Why is this day so important?
Recent statistics from the Association of Workers’ Compensation Boards of Canada (AWCBC) show that in 2015, 852 workplace deaths were recorded throughout the country. Although this number is a significant decrease from the 919 and 902 fatalities recorded in 2014 and 2013 respectively, this statistic still represents a harrowing 2.3 deaths every day. This number, added to the 232,629 accepted “lost time” claims by the various provincial compensation boards indicate there is room for significant improvement when it comes to health and safety in the workplace.
In fact, according to the Ministry of Labour, the total number of Traumatic Fatalities in Ontario (both recorded by WSIB and the Ministry of Labour) totaled 72 in 2015, which although is also a substantial improvement compared to 2014 (81) and 2013 (102), these statistics do not take into account the number of fatalities related to occupational disease, nor critical injuries.
What’s being done?
The Ministry of Labour is currently investing into strategic research to address the following: the improvement of health and safety in Ontario workplaces, enhancing the delivery of effective occupational health and safety services and products, as well as strengthening the occupational health and safety system in Ontario. According to the Ministry of Labour, key priority areas for 2016-2017:
As the above statistics indicate, this information is valuable to both employers and workers alike as what the numbers do not show is just how many people are directly, and indirectly affected by workplace tragedies.
The National Day of Mourning recognizes family, friends, co-workers and loved ones who have been affected by these workplace calamities. Maintaining a "culture of safety" at your business is critical for protecting the well-being of your employees and for creating a productive, effective working environment. Let's work together so that everyone gets a chance to go home.
If you have questions about your company's Health & Safety program or would like to speak to an expert, please don't hesitate to contact Anna Aceto-Guerin at firstname.lastname@example.org or (519) 624-0800.
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