Legislation watch: 3 bills that may affect you

Legislation watch: 3 bills that may affect you
NOTO wishes to thank Workplace Safety & Prevention Services for their contribution to our September 2018 newsletter. Thank you for helping to keep our members informed.

Workplace Safety & Prevention Services LogoWSPS is tracking the progress of new legislation to ensure you get the latest information before new rules are enacted. Three bills stand out. 
Set to take effect on October 17, 2018 Bill C-45 legalizes the recreational use of marijuana. This could have a dramatic impact on health and safety in your workplace. “We’re also keeping an eye on Bill C-65, the federal Harassment and Violence Act, a ground breaking bill that will have implications for federal workplaces,” says Jaskaren Randhawa, WSPS’ Research Program Coordinator, “as well as Schedule 5 of Ontario Bill 18, which switches responsibility for the costs of injuries to temp workers to the employer.”
Bill C-45 Cannabis laws, federal and provincial: in force October 17, 2018
An amendment to the Smoke-Free Ontario Act, 2017 (Bill 174,) prohibits the smoking and ingestion of cannabis in workplaces. This amendment aligns the province with the federal.
Bill 174 requires employers to post signs and notify employees of the act. It also amends the Ontario Highway Traffic Act to prohibit the smoking of cannabis in company vehicles (inside and outside the workplace). This prohibition applies to everyone including employees who have been prescribed medical marijuana.
If you haven’t already done so, review both the federal and provincial legislation, update your hazard assessments to include the potential for impairment, and create new policies and programs around substance abuse in the workplace
Bill C-65: now in consultation after passing third reading
Before the federal government enacts this bill on workplace harassment and violence, it is consulting Canadians on the proposed framework. The bill aims to strengthen the law by proposing, among other things, that workplace programs and policies include measures to prevent sexual harassment and violence, and recognize the impact of psychological injuries and illness arising from violence and harassment.
The consultation ends October 5, and the bill is expected to become law in fall 2019.
Schedule 5 of Bill 18
Proclaimed on April 6, 2018 this bill attributes temporary workers’ injury and accident costs – which are currently paid by temporary help agencies – to employers. This could lead to higher or lower WSIB premiums for employers. The bill is not yet in force.
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