Ontario’s Workplace Safety and Insurance Board (WSIB) is an Agency of the Government of Ontario responsible for the administration of the Workplace Safety and Insurance Act (WSIA)and its regulations.
It provides income replacement, health care, medical rehabilitation, disability pensions, return to work and labour market re-entry services to workers in certain industries identified in the Act who become injured while at work or sick due to workplace causes. It also provides death benefits to surviving dependents of workers who are killed in the course of their work.
Workplace safety is a universal responsibility shared equally by workers and employers and COCA and its members are committed partners with the Ministry of Labour and the WSIB.
COCA’s influence can also be seen in the WSIB’s new Rate Framework. The new classification system, prospective experience rating program and employer-centric rate setting process will balance rate responsiveness and collective liability.
COCA pressed the WSIB to make some accommodation for non-exempt construction executive officers in the new Rate Framework and the provincial compensation agency has agreed in principle with our request. COCA’s WSIB and OHS Committee considered the WSIB’s 2018 draft policies in support of the new Rate Framework. The WSIB convened several meetings to address and refine the draft policies. The Office of the Employer Adviser made two comprehensive submissions that addressed the ambiguous and open-ended nature of some of the policies and the unfairness of others. COCA endorsed the submissions which had been made by the Office of the Employer Adviser. The policies were eventually finalized with significant improvements in line with those submissions.
COCA was involved in discussions with senior officials at the WSIB in the development of the WSIB’s Health & Safety Excellence Program (HSEP). On November 22, 2019, Minister McNaughton announced the launch of WSIB’s Health and Safety Excellence Program (HSEP), which replaces the safety Groups Program, Workwell and SCIP.
The HSEP is made up of 36 training modules divided into three sections, foundations for a health and safety management system with ten modules, building a health and safety management systems 17 modules and integrate and optimize a health and safety management system nine modules. There are significant financial rewards for employers along this 36-module journey.