Newfoundland Labrador Update OHSR Workplace Violence Regulations
The Newfoundland Labrador government has made a major overhaul of the province's Occupational Health and Safety Regulations (OHSR) under the Occupational Health and Safety Act (O.C. 2009-233). Regulation 70/09 contains new sections on injury prevention and also updates existing regulations to reflect industry safety practices. The regulations also more clearly address the prevention of workplace violence.
The regulations were effective September 1, 2009 and came into full force January 1, 2010.
Workplace Violence Defined
OHSR defines workplace violence as “the attempted or actual exercise by a person, other than a worker, of physical force to cause injury to a worker, and includes threatening statements or behaviour which gives a worker reason to believe that he or she is at a risk of injury.”
Policies and Procedures Required
New requirements indicate employers to conduct a risk assessment for violence prevention, establish procedures to control the risk, and communicate those procedures to workers.
Where a risk of injury to workers from violence is identified by an assessment performed, the employer shall:
- Establish procedures, policies and work environment arrangements to eliminate the risk to workers from violence.
- Where elimination of the risk to workers is not possible, establish procedures, policies and work environment arrangements to minimize the risk to workers.
- Inform workers who may be exposed to the risk of violence of the nature of the risk and the precautions that may be taken.
The duty to inform workers includes a duty to provide information related to the risk of violence from persons with a history of violent behaviour and who they are likely to encounter in the course of their work.
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