Does your business in Ontario have 20 or more regular employees? If so, the Occupational Health and Safety Act mandates that your workplace have a Joint Health and Safety Committee (JHSC). Additionally, at least two of the members of that committee must attend a JHSC training class and receive health and safety certification.
A JHSC is a group composed of employee and employer representatives that works to improve health and safety conditions in the workplace. The group’s focus will depend on the specific hazards that exist within your workplace. With few exceptions, all workplaces that regularly employ 20 or more workers must have a JHSC, including offices and other workplaces that do not involve heavy equipment or physically-demanding work.
Scheduling a JHSC training class for your employees is simple; we’ll outline the process briefly in the steps below.
Scheduling a JHSC Training Class for Your Employees
- Determine whether you want to host the class in your workplace or have the representatives attend classes off-site. This decision will depend on the number of people who will take the course. If your workplace only requires a small number of certified members, it is typically more affordable to have those few people travel to an off-site classroom for the duration of their training. For larger groups, it may be more convenient and affordable for the training provider to attend your workplace. Check the Ministry of Labour’s resources to find out how many of your JHSC members will need to get certified.
- Decide which JHSC members should receive training and certification. Some employers, particularly those in workplaces with many hazards, choose to have more than the minimum number of people certified. JHSC training can be beneficial to everyone in the workplace, not just committee members, if the employer can budget for it. In any case, you will need to decide who will attend the training before you schedule it.
- Find out the schedule for JHSC training classes in your area. Once you have found an approved JHSC training provider in your area, call them or visit their website to find out the schedule for JHSC training classes. Some providers run classes over the course of several concurrent days, while others offer classes spread out throughout several weeks. The preferred option will depend on the cadence of your workplace. Is it better to have those workers missing for a few days in a row, or several days throughout the month?
- Book your training sessions. Be sure the times chosen do not conflict with the attending workers’ days off – JHSC training counts as time on the job.
For more information, the Ontario Ministry of Labour has published a complete guide for health and safety committees and representatives.