Are you in danger?
This summer, thousands of students across Canada will get jobs in small and medium-sized businesses, and at institutions such as hospitals and schools.
Some will be ambassadors for community festivals, while others will create Web pages for local businesses. Entrepreneurial youth will create their own jobs or will volunteer to help with hundreds of community projects.
It is important for young Canadians to be aware of health and safety issues in the workplace, especially as they begin their summer jobs. Both employers and employees have responsibilities when it comes to health and safety in the workplace.
Why is health and safety awareness important?
- It could save your life!
- It could prevent you from getting injured.
- Something tragic could happen to you, even on your first day of work.
- You need to be aware of potential hazards in the workplace.
- You need to help others become aware.
- You need to know what protection and compensation is available to you.
- Proper training is vital for your safety.
Myths and realities
- I can take risks. I won’t die.
- In 2016, 56 workers aged 15 to 29 died in Canadian workplaces.
- I can handle anything. I’m young and fit.
- Approximately one quarter of all occupational injuries resulting in time away from work involve workers between the ages of 15 and 29.
- Nothing will happen to me. I’m safe at work.
- More people are injured on the job than in traffic accidents.
- I must do any job my employer tells me to do.
- You have the right to refuse unsafe work.
- I am not responsible for workplace safety. This is my employer’s responsibility.
- You are responsible for knowing and complying with all workplace regulations.
- Labour Force Historical Review, Statistics Canada.
- Canadian Centre for Occupational Health and Safety (CCOHS)
- National Work Injury Statistics Program (NWISP), Association of Workers’ Compensation Boards of Canada
You have three fundamental rights
- The right to know what hazards are present on the job
- The right to participate in health and safety activities
- The right to refuse unsafe work
Employer and employee responsibilities
- To provide a safe and healthy workplace;
- To train employees on potential hazards and to ensure employees have the required certification;
- To correct unsafe actions and conditions;
- To ensure protective equipment is available and being used; and
- To report and investigate all accidents and incidents.
- To know and comply with all regulations;
- To protect yourself, your co-workers, and members of the public who may be affected by your actions;
- To report unsafe actions and unsafe conditions to your employer;
- To use protective equipment as required by the employer; and
- To report immediately any accident, incident, or illness to your employer.
Observation, learning, and experience are key to recognizing potential safety hazards in the workplace!
For more information on health and safety in the workplace, visit the Canada Centre for Occupational Health and Safety (CCOHS) website.
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