Article

Ontario companies found responsible for workplace fatalities won’t get safety rebate

0 66 OH&S

by Journal Of Commerce

Effective immediately, if a company is responsible for a workplace fatality, it will not be eligible for a rebate from the Workplace Safety and Insurance Board (WSIB).

Occupational Health and Safety

Effective immediately, if a company is responsible for a workplace fatality, it will not be eligible for a rebate from the Workplace Safety and Insurance Board (WSIB).

“It is unacceptable to me that a company responsible for a fatality would still get a rebate cheque from the WSIB,” said Steven Mahoney, chair of the WSIB.

“Our five-year strategic plan is the Road to Zero, and that is the only acceptable number of fatalities.”

Experience rating is a cost-based incentive program intended to promote good health and safety practices, early and safe return to work and appropriate disability management practices.

In this program, employers receive rebates or surcharges according to their performance based on claims costs.

Under certain circumstances, it is possible for a company to have a traumatic workplace fatality and still receive a rebate from the Experience Rating program.

This is because Experience Rating is a cost-based program and some fatalities do not result in high costs; for instance, if a worker did not have dependents.

Mahoney also called for a review of Experience Rating to find other areas of improvement and better align the program to the Road to Zero. The review will make recommendations to modernize and strengthen the program, in areas such as: accounting for legislative non-compliance, creating a process to validate workplace health and safety performance, and a long-term plan to directly tie all incentive programs to proactive health and safety initiatives.

“The Experience Rating program should raise the bar by rewarding excellent results in health and safety, prevention and return to work,” said Mahoney.

“The program has been effective in getting the results we need, but I know more can be done with Experience Rating to improve health and safety for the workers and employers of Ontario. We are strengthening this program so that it is fairer, better leverages our partners in prevention, provides direct incentives to improve health and safety, and gets us to our goal of zero injuries, illnesses and fatalities.”

JOC News Service

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