Nearly one year ago, the Ontario government enacted Bill 168, which added workplace violence and harassment provisions to the Occupational Health and Safety Act (OHSA). Many employers were ready, but many are still scrambling to comply, which, among other things, includes developing written policies to address both violence and harassment at work and to review those policies at least once a year.
In addition, employers are required to conduct training on these policies to meet their due diligence.
At a recent HRPA panel discussion in Halton, Scott Hanville from the Ontario Ministry of Labour (MOL) shared the following details regarding compliance with the workplace violence and harassment provisions under the OHSA:
- When the MOL inspections started, they found non-compliance with all parts of Part III.0.1 (violence and harassment) across all sectors and in both large and small workplaces. Some workplaces had policies and programs in place already for workplace harassment and workplace violence but needed to review and update them to comply with section 32.0.1 of Part III.0.1.
- Eighty percent of large workplaces and 20 percent of small workplaces were in compliance. The most common non-compliance order issued by the MOL involved risk assessments and training.
You can learn more about what’s happened since Bill 168 came into force, and obtain practical tips to get you in compliance if you are struggling with the issues. You know what they say: it’s never too late to become compliant; so don’t wait for an incident of violence and harassment to occur in your workplace to be forced to react, or to face a fine for violating the law. At the 2011 Ontario Employment Law Conference, the session on Bill 168 – A year in review will provide you with:
- The essential elements of a good violence and harassment policy
- Tips for conducting your mandatory annual review
- How to effectively respond to and investigate incidents and complaints
- Recent jurisprudence in the courts, arbitrations and at the Ontario Labour Relations Board
We invite business owners and managers who are grappling with workplace and employment law issues in the province of Ontario to attend the conference. Register for the 2011 Employment Law Conference—and Learn the latest! (Registrations now closed)
First Reference Human Resources and Compliance Managing Editor