Consumer and Hazardous Products Safety Directorate (CHPSD)

The Consumer and Hazardous Products Safety Directorate (CHPSD) in the Healthy Environments and Consumer Safety Branch of Health Canada helps to protect the health and safety of Canadians by identifying, assessing, managing and communicating health and safety risks posed by consumer products, cosmetics and workplace hazardous products. CHPSD administers two Programs — the Consumer Product Safety Program (CPSP) and the Workplace Hazardous Products Program (WHPP) — with our partners.

What We Do

Consumer Product Safety Program (CPSP)

The CPSP is co-administered by CHPSD and the Consumer Products and Controlled Substances Directorate of the Regulatory Operations and Enforcement Branch. Together, we prevent, detect and respond to health or safety risks posed by consumer products and cosmetics. Our work includes:

  • assessing risks to human health or safety from consumer products and cosmetics;
  • developing national risk management strategies such as regulations, policies and guidelines;
  • planning, coordinating and providing support, advice and guidance for compliance and enforcement activities;
  • working with national and international standards development bodies in the development of standards.

The CPSP carries out its mandate through the authorities of the following legislation:

Workplace Hazardous Products Program (WHPP)

WHPP plays a key role in ensuring workers are protected from health and safety risks posed by the use, storage or handling of hazardous products in workplaces by establishing hazard classification and communication requirements for these products. Our work includes:

  • setting out the hazard classification and communication requirements through the regulation of Workplace Hazardous Materials Information System (WHMIS) labels and Safety Data Sheets (SDSs);
  • planning, coordinating and providing support, advice and guidance for compliance and enforcement activities; and
  • authorizing confidential business information claims under the Hazardous Materials Information Review Act.

The WHPP carries out its mandate through the authorities of the following legislation:

WHPP coordinates the administration and governance of WHMIS in collaboration with federal, provincial and territorial occupational health and safety agency (FPT) partners. As a shared responsibility, WHPP regulates industry (i.e., manufacturers and suppliers) and our FPT partners regulate the workplace.

How We Do It

CHPSD's work is carried out within the following:

Director General's Office (DGO)

The Director General’s Office manages shared accountability functions and provides oversight and management for the work within the Directorate under the two programs — CPSP and WHPP. The DGO works closely with the Directors of the bureaus; chairs the Directorate Management Committee; and leads the Directorate's strategic and integrated planning, and performance measurement.

Risk Assessment Bureau (RAB)

The Risk Assessment Bureau primarily supports the work of the CPSP. The Bureau undertakes risk assessment and hazard analysis to assess emerging hazards, identify and assess product trends — including the establishment of methodologies, approaches and priorities to assess these risks. RAB is also home to information and data services (this work also supports the WHPP) and is responsible for external relations. More specifically, the Divisions within RAB include:

  • The Triage and Surveillance Division, which manages the reporting of product-related incidents to Health Canada, along with other surveillance activities;
  • The Risk Assessment Division, which evaluates the safety of products and cosmetics relating to chemical and microbial hazards, and conducts hazard analyses and risk assessment activities relating to mechanical, physical, flammability and electrical hazards;
  • The Product Safety Laboratory (an ISO/IEC 17025 accredited lab), which performs testing of consumer products to identify mechanical, flammability, electrical and chemical hazards. The lab also develops and validates test methods, generates knowledge in support of risk assessment and risk management activities, and participates in the development of national and international standards;
  • The Business Information and Data Services Division, which provides various services including business analysis and process design, analytics, records management and primary review of cosmetic notifications; and
  • The External Relations Division, which coordinates CPSP’s international and intergovernmental relations, outreach and education initiatives, and stakeholder engagement.

Risk Management Bureau (RMB)

The Risk Management Bureau supports the work of the CPSP. The Bureau undertakes centralized scientific risk management services to help minimize Canadians' exposure to non-compliant products and those that pose a danger to human health or safety. The Bureau focuses on the development of regulatory requirements, national and international standards and the identification of appropriate risk management tools, including compliance and enforcement activities.

The Divisions within RMB include:

  • The Risk Management Strategies Division, which leads the development of regulatory proposals for new regulations and amendments to existing regulations, participates in the development of national and international product safety standards and leads the identification and implementation of appropriate risk management tools. The Division also chairs internal national product committees, which serve to improve national consistency in our risk management approaches and compliance and enforcement activities.
  • The Compliance and Enforcement Division, which is responsible for the coordination of national compliance verification projects, recall communications and compliance and enforcement activities domestically and at the border. The Division is also responsible for the development of the program’s compliance and enforcement policies and procedures.

Workplace Hazardous Materials Bureau (WHMB)

The Workplace Hazardous Materials Bureau is responsible for Health Canada’s WHPP that administers the HPA, the HMIRA and their associated regulations. WHPP regulates Canadian industry (including importers and suppliers) and requires them to communicate hazards associated with workplace hazardous products through the provision of WHMIS labels and SDSs. This hazard communication standard forms one aspect of WHMIS, which is implemented through coordinated federal, provincial and territorial legislation. The implementation of WHMIS relies on a complex system of interactions between partners, including federal, provincial and territorial jurisdictions, and other stakeholder groups, such as suppliers of workplace chemicals, employers, and workers. WHMB provides advice and guidance on requirements in Canada, and coordinates national compliance and enforcement activities.

The Divisions within WHMB include:

  • The Chemical Hazards Evaluation and Management Division leads the review and classification of chemicals under the HPR, which specifies requirements for hazard communication in Canada for safety data sheets and labels of workplace hazardous products. The Division conducts such activities to support the delivery of compliance and enforcement activities under the HPA and to support the review of claims filed under the HMIRA to protect confidential business information. The Division also contributes to the development of hazard communication standards at an international level, and works to align Canadian requirements with those international standards.
  • The Regulatory Affairs, Compliance and Enforcement Division reviews, maintains, and leads the administration of the HPA, HMIRA and their associated regulations. This involves leading the review of claims filed under the HMIRA to protect confidential business information, and as well as leading compliance and enforcement activities under the HPA. The Division collaborates with international partners to advance standards for worker safety, and develops general policies on appropriate communication of workplace chemical hazards.

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