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2021 Speakers

December 15, 2021

By 2021 Speakers

Julia Lok of the Ontario Workplace Safety & Prevention Services made a presentation “COVID Best Practices at the Workplace”. Julia went over the legal requirements related to COVID including the Occupational Health & Safety Act, Reopening Ontario Act, Regulation 364/20, Employment Standards Act and local health orders and measures.

A COVID-19 safety plan includes screening, physical distancing, limiting capacity, cleaning & disinfection, PPE and face coverings. Safety plan best practices include:

Best practices for screening include:

  • Screening all workers & non-workers before they enter including a questionnaire, RAT and self-monitoring tool.
  • Screening visitors before arrival and on-site.
  • Maintaining attendance records.

Risks can be controlled by limiting capacity in any congregating areas, utilizing outdoor spaces, using surgical & procedure masks, and using the ventilation checklist ( and ventilation calculation tools (

Where there is a potential exposure you need to determine the contacts using cohorts & attendance information under Public Health guidance, communicate the exposure and have response procedures and return to work programs in place.

To manage risks you must regularly identify, access, recommend controls and evaluate hazards and potential harassment, threats & violence to workers and factors contributing to negative mental health.

To evaluate if your COVID safety plan is working you should have scheduled reviews, worker feedback, involve the health & safety representative and committee, and conduct monthly inspections.

WSPS COVID-19 Resources are available at ( and on the WSPS website (

Rob Read of Environment Canada made a presentation on “Public Notifications under the E2 Regulations”.

Rob Read began the presentation on companies that E2 Regulation apply to having a substance on the list over prescribed limits. The responsible person for E2 should have detailed info including a description of measures. To communicate to the potentially impact areas of the potential consequences and the measures taken if an environmental emergency occurs. The presentation focused on the requirements under E2 Regulations for public notification.

Notification is required for the possibility and potential consequences of an environmental emergency, a description of the measures taken to protect life, health and the environment and the measures to communicate with the public during and after an emergency.

Before an emergency, the public that may be impacted outside of the facility by an emergency should be notified of potential emergencies, consequences and measures that will be taken if there is an emergency. Notification could include door to door, phone calls, email, town hall meetings and mailing pamphlets, etc. ECCC doesn’t prescribe how notifications are done. Examples of notifications prior to an emergency were shown including a Superior Propane notification letter and a Nestle plant notification in a newsletter. Rob said that notifications during and after an environmental emergency should include the measures taken and actions to reduce harm. He mentioned a text alert from Nuclear.

September 23, 2021

By 2021 Speakers

Edy Haddad and Brian Mabee of Peninsula Canada made a presentation called “Your Roadmap for Vaccines and COVID-19 in the Workplace”. They talked about what to do if staff refuse the vaccine. You need to educate staff, talk to staff about the vaccine and have a clear policy on vaccinations. Companies need to treat vaccination information like medical records. To keep your workplace safe & compliant you need to track staff vaccination status to help with recalling staff & keeping employees safe.

To reopen your workplace you must assess the workplace capacity for safety and ensure the compliance your health & safety policies for social distancing, disinfection and masking, etc. You need to review your existing COVID procedures, their effectiveness, staff compliance, staff & visitor screening and legislative changes. You should develop policies to recall staff considering phasing recalls, criteria to base recalls on such as seniority or order of layoff, etc. and recall notices. Employment contracts and handbooks should be updated incorporating legislative changes, human rights concerns, addressing vaccination policies and clarifying responsibilities and expectations.

Addressing vaccination in policies and contracts helps to: mitigate risk; clarify expectations; resolve disputes; outline responsibilities; makes training & enforcement easier; and protects from compliance violations.

Penalties for violating ESA and OHS are: financial; legal costs even when winning; cost of wasted management time; poor employee relations & morale; adverse publicity; and reporting to other agencies such as Canada Revenue Agency.


March 10, 2021

By 2021 Speakers

Lisa Bolton of Sherrard Kuzz LLP made a presentation on COVID-19 Vaccination and the Workplace. The presentation was on screening customers/visitors for vaccinations; mandatory employee vaccinations; and compliance with current health & safety requirements to address COVID-19.

When considering if businesses should require proof of vaccinations, they need to weigh the objectives of protecting health & safety & minimizing potential liability under the Occupiers’ Liability Act and Bill 218; vs. the risks of Human Rights Code or privacy complaints/violations. She suggested not to implement vaccination screening for customers/visitors unless the benefit outweighs the risk. If implementing vaccination screening develop a policy you will need to identify why screening is a reasonable business requirement and confirm accommodation will be provided to those who cannot comply for a human rights-related reason. If collecting personal information follow Personal Information Protection and Electronic Documents Act including identifying how information will be used, securely stored, safely destroyed, etc. and obtaining consent prior to collection.

Before implementing a vaccination policy, encourage voluntary compliance through education and incentives (if appropriate) assess objective vs. risk.

Vaccination status (currently) is not an exemption from compliance with public health and safety requirement. Businesses are obligated to ensure public health requirements and recommendations are followed by employees and the public on business premises.

Be prepared for a workplace inspection by having a COVID-19 workplace safety plan and following all health and safety requirements/guidance. Safety plan is a written roadmap addressing how business will address COVID-19 transmission risk. The plan includes education, workplace screening, physical distancing, mask or face coverings, cleaning & disinfecting and wearing of PPE.

January 19th, 2021

By 2021 Speakers

Jeff Yuan of Apotex made a presentation on Apotex COVID-19: Site Management Plan. The key points were:

The purpose of the Plan is to prevent and contain COVID-19 and demonstrate due diligence for Public Health, WSIB and MOL.

The Preventative Measures implemented include:

  • A working from home policy.
  • Self-monitoring & screening.
  • Screening contractors and vendors.
  • International screening.
  • Changing cafeteria arrangements.
  • Limiting the numbers of employees allowed in certain areas.
  • Eliminating the cross-over of shifts.
  • Restricting travel between Apotex sites.
  • Controlling locker room access.
  • Segregating of hallway traffic.
  • Sharing & communicating the Plan.
  • PA announcements & posted signage reminders of COVID-19 protocols.
  • Mandatory mask usage on site.
  • Restricting the number of entrances and temperature screening at entrances.
  • Employee training and testing.
  • No sharing of work vehicles.

Apotex is contact tracing for presumptive or positive cases.

Effectiveness checking is undertaken using audits of site controls, management walkthroughs, getting feedback from employees and regular reviews on updated COVID-19 guideline through Public Health.

Facility changes were made to the cafeteria, locker rooms, hallways & stairwells, temperature screening, cleaning and signage.

The presentation concluded with an outline on the managing process for confirmed cases, notifications for any workplace outbreaks and available resources.