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Most-viewed articles this week on HRinfodesk

Connecting to co-workers and employer on social media Our last HRinfodesk poll asked readers if they connect with their boss or any of their co-workers on any social media platform. According to poll results, the majority said they don’t or never will. New mandatory health and safety workplace poster Under the Ontario Occupational Health and […]


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Workplace violence and privacy: what’s the connection?

So here’s a question to ask yourself—what are your legal obligations under Ontario law when you see an online photo of your worker committing violent acts?


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Conflicting views on engagement?

There are a lot of factors to employee engagement. Some employees need recognition, in the form of pay, benefits, seniority or favour. Others need to feel that they are part of the company and have a stake in its success. Still others need to feel a connection to their work; it must be creative and challenging. Most workers probably need some balance of all these factors. I know I wouldn’t last long in a dull and repetitive environment. But I also would feel unappreciated if I weren’t remunerated appropriately.


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Disturbing death of an underage worker – hearing begins October 2010

A recent article described the tragic death of a boy who was 15 years old and working as a paver for a company near Winnipeg. The company truck was dumping asphalt into a massive pile to use for various projects. The underage worker was helping unload the truck when he was hit by the entire load and buried alive under burning asphalt.


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Fifth worker involved in scaffolding incident sues for damages

Last week, I wrote about the incident in which five migrant workers fell 13 storeys when a platform collapsed on Christmas Eve, 2009. Four died instantly, but one survived. This fifth worker, who suffered grave injuries, has now launched a civil suit for damages.


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Multi-tasking: where do you draw the line?

Multi-tasking is so serious that workers are taking their work into the washroom, with disturbing results. According to a recent survey, one-third of Brits admit they’ve made a “stall-call”—that is, a call from the toilet, not just the restroom—whether for business or pleasure. And one in twenty said they’ve taken their laptop with them when nature called. The survey also found a significant—and disgusting—number of people eat, drink and brush their teeth while answering nature’s call.


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Scaffolding accident involving migrant workers: charges with fines of up to $17,000,000

The Ministry of Labour just laid charges carrying fines of up to $17,000,000 against two companies that ran and supplied a platform that collapsed last year. There were also charges against executives and supervisors that could carry fines and time in jail.


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Can I wear my flip-flops to the worksite?

Self-employment runs in my family. My sister’s 17-year-old is spending her summer days working in the family cabinet-making business. She reluctantly changed into more suitable footwear before heading out the door this morning.


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The health and workplace benefits of team sports

Team activities, whether organized or informal, offer numerous health benefits—both physical and mental—they can be a perfect fit for enhancing workplace wellness.


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The ‘Ministry’ will investigate complaints of harassment… Really??!!

As a human rights advisor and educator I was encouraged to overhear this educational conversation about harassment at Tim Hortons. I was concerned however that part of the message this group was hearing was incorrect and misleading.


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All this hot, humid and smoggy air outside… but what about indoor air quality?

The last few days have been quite hot and muggy. Those without air conditioning at home are especially grateful that they can retreat inside their air-conditioned workplaces for at least most of the day; but what is the air quality inside these areas?


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Workplace wellness programs: what are they all about?

Typically, wellness means “the condition of good physical and mental health”, but what is a “workplace wellness program”? What are the advantages of having this kind of program, and how does an employer start one up?


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Happy Canada Day everyone! And look out for all the laws coming into force today

First, we at First Reference would like to wish everybody a happy and safe Canada Day! Second, several laws in various jurisdictions are coming into force today. They are…


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Do vacations stress you out? (Part two)

So it’s practically summer and I can’t help thinking of the days off I’ll be taking here and there, the chunk of vacation time I still have left and the various long weekends remaining. (But I don’t let my daydreams affect my work!) I might not have a lot of vacation days left, but I’m sure going to use them.


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Can employers prevent workplace suicide?

I was recently reading an issue of SafetyNewsAlert, which indicated that there were over 20 attempted suicides over one year in a single Chinese technology factory—one that manufactures products for Apple, including the iPad, among other things. Out of the 20 attempts, 9 suicides were successful within a period of five months. According to the article, questions are being raised about the sustainability of China’s manufacturing model, which relies on long hours from its workers. Typical workweeks include seven days of twelve hours.


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