister of Labour, and includes 45 recommendations.
The Expert Panel recommends that the Ministry of Labour (MOL) should assume responsibility for the co-ordination of prevention program delivery, which is currently the responsibility of the WSIB and other partners. It further recommends that a Chief Prevention Officer, reporting to the MOL, should be appointed. His/her job will be to coordinate and align prevention system strategies, priorities and programs, and oversee Ontario's Health and Safety Associations.
If the report is fully implement, there will be many changes for Ontario businesses, supervisors, and workers. Some of the most significant changes to strengthen the safety culture within businesses would include mandatory OHS training for:
The needs of small business have been specifically recognized in this report. To that end, the expert panel recommended that the Ministry of Labour create a small business committee made up of members to represent the needs and interests of employers and workers in the small business sector.
It is recognized that workplaces that focus on health and wellness in their businesses have improved productivity, quality, and profitability. To support this, the expert panel recommended an accreditation program for employers who implement safety management systems.
The Tony Dean report recognized that there are many vulnerable workers in Ontario; new workers, youth, recent immigrants, and foreign temporary workers. There are recommendations to support this group of vulnerable workers and to expedite complaints of reprisals against such workers, and improve protection for them.
It will take changes to legislation to enact many of the recommendations put forth in the Tony Dean report. In the meantime, you can ask yourself the following questions. If you answer no to any of the questions, you can rectify the situation in an effort to be prepared when the changes do take place.
To read the full report “Expert Advisory Panel on Occupational Health and Safety: The Tony Dean Report” ... click here
Louise Caicco Tett