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Multi-Year Partnership Aimed at Initiating a Change in Attitude and a Shift in Culture

Oct
17

Media Release
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
October 17, 2019

Multi-Year Partnership Aimed at Initiating a Change in Attitude and a Shift in Culture

REGINA, SK, October 17, 2019 – the Saskatchewan Construction Safety Association (SCSA) and the Saskatchewan Junior Hockey League (SJHL) are proud to announce that the partnership that was entered into for the 2017-2018 hockey season, and extended for the 2018-2019 season, is now a multi-year agreement that will see safety messaging featured prominently in the SJHL arenas, online and in print.

SCSA President, Collin Pullar, explains, “There are parallels that can be drawn between preventing critical sports injuries and preventing critical injuries in the workplace. Through our partnership with the SJHL we are doing some pretty creative stuff to make that connection. With the print and video creative that has been produced this year, we are hoping to initiate a change in attitude when it comes to preventing serious injuries and, we believe, that that change in attitude has the potential to impact how safety is viewed and practiced in this province. Today, business leaders are recognizing that losing a member of the team can impact the ability to get the job done on time and on budget. So looking at preventing the most impactful injuries makes good business sense.’

SJHL President, Bill Chow, adds, “The word ‘safety’ has become an important word, not only in the sporting world but also in the workplace. Many of the young men playing in the Saskatchewan Jr Hockey League will become employees and business owners in Saskatchewan once they have completed their hockey careers. By embracing the word “safety” now – whether that be in the context of player safety or workplace safety – these young players will have the best opportunity to have a long and successful hockey experience or, in the case of a workplace, a workday that ends with being able to see their family and loved ones. All injuries come at a cost. Embracing safety early in one’s hockey and work career pays off in immeasurable ways in the long run. The partnership between the SCSA and the SJHL highlights the idea that we can be safe while still doing what we love to do.”

It is estimated that preventable injuries cost the provincial economy $1.1 billion each year. The #SuitUp4Safety campaign is comprised of a series of safety messages that will be featured on the digital displays in each of the 12 communities that host SJHL teams, in the SCSA’s Safety Advocate newsletter, in the SJHL’s Overtime magazine and on the social media channels of both organizations. This year a 15-second and a 30-second video will be created and played during LIVE streamed events.

A short video has been created to kick off the #SuitUp4Safety campaign that features Collin Pullar “suiting up” for a hockey game and Bill Chow donning the personal protective equipment (PPE) common to the construction industry. To view, visit the SCSA YouTube channel.

For more information, please contact:

Terri Larsen
Marketing Coordinator

Saskatchewan Construction Safety Association
terril@scsaonline.ca
306.525.0175 ext. 232


About the Saskatchewan Construction Safety Association

The Saskatchewan Construction Safety Association (SCSA) is an industry-funded, membership-based, non-profit organization that provides cost-effective, accessible safety training and advice to employers and employees in the construction industry throughout the province to reduce the human and financial losses associated with injuries. Registered March 22, 1995 the SCSA is, and has been since inception, committed to injury prevention. Serving almost 10,000 member companies, the major business units of the association are Advisory Services, Corporate Development, Corporate Services, Program Services and Training. 

About the Saskatchewan Junior Hockey League

The Saskatchewan Junior Hockey League is a Junior A ice hockey league under Hockey Canada, a part of the Canadian Junior Hockey League. Open to North American-born players 20 years of age or younger, the SJHL's 12 teams play in three divisions: the Olympic Buildings, Sherwood and Viterra Divisions. A major attraction in Saskatchewan, the SJHL draws 400,000 fans each season. The winner of the SJHL playoffs advances to play in the ANAVET Cup against the champion from the MJHL, for the right to represent the Western region at the National Junior A Championship.

After the Ban: the Continuing Impact of Asbestos and the Need for Prevention

Oct
9

On Monday, October 7th, 2019, Dr. Paul Demers presented asbestos results from the national Burden of Occupational Cancer in Canada project, results from the surveillance projects identifying groups at highest risk for asbestos-related disease, and trends and projections for mesothelioma, as well as a bit of their other asbestos research.  His presentation also focused  on some of the work with the Institute for Work and Health to assess the economic impact of asbestos exposure.  Paul stressed the continuing need for prevention, presenting  recommendations and other considerations, as well as some of the challenges and need for further research in this area. 

To view the videos from the sessions click on the links below:

After the Ban: the Continuing Impact of Asbestos and the Need for Prevention

The impact of Exposure to Workplace Carcinogens in Canada

Paul A. Demers, PhD
Director, Occupational Cancer Research Centre
Professor (status), Dalla Lana School of Public Health, University of Toronto

https://www.occupationalcancer.ca/aboutocrc/people/scientists-and-affiliated-scientists/

 

Partnership Rewards Fall Protection Use on Worksites

Oct
2

Throughout August, September and October, WorkSafe Saskatchewan, in partnership with the Saskatchewan Construction Safety Association (SCSA), is conducting a campaign to recognize residential construction workers who are committed to safety on the job site.

As part of this campaign, the WorkSafe team and the SCSA will visit residential construction sites throughout the province this fall to identify workers who are wearing their PPE and fall protection. The SCSA will select a worker to win a duffel bag containing useful items. In addition, crews will be treated to coffee and donuts. The winners and their company’s safety practices will be announced on social media and local radio. To learn more: www.worksafesask.ca/rewardingsafety

Photo contest - Construction compaies are invited to participate in the campaign to help make PPE and fall protection a priority on all Saskatchewan residential construction sites. Simply share a photo of a crew with fall protection in place on #WorkSafe social media channels to get rewarded

Safety Construction Orientation Training (SCOT®)

Sep
26

The Safety Construction Orientation Training (SCOT®) program is an interactive, online training course composed of 13 modules, each focused on a different fundamental aspect of worksite safety. SCOT is convenient, easy-to-use and readily accessible online. The program provides the basics in construction safety and requires 100% mastery of 13 modules which include:

Workplace Law
Workplace Hazards
Managing Worksite Conditions and Equipment
Personal Physical Care and Conduct
WHMIS2015
Powered Mobile Equipment
Ladder and Scaffold Safety
Fall Protection
Environmental Safety
Excavating and Trenching
Defensive Driving
Personal Protective Equipment
Emergency Response

 

 

OHS Compliance Cheat Sheet: Work Refusals

Sep
16

OHS Compliance Cheat Sheet: Work Refusals
The Dangerous Work Refusal Dilemma
- adapted from the September 2019 issue of OHS Insider

Refusing to perform assigned work is normally an act of insubordination for which a worker can be disciplined. But OHS laws create a special exemption that allows workers to refuse unreasonably dangerous work to protect their own or another person’s safety. Disciplining workers for exercising their refusal rights is a form of reprisal or “discrimination” banned by the law. And the dangerous conditions that prompt the refusal may potentially be serious OHS violations that must be addressed immediately. On the other hand, work refusals can be highly disruptive and are supposed to be used only as a last resort. That’s why refusal rights are subject to strict limitations affecting both the nature of the worker’s safety concern and the process of initiating the refusal. If the limitations aren’t met, the refusal is invalid and the worker may be disciplined for continuing to engage in it. While it may sound simple, responding to a work refusal and assessing its validity is hard to do, especially in the heat and tension of the moment. Following are some things to consider:

1. Which Workers Can Refuse Dangerous Work
Refusal rights cover any worker asked to do a dangerous job or confront a dangerous condition—union or non-union, full-time or part-time, temporary or permanent, paid or volunteer—as long as the danger is real and the proper refusal processes are followed.

2. When a Refusal Is and Is Not Justified
A worker has the right to refuse to do any specific job or task if they believe it is unusually dangerous. The danger may be to the worker or to any other person. An unusual danger could include:

  • A danger that is not normal for the job (e.g., repairing a roof in dangerous winds);
  • A danger that would normally stop work (e.g., operating a forklift with a flat tire); or
  • A situation for which you are not properly trained, equipped, or experienced to do the work assigned (e.g., cleaning windows on a tall building with no fall protection equipment or training).  

Sincere: First, workers must genuinely believe that they’re in danger and not use the refusal as a pretext to get out of an unpleasant assignment.

Reasonable: Sincerity isn’t enough. Workers must also have “reasonable” grounds to believe that work operations, conditions or equipment pose a danger to themselves or others. “Reasonable” is an objective standard that evaluates whether an average person in the same circumstances would consider the operation, equipment or condition dangerous.

Unusual: Even if the fear is sincere and the danger is real, the refusal may still not be justified if it’s an inherent and normal part of the job. However, workers who do dangerous jobs are allowed to refuse work that puts them at abnormal and non-inherent risk.

3. How the Refusal Begins
Workers can’t just pack up and go home. They must immediately notify their supervisor or employer that they’re engaging in a work refusal and explain their health and safety concerns.

4. The Initial Investigation Stage: Supervisor and/Employer
Once a worker explains why they have refused work, the supervisor or other person who receives the notice must take immediate action. The options:

  • Correct the health and safety hazard that prompted the worker to engage in the refusal; or
  • Investigate the situation and determine if there is a danger and, if so, how to correct it.

5. The Initial Investigation Findings of the Supervisor and/or Employer
The initial refusal investigation must take place immediately and reach 1 of 2 conclusions:

  • Danger - corrective actions taken or needed (including informing the Occupational Health and Safety committee); or
  • No danger - corrective actions unnecessary.

The worker now has a decision to make:

  • Accept the corrective actions taken or no danger determination and return to work; or
  • continue the refusal. NOTE: if the worker decides to continue the refusal the OHS Committee will convene an emergency meeting to investigate the refusal, meet and vote to determine if the worker has reasonable grounds to refuse the work. If the concern cannot be resolved within the workplace, an occupational health officer at the Occupational Health and Safety Division should be contacted.

6. The OHS Officer Investigation
Upon receiving notification, the agency sends an official to investigate the situation and issue whatever orders he/she believes are necessary to resolve the situation.

7. The Possibility of a Court Appeal
Although it doesn’t happen very often, workers who are still unsatisfied at this point still have one last option and that is to appeal the OHS investigator’s findings.

8. What Happens to the Worker during the Refusal
Time spent during a refusal counts as work time for which the refusing worker is entitled to full pay and benefits.

To read the full article, click here.

We Are Listening

Sep
10

As an industry-funded, membership-based, non-profit organization that provides cost-effective, accessible safety training advice to nearly 10,000 employers and their employees in the residential, commercial and industrial construction industry throughout Saskatchewan to reduce the human and financial losses associated with injuries, the SCSA’s mission is constructing safety leadership. The Board of Directors wants to hear member companies' thoughts and ideas on how to best achieve the SCSA's mission and vision - to create the safest construction environment in Canada. President, Collin Pullar explains in this short video.

Collin Pullar on Tall Walking

Sep
4

Mention Saskatchewan outside the province and it is often the butt of jokes about its topography (you can watch your dog run away for days), despite the landscape being varied. Cold winters, farming and the Riders are also quick to come to mind in association with the province; however, when the conversation turns its people, words like “gritty”, “resourceful”, “passionate”, “innovative”, and “self-sacrificing” are common.  Saskatchewanians don’t proudly walk tall, the people of Saskatchewan demonstrate that they can “tall walk” through character. Coincidentally, these characteristics are also what differentiates exceptional leaders from good leaders:

Grit – People with grit tend to play and work with a passion to persevere over the long haul. Their tenacity continually causes them to push themselves and others to be better, in spite of setbacks. Grit can be developed, but to do so requires difficulty and discomfort. The elite leaders in business and safety are always pushing themselves to be better, even at times when it is not really needed. The enemy of grit is ease, which typically leads to complacency. Complacency, in turn, leads to lack of competiveness, lower productivity, and, from a safety perspective, is the most common predictor of injuries.

Resourcefulness – Effective leaders are extremely resourceful. They are quick learners and collaborators, particularly in situations that are difficult or confusing. On site, they are the ones that instinctually gather the team and figure out what they need to do to finish an unusual job, safely, and on time.  Despite the odds, they find a way to solve problems and are not afraid to try new methods to take on new challenges. 

Having a motivating “WHY” – Have you ever worked with, or for, someone that always seemed to inspire others with their passion? This type of individual has shifted their thinking from not just having success, but also significance, in what they do and achieve. Saskatchewan has been lucky to have so many leaders who have made the connection between their work and strengthening their communities. These are the men and women who motivate others through their passion and have dared to build dreams bigger than themselves. 

Innovation – Innovation is often thought of as that incredible and unique "ah-ha" invention that no one has ever thought of and that will change the world as humankind knows it. In practice; however, this is not how innovation typically works. Even revolutionary ideas are not necessarily instances of lightning that suddenly appear in a bottle. Most innovations are small, and often unnoticed, changes to previously well-established ideas, practices, or products. More often, they are the result of combining and applying existing ideas for the simple goal of making things a little better. 

Innovation is not just about being creative either. Being creative is important but creativity by itself, is not innovation. Innovation is a bit different. True innovation requires taking some risks . . . and taking risks means risking failure.  Taking risks means showing some vulnerability and innovation can often mean getting comfortable with being uncomfortable.

Self-Sacrifice and Care for People – While one can develop a range of sharp technical and strategic skills, without a significant care for people, a leader and company breeds dysfunction, arrogance, and coldness, that puts workers and customers at risk.

Exceptional leadership, in particular, has an aspect to it where one can no longer afford to just think selfishly of themselves, their success, and their stuff.  Leaders who begin to care more about seeing others grow are the leaders who gain as much enjoyment from the success of other than of their own success. These leaders often realize the sacred burden that results in sleepless nights concerned about team members and others that are reliant on their leadership. Already tough decision become tougher when the human factor is acknowledged and there is an awareness of the impact on their teams, their communities, etc. Making tough decisions doesn’t always feel good and often requires a balance between sacrificing one’s ego and caring for people.

There is a common Jamaican proverb that says “Wi lickle but wi Tallawah” (we’re little, but we’re Tallawah).  The patios word Tallawah stems from the word stalwart, meaning strong, unwavering, committed, gritty, resolute and unfaltering. The statement literally means, “we may be small, but do not underestimate us, we refuse to be restrained by boundaries or preconceived notions . . . yes we, Tall Walk”.  Saskatchewan people are so well known for this element of their character.  Yes, as a population, they are smaller in number, but many Saskatchewan people have developed the exceptional character and ability to Tall Walk and this has influenced businesses and organizations across this country and around the world. 

Leaders are expected to create vision, see over the horizon, listen closely to signals in the environment, make bold decisions, and focus the team on the major strategic goals all while keeping complacency and distraction from affecting the ability to execute the strategies necessary to succeed. It is a very tall order but Saskatchewan’s Top 100 companies have proven, again that they can take on this challenge to walk tall.

Call For Expressions of Interest - Construction Rescue Competition

Aug
30

This proposed event would be comparable to mine rescue competetions held in other sectors.

For more information please contact edp@scsaonline.ca

SCSA Proud to Support Building Safer Trades Initiative

Aug
13

 Building Safer Trades

August 13, 2019

The Saskatchewan Safety Council and Saskatchewan Building Trades are working together on a joint project. The Building Safer Trades initiative provides free practical safety training and information on union trades for Indigenous youth in Saskatchewan. The project is funded, in part, by the Government of Canada’s Union Training and Innovation Program.

Over 3 years, the project aims to engage and provide training to 432 Indigenous youth between the ages of 14 to 21. This year (2019), the free training is being offered in the Regina Area; in 2020 it will be offered in the Saskatoon area, and in 2021, the Prince Albert area. The project also intends to reach 150 Indigenous teachers, career counselors, and education directors from Tribal Councils.

Lyle Daniels, Inclusion Manager - Build Together at Saskatchewan Building Trades, and Amanda LePine, Community Relations Coordinator with the Saskatchewan Safety Council, will be hosting an Educator’s Workshop on August 28, 2019 in Fort Qu’Appelle to introduce the project.

Participating students will first complete the Career Safety Education program followed by Red Cross Online Blended Learning First Aid/CPR-B (Adult, Infant and Child Rescue).

Below is a list of all the student learning modules included in the Building Safer Trades project.

  • Young Worker’s Readiness Course – This course teaches about workplace health and safety. Learn about the responsibilities, workplace rights and those of the employer.
  • Mental Health Wellness Training – This course teaches how to recognize stress, improve and maintain mental wellness, and how to manage stress effectively.
  • Workplace Hazardous Materials Information System (WHMIS 2015) – This course teaches how to identify, handle, and store chemicals properly and safely.
  • Safety Construction Orientation Training (SCOT) – This course provides a safety overview of worksites in trades and/or building construction. *This course must be selected as the industry orientation to be a part of the Building Safer Trades project*
  • 8 Hours of online First Aid training
  • First Aid & CPR-B instructor-lead hands-on training component in their community thereby eliminating the barrier of location.

A certificate of completion of the Building Safer Trades program will be provided upon completion of all modules. Many thanks to the contributing partner organizations who make Career Safety Education possible. Learn more about them and the program at: www.careersafetyeducation.ca

Mental Health Resources for Construction Industry Available

Jul
26

“In the construction industry hazard recognition and control usually refers to assessing the risks on a job site,” says SCSA President, Collin Pullar, “but business owners and leaders in the industry need to understand that mental health is a safety issue too and it is probably bigger than they realize.” The topic of mental health, and suicide in particular, has been the focus of articles, panel discussions and media across the country since the statistic was released in 2018 that suicide rates in the industry are three times the national average.

According to an article entitled, Suicide in the Construction Industry, published by rbl Chartered Professional Accountants, based in Ontario, “the costs per suicide are even more alarming. A study in New Brunswick found the cost of suicide per death to be $849,877 (Clayton, 1999) while an American study calculated the number at over $1 million (Shepard, 2015). More than 97% of these costs are due to lost productivity, while the remaining 3 percent are costs associated with provision of emergency medical services.”

In theory, recognizing the hazard and taking steps to prevent a mental health incident should be the same as controlling and mitigating the risk of any other job site hazard but often business owners and leaders are not adequately equipped with the knowledge and resources needed. WorkSafe Saskatchewan offers FREE online learning related to Psychological Health and Safety in the workplace for Saskatchewan workers and employers.  E-learning courses are designed to be self-paced and accessible from anywhere in the province. 

The courses were developed by the Canadian Centre of Occupational Health and Safety (CCOHS) and are being delivered in partnership with WorkSafe Saskatchewan. CCOHS courses are unique in that they are developed by subject specialists in the field, and reviewed by representatives from labour, employers and government to ensure the content and approach are unbiased and credible. Following is a list of the FREE e-courses currently offered:

Mental Health:  Awareness
Mental Health:  Communication Strategies
Mental Health:  Health and Wellness Strategies
Mental Health:  Psychologically Safe Workplaces
Mental Health:  Signs, Symptoms and Solutions

To register visit www.ccohs.ca/distributors/sask/

NOTE:  upon registration, a dollar amount will appear; however, once Saskatchewan residency is confirmed during the "checkout" process, the cost will zero.

All Hands In Initiative Reaches Thousands

Jul
25

According to Saskatchewan Workers’ Compensation Board (WCB) claims made in 2017, hand injuries accounted for nearly 30 percent of all injuries in the construction industry. The All Hands In hand health and safety awareness campaign was a partnership between the Saskatchewan Construction Safety Association (SCSA) and WorkSafe Saskatchewan aimed at addressing the high number of cuts and lacerations in this industry with injury prevention messaging.

Through in-person tool box talks, safety meetings and hand safety demonstrations SCSA Advisors distributed hundreds of cut resistant, co-branded gloves. Other campaign elements - which included a broadcast marketing campaign; a concentrated social media campaign which included regular Twitter and Facebook posts; and some print marketing - expanded the audience reach and engagement to the thousands. The All Hands In hand health and safety awareness initiative targetted business owners; health and safety practitioners; and employees or workers through injury prevention messaging efforts.


OHS Compliance Briefing: Workplace Violence

Jul
18

OHS Compliance Briefing: Workplace Violence
- adapted from the July 2019 issue of OHS Insider

What Exactly Does Workplace Violence Mean?

Everybody knows that OHS laws require employers to prevent workplace violence. But what’s far less clear is what exactly “workplace violence” means. In fact, the term doesn’t mean exactly the same thing in each jurisdiction. The three variables:

1. What Counts as “Violence”
“Violence” includes actions and threats of physical harm. But it may also include harassment and other forms of “vexatious conduct” that cause or have the potential to cause “psychological” harm. Of course, jurisdictions that limit “violence” to physical dangers also typically have separate OHS protections for harassment. Even so, the distinction is important because measures required for violence are different than those required harassment.

2. Whether Prevention Duties Cover Worker-on-Worker Violence
Most jurisdictions define “violence” as including acts by a “person” that cause or threaten harm to a worker.

3. What a “Workplace” Is
The term “workplace” goes beyond the physical facility or site to any location where a worker engages or is likely to be while engaging in work for the employer, including vehicles and mobile equipment. On the flip side, there are six jurisdictions—MB, NB, NS, SK, NT, NU—where OHS workplace violence duties (or at least some of those duties) apply only to specified high-risk workplaces, including health care, financial, retail, police, etc.

Bottom Line
If, as a business owner, there is a workplace violence prevention program, it is imperative that the definitions of “workplace violence”, “workplace” and “violence” are clearly understood and what the terms mean in each jurisdiction in which the business operates.

FEDERAL
Workplace violence: any action, conduct, threat or gesture towards an employee in their work place that can reasonably be expected to cause harm, injury or illness to that employee
Workplace: any place an employee is engaged in work for employer

SASKATCHEWAN
Violence: attempted, threatened or actual conduct of a person that causes or is likely to cause injury, including any threatening statement or behaviour that gives a worker reasonable cause to believe that the worker is at risk of injury
Place of employment: any plant, (i.e., premises, site, land, mine, water, structure, fixture or equipment employed or used in the carrying on of an occupation) in or on which one or more workers work, usually work or have worked

To view the definitions as they relate to other jurisdictions, or to read the full article, click here.

The Canada-Saskatchewan Job Grant is Now Accepting Applications

Jul
11

The Canada-Saskatchewan Job Grant helps employers train new or existing employees for jobs that need to be filled. This flexible program is designed to meet the needs of businesses of all sizes, in all industries and regions. Having the right skills helps employees excel and succeed in today’s fast-paced labour market.

The Canada-Saskatchewan Job Grant is an employer-driven program that:

  • Helps businesses and non-profit organizations train new or existing employees for available jobs; and
  • Provides more opportunities for unemployed and underemployed workers to receive training.

Through the program, the employer contributes one-third of the training cost, while the federal and provincial governments contribute the remaining two-thirds. Training must be provided by an eligible third-party training institution and must be completed within one calendar year from the start date.

The Ministry of Immigration and Career Training will contact employers within three business days to confirm receipt of applications. The Ministry will evaluate fully completed applications and provide a decision on the application within 20 business days. To find out how the Canada-Saskatchewan Job Grant can help your business, visit - www.saskatchewan.ca/business/hire-train-and-manage-employees/apply-for-the-canada-saskatchewan-job-grant

#SlowDown in the #OrangeZone and help keep workers safe

Jul
3

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
July 3, 2019

#SlowDown in the #OrangeZone and help keep workers safe
Police watching for speeders in work zones this month

It’s summer, and that means it’s construction season. The focus of July’s Traffic Safety Spotlight is work zones. Encountering one of the orange zones may result in a bit of a delay while you’re en route to your next fun summer destination, but SGI is reminding drivers to be mindful of workers while travelling through those construction areas – be patient, slow down and stay alert. Always obey traffic signs and directions from any flag person you see.  

“That’s someone’s workplace you’re driving through,” noted Honourable Joe Hargrave, Minister responsible for SGI. “The extra time you might gain by speeding through a work zone just isn’t worth the risk.”

“The best advice is to plan ahead, check in with the Highway Hotline, and allow yourself additional time to get to your destination, safely,” said Honourable Lori Carr, Minister of Highways and Infrastructure.

“Workers and machinery are both very close to traffic in work zones,” said Shantel Lipp, President of the Saskatchewan Heavy Construction Association.  “Work zones tend to be more congested due to lane reductions, so things can happen fast – which makes any number of speeders in work zones unacceptable.”

“These workers are our friends, neighbours, and family members – it’s important that we do our part to get them home safe,” said Collin Pullar, President of the Saskatchewan Construction Safety Association. “Through awareness and education, we can prevent many incidents and close calls in our work zones and help create the safest construction environment in Canada.”

Drivers are required to slow to 60 km/h or the speed that’s posted when passing a highway worker, flag person or highway equipment with warning lights flashing.

Exceeding the 60 km/h speed limit by 20 km/h will cost you $440. If you’re going 40 km/h over the limit, that’s going to cost you $1,008. Plus, you’ll lose at least three Safe Driver Recognition points on your licence, which can lead to further financial penalties.

The fines are significant for a reason. Reducing your speed can help avoid a close call, or something much worse. Give yourself more time to react to a potential collision and reduce your speed.

Police will be keeping an eye on work zones in July, and some work zones will be monitored by photo radar. In 2018, there were nearly 1,500* convictions for speeding in work zones. That’s nearly 1,500 times drivers ignored reduced speed limits and put workers’ lives at risk.

Drivers can follow these tips to keep our roads safe:

  • Always give the road your full attention, but it’s especially important in work zones. Slow down and expect the unexpected.
  • When planning your trip, expect delays – leave earlier, and be patient.
  • Keep a safe following distance between you and the vehicle in front of you.
  • Obey posted signs and flag persons. You may not see workers right away, and even if they aren’t there work zones have other safety hazards to keep in mind.
  • When a lane is closed in a work zone, embrace the zipper merge. It makes traffic flow more quickly and efficiently.


Both road safety and workplace safety are priorities for SGI. We support Safe Saskatchewan’s Mission: Zero. The only acceptable number of preventable injuries in Saskatchewan is zero. It’s up to all of us, on the road and off, to prevent injuries.

*Based on preliminary data

-30-

Media inquiries

Tyler McMurchy
Manager, Media Relations
Saskatchewan Government Insurance
306-751-1837
306-535-6207 (cell)
tmcmurchy@sgi.sk.ca

 

SCSA Named Construction Safety Experts of the Year by Build Magazine

Jul
1

A Message for Leaders on Building Diverse and Inclusive Work-sites and Projects

Jun
27

Any type of infrastructure construction project requires not only the correct permits from officials, but also a social license to operate in order to acquire community acceptance. With the increase in economic development projects both on and off reserve in Saskatchewan, that means understanding each community’s unique culture, and in some cases, building trust and coming to a common understanding of project impacts and benefits socially, economically and environmentally.

According to Derek Hoffman, a partner at Miller Thomson law firm in Saskatoon, “you have to be aware that what your cultural norms and practices are may not be the same in Aboriginal communities.” In a presentation to business leaders at the Construction Law Conference in April 2018, Hoffman shared his insight on Aboriginal engagement:

Know and Understand What is Appropriate Engagement

Hoffman recommends conducting research at the planning stages of a project, this can include asking for guidance and observing how things are done. Obtaining the answers to questions like, “will there be opening prayers or closing prayers for meetings?” or “will a gift of tobacco be expected?” are key to understanding cultural norms specific to a community.

Acceptance; however, goes beyond solely respecting the Indigenous customs and culture – it’s important to engage with the community to ensure that inclusion is evident. Attending and sponsoring community events is one way Hoffman suggests engaging a community, but cautions against failing to consider other options and executing an event that is too extravagant. “Be careful not to be over the top about it because that can draw an adverse reaction. Don’t be the centre of attention,” he adds.

Obtain Leadership Buy-In

The ultimate goal of ‘social license to operate’ is to gain community support, or at the very least, non-opposition. The first step in gaining community support has to take the form of a commitment from the leadership that they won’t oppose the proposed development plan or construction project. It’s a good idea for a company’s senior leadership to meet with the community’s leadership and be prepared to track changes in leadership and other pertinent information.

Relationship Building

“Relationship building and trust requires buy-in from your leadership down to your front-line people, and unfortunately all it takes is one off-the-cuff remark from someone that’s not aligned with those values to destroy a lot of the time and effort that’s been invested in establishing a relationship and open communication channels,” says Hoffman, “With this in mind, it’s important to check your organization’s internal capacities. Do your leadership team and staff have cultural sensitivity training? Is there a clear understanding of communication protocol - who talks to whom, for example?”

Another component of creating a solid foundation for trust in the community is the commitment to a diverse and inclusive workforce. Hoffman suggests that part of the engagement efforts may include identifying Indigenous employment or subcontractor opportunities or working with training and apprenticeship organizations to develop the skills required for a particular project.

From the Office of the Treaty Commissioner, “The importance of economic development to the wellbeing of First Nations in Saskatchewan and contribution to the health and resiliency of Saskatchewan’s economy cannot be understated. The entrepreneurial spirit of First Nations in Saskatchewan is acknowledged as a critical engine of economic growth, innovation and diversification in our province.”

SCSA proud to sponsor First-Ever Indigenous Solar PV Certification Course in Saskatchewan

Jun
20

Media Release

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

June 20, 2019

School’s In For Summer:  the George Gordon First Nation Partners With Mo’ Solar Company to Offer First-Ever Indigenous Solar PV Certification Course in Saskatchewan

REGINA, SK, June 20, 2019 – While many youth across the Province are gearing up for summer holidays, an eager group of young indigenous people are busy ‘hitting the books’ this week in Regina. 

In partnership with the Canadian Solar Institute, Mo’ Solar Company and George Gordon Developments Ltd. (the business development arm for George Gordon First Nation) are proud to launch a first-of-its-kind program offering in Saskatchewan – #MPoweredByMo.  The program targets First Nation participants to build technical skills and knowledge in renewable energy.

The unique one-week, hands-on program immerses students in the science and technology of solar photovoltaics; electricity basics; proper system sizing, design and installation techniques; commissioning and construction safety.  Strategic delivery partners were also engaged to provide expertise in areas such as renewable energy-specific rules (section 64) of the Canadian Electrical Code, fall protection and the importance of PPE.  Course graduates will emerge as competent and CSA-accredited solar PV design & installation professionals.  Most importantly, they will have the confidence and connections to be successful in the growing renewable energy sector.

“The students have been working very hard, and are asking some excellent questions.  They seem to be catching on very quickly, and bring a ton of enthusiasm to the classroom each day,” said Mario Borsato, NABCEP-certified head instructor and founder of the Canadian Solar Institute.  “I’ve been in this industry for a decade now, and I’m still learning every day.”

Last month, SaskPower and First Nations Power Authority (FNPA) signed an historic First Nations Opportunity Agreement for developing 20 megawatts (MW) of new utility-scale solar generation projects.  The agreement is estimated to be worth $85 million over the course of 20 years, and will undoubtedly create many employment opportunities in the construction and maintenance of the facilities.

“We see this training as a great opportunity for our people to gain employment in the construction of these future solar projects.  George Gordon First Nation has a strategic plan for the future, and one of the core pillars is renewable energy and self-sufficiency,” said Glen Pratt, CEO of George Gordon Developments Ltd.

The idea for the specialized course came as a result of an observation by Mo’ Solar Company’s founder & CEO, Bradyn Parisian, who spent nearly half a decade working for SaskPower in key accounts, renewables and energy conservation.

“I simply noticed that there weren’t any quality, hands-on training programs within our Provincial borders.  If a person wants to gain a certification, you must to travel to Alberta or Manitoba.  A few different online offerings are available, but I’ve personally found this model isn’t the best for learning practical skills or getting your hands on actual solar PV components and gaining experience with installs,” said Parisian, who is also a sessional university business instructor with First Nations University of Canada and the University of Regina.  “Furthermore, there is nothing specific to Indigenous communities, which face a number of unique circumstances as opposed to non-indigenous communities.  With the growing number of opportunities for First Nations & Métis in renewable energy – it just clicked.  We had to make the course a reality.”

In just its first offering, it is also seeing a great deal of success. George Gordon Developments informs that employers in the solar installation sector are very interested in its first crop of graduates.  The majority of the students have already received assurances of employment post-graduation, which will be held on Friday June 21 (National Indigenous Peoples Day) at 12pm at the George Gordon First Nation Business Centre in Regina (2704 – 10th Avenue).  MEDIA ARE INVITED TO ATTEND THIS EVENT.

About Mo’ Solar Company

Mo’ Solar Company is a 100% Sask-owned and operated EPC solar photovoltaic system design and installation contractor based in Regina, SK.  The company serves residential, commercial and ag clients across southern Saskatchewan.

About George Gordon Developments Ltd.

GGDL has been the economic development arm of the George Gordon First Nation since 2011, and is headquartered in Punnichy, SK.

 

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For more information, please contact:

Bradyn Parisian, Founder & CEO

Mo’ Solar Company

Telephone: 306.580.1469

Email: info@mosolar.ca

 

OHS Compliance Legal Briefing: Joint Health and Safety Committees (JHSC)

Jun
12

OHS Compliance Legal Briefing: Joint Health and Safety Committees (JHSC)
- adapted from the May 2019 issue of OHS Insider

Although workplace safety committees are found at work sites across the world, Canada is one of the few places where they’re mandatory. Reason: In most industrialized countries, almost all responsibility for workplace health and safety falls on the employer. But Canadian OHS laws are based on the Internal Responsibility System (IRS) theory in which keeping the workplace safe is a shared responsibility among not only employers but also workers, supervisors and other stakeholders.

When is a JHSC or Occupational Health & Safety (OHS) Committee Required?

An employer must establish an OHS committee at any workplace [by Saskatchewan law, where 10 or more] workers are regularly employed. For construction sites, the need for an OHS committee is determined not by simply the number of workers but also whether the project is expected to last at least 90 days.

Who Creates an OHS Committee?

In most cases, the employer is responsible for establishing an OHS committee at its workplace. Exception: At construction projects where workers of 2 or more employers work, the OHS committee must be established by the employer designated as constructor (aka, primary or general contractor).

How an OHS Committee Is Created?

The first step is to select the worker and management members and have each group choose one of their number to serve as co-chair. Once the members and co-chairs are in place, the OHS committee holds its first meeting at which members adopt a document called the Terms of Reference or Rules of Procedure setting out the OHS committee’s purpose and operating procedures, including the OHS committee’s goals and functions; the roles, responsibilities and term lengths of individual members and co-chairs; and how meetings will be run and how often they’ll be held; etc. In Saskatchewan, the frequency of meetings is set out as follows:

41(1) Subject to subsection (2), a committee shall:
(a) hold its first meeting within two weeks after being established;
(b) hold three subsequent meetings at intervals not exceeding one month; and
(c) after that, hold regular meetings at intervals not exceeding three months

How Committee Members Designated?

39(1) An employer or contractor who is required to establish a committee shall:
(a) in designating the members:
(ii) ensure that there is a sufficient number of members representing workers on the committee to equitably represent groups of workers who have substantially different occupational health and safety concerns;

How Long Can OHS Committee Members Serve?

In Saskatchewan, the term of an OHS committee member can be up to 3 years and the member can be re-elected.

What are the Core Functions of the OHS Committee?

Core OHS committee functions under OHS laws include participating in workplace hazard identification and assessment; consulting in the development and review of required OHS programs and policies; helping to create worker training and education programs; holding and documenting regular and special meetings; recommending health and safety measures to the employer/constructor; helping to resolve worker health and safety complaints.

To read the full article, click here.

To find out when the next SCSA Occupational Health Committee (OHC) Training Level 1 course is being offered, click here.

SCSA Participates in Second Annual Cade Sprackman Safety Day

Jun
5

For Immediate Release
June 5, 2019
Hudson Bay, SK - Cade Sprackman Safety Day in Hudson Bay

Cade Sprackman
Photo courtesy of Michelle Sprackman

Today, the Saskatchewan Safety Council is hosting the second annual ‘Cade Sprackman Safety Day’ at Hudson Bay Community School.

Students participating in this one-day event have previously completed online safety education through the Career Safety Education program and will further expand their knowledge by learning about Fall Protection and Fire Safety from the Saskatchewan Safety Council, Lockout and Control of Hazardous Energy with Weyerhaeuser, and Eye Protection, Ladder Safety, Hazard Recognition and Head Protection from Saskatchewan Construction Safety Association (SCSA).

As an additional sponsorship, Weyerhaeuser will also provide a BBQ lunch for the entire Hudson Bay Community School.

On January 27th, 2015, Cade Sprackman was killed at his workplace. Michelle, Cade’s mom, said, “I remember him and I talking about what sort of work he would be doing. I asked him about safety and he assured me it was safe. I will never forget the night the RCMP came to the door with news that Cade had died. All they could tell me was that it was an industrial accident that had happened at work. They knew no details.”

Michelle has advocated for youth safety in the workplace and supports Career Safety Education for youth. “Career safety education is so vitally important. Cade naively saw his workplace as safe as he had nothing to compare it to. His employer told him it was safe and so he believed it. We all think that someone has our back; that systems are in place to keep us safe. Systems are only as good as the people behind them and people are fallible. Just like we have to be defensive drivers today, we have to be defensive on the worksite as well.”
Cade, who was raised and educated in Hudson Bay, was creative and imaginative and loved the arts as well as gaming and cinema. He aspired one day to work in the arts as a cinema director.

A video on Cade's story can be viewed on YouTube.

Career Safety Education encourages the development of awareness, attitudes and habits which result in a culture of safety affecting both workplace and home life. Career Safety Education is the first program of its kind in North America, providing universal access to safety training to all youth in Saskatchewan. Thanks to generous partners, the training is completely FREE for youth between 14 and 21 years of age.

Career Safety Education is comprised of Young Worker’s Readiness Certificate Course (YWRCC), Mental Health - Wellness Strategies, Workplace Hazardous Materials Information System (WHMIS), and an elective from the following: Agriculture: Online Agriculture Training System (OATS), Heavy Construction Roadbuilders: Roadbuilders Safety Training System (RSTS), Trades and Building Construction: Safety Construction Orientation Training (SCOT), and Healthcare: Workplace Assessment and Violence Education (WAVE).

Amanda LePine, Community Relations Coordinator, at the Saskatchewan Safety Council is grateful that the Sprackman Family is sharing their story. She comments that “Cade Sprackman had a vision and dreams to do what he loved. Parents, youth and employers need to hear his story and work to promote safety for youth while at work. We are honoured to be a part of the Cade Sprackman Safety Day and thankful for the support of partners and sponsors. Hopefully hearing Cade’s story will help to prevent youth injuries and fatalities in the workplace.”

The Cade Sprackman Safety Day is an annual event. To be involved, contact Amanda LePine at 306-757-3197. 

Cade Sprackman Safety Day Schedule

9:00 AM: Weyerhaeuser - Presentation to Hudson Bay Community School

9:25 AM: Opening Remarks - Saskatchewan Safety Counci

9:45 AM: Fall Protection - with demonstration - Saskatchewan Safety Council

10:20 AM: Lockout and Control of Hazardous Energy - Weyerhaeuser

11:10 AM: Break

11:15 AM: Eye Protection / Ladder Safety / Hazard Recognition –  SCS

12:16 PM: Lunch Break – BBQ Sponsored by Weyerhaeuse

1:10 PM: Fire Safety with short Intro to Fire Extinguishers - Saskatchewan Safety Counci

2:10 PM: Break

2:20 PM: Head Protection Presentation - SCSA

3:05 PM: Thank You and Closing Remarks

ABOUT THE SASKATCHEWAN SAFETY COUNCIL 
Since 1955, the Saskatchewan Safety Council, a non-profit registered charity, has been dedicated to the prevention of injury in Saskatchewan . . . at home, at play, and at work.

Funded through donations, membership contributions, sponsorships, grants, and the distribution of its safety programs and materials, the revenues generated by the Safety Council are invested within the province of Saskatchewan to further promote safety.

MEDIA CONTACT:
Amanda LePine
Community Relations Coordinator
Saskatchewan Safety Council
445 Hoffer Drive, Regina SK
alepine@sasksafety.org
306-757-3197

Health and Safety Administrator (HSA) Certification

May
30

The SCSA is proud to congratulate Jamie Sawatsky, Administrative Clerk, on achieving her Health and Safety Administrator (HSA) certification. Last year, the SCSA issued 32 HSA certifications and there are currently 155 participants registered in the program. 

When asked why she pursued certification, Sawatsky explained how she wanted to gain the knowledge needed to better assist customers. "They rely on us at the SCSA to point them in the right direction. I feel it is crucial to have a good understanding of the information they need."

The objective of the Health and Safety Administrator (HSA) program is to provide formal training for an administrator of a health and safety program, who does not possess a minimum of three years construction field experience. Certification indicates to employers that the participant has knowledge in various health and safety management skills and principles. This knowledge positions the individual to provide support in the administration of a company’s health and safety program.

For more information on the program requirements and registration process, please visit: www.scsaonline.ca/programs/hsa 

Companies Achieve Certification Under New SECOR® Program Requirements

May
29

This spring, James Donnelly, owner of Over the Top Roofing and Exteriors, and Brendan Lowndes, owner of Brendan’s Roof Repair, were among the first companies to achieve Small Employer Certificate of Recognition (SECOR®) certification under the SCSA’s new SECOR program requirements.

Although smaller in company size, Donnelly and Lowndes find themselves working regularly on bigger jobs, like the current one they are working on together in Regina. The owners took some time out of their day to share a bit about why they decided to pursue SECOR certification and how it has helped them better manage their companies.

“Most of the major contractors, such as the City of Regina, PCL, and Graham Construction, now require SECOR or COR certification to bid on jobs. We were already doing everything safely on site, except for the documentation. Now it shows that we are actually being safe, not just saying we are,” said Donnelly. 

Hazard assessments, safe work practices, training records, and inspection reports are just a few examples of some of the supporting safety documentation required for establishing and maintaining a verifiable safety management system.

“It’s great to have general guidelines of what we need for a safety program – we didn’t have them before and we needed that to ensure our crews go home safely,” added Lowndes.

There are currently more than 80 SCSA member companies seeking SECOR certification. The industry-supported changes to the SECOR certification process impact training and audit requirements as well as the audit process itself.

While continuing to ensure that the program is feasible for smaller companies, these changes serve to strengthen the program integrity of SECOR; holding it to a very similar standard as the nationally-recognized COR program. As an intended benefit, SECOR companies will have the ability to more smoothly transition to the COR program as required or requested.

For more information, please visit www.scsaonline.ca/programs/secor or email scsaprograminfo@scsaonline.ca

Spring 2019 SCSA Safety Advocate

May
28

The SCSA recently released its Spring 2019 Safety Advocate publication, which highlights all of the achievements of the SCSA and its dedicated members in constructing safety leadership. For more information on this publication and to view past issues, please visit: www.scsaonline.ca/news/publications/scsa-safety-advocate-publication

 

Due Diligence

May
9

At the 2019 Constructing Safety Leadership Conference held in Saskatoon on April 10, Amy Groothuis Partner, Miller Thomson LLP, discussed due diligence in a session on Emerging Legal Trends. The following, adapted from the March 2019 issue of OHS Insider, provides an overview of the key points discussed.

There are two ways of achieving a successful outcome at trial if charged with an OHS violation. The first is by demonstrating that there was no violation; and the second is by using the due diligence defence. Most due diligence litigation is about what “reasonable steps” were taken. A business owner is not required to prevent all incidents, injuries and violations, only the ones that should have reasonably been foreseen. Following are seven common arguments that almost never work at trial -

1. “It Wasn’t Foreseeable Because It Never Happened Before”

There’s no such thing as a “free first bite.” If a hazard is foreseeable, the fact that it never happened before is no defence.

2. “We Had a Safety Policy but They Didn’t Follow It”

Simply having a safety policy or procedure isn’t enough if that policy or procedure is:

  • Not in writing;
  • Unclear;
  • Not effectively explained to workers; and/or
  • Routinely ignored or inadequately enforced.

3. “It Was the Worker’s Fault”

The possibility of workers’ messing up or failing to use required safety measures is a foreseeable risk that must be taken into account via a robust Safety Management System.

4. “The Victim Was Drunk/High”

Evidence of a victim’s impairment doesn’t automatically negate liability. A business owner still has to demonstrate that all reasonable steps to protect the victim were taken.

5. “It Was the Subcontractor’s Fault”

Prime contractors in charge of safety and OHS compliance at multi-employer sites can’t blame their contractors and subcontractors for failing to control hazards on the site. The prime contractor is ultimately responsible for having an adequate system in place to oversee and supervise the contractors and subcontractors at the site.

6. “Blame It on Human Error”

News flash: Human beings make mistakes. Exercising due diligence is about recognizing this fact and taking reasonable steps to prevent the mistakes that are foreseeable.

7. “Our Safety Procedures Are First Rate”

Implementing good safety procedures, training, supervision and other administrative measures aren’t enough if the OHS regulations require the use of engineering and physical controls to manage a hazard. While prime contractors have primary they don’t have exclusive responsibility for safety at a multi-employer site. Contractors and subcontractors at the site also have basic OHS responsibilities to protect their own workers.

To read the full article, click here.

NCSO™ GRANDFATHER OF EXPERIENCE DEADLINE AUGUST 31, 2019

May
2

National Construction Safety Officers (NCSO™) certified prior to August 30, 2017 wishing to write the NCSO National Exam have until August 31, 2019 to have their experience criteria grandfathered and achieve certification. After this date, those wishing to write the exam will have to re-apply to the program and submit their experience letters for acceptance based on the new NCSO National Standard requirements.  

Note: The new standard requires three years' construction field experience obtained in the last 10 years

For more information, please email Program Services.

To learn more about the NCSO program, please visit: www.scsaonline.ca/programs/ncso

All Hands In: A Hand Health & Safety Awareness Initiative

Apr
30

A case can be made for hands being ranked as the most valuable and widely used tools in the workplace. Hands are relied on to perform some of the simplest and even the most difficult of tasks. They are used every day to get dressed, drive, type, text, and even play with kids and pets. The temporary and permanent inability to use one or both hands can make day-to-day activities more challenging.

That’s why it is critical that this part of the body be protected from serious injury on the job.

According to Saskatchewan Workers’ Compensation Board claims made in 2017, hand injuries accounted for nearly 30 percent of all injuries in the construction industry.

“Even though our hands are extremely valuable tools, we still see workers  that think cuts are just part of the job or complain that they can’t do their job properly when they have  safety gloves on,” said Sebastian Marktanner, certified National Construction Safety Officer and Senior Safety Advisor with the Saskatchewan Construction Safety Association (SCSA).

“When hand protection is properly selected and used, it should not hinder how you perform a task, and if it does cause an inconvenience, this is minor compared to loss of fingers or permanent nerve damage,” added Marktanner. 

Selecting the proper glove is essential in protecting these tools from on-the-job hazards. The wrong gloves risk injury to the worker and a loss of productivity.

It is important to remember that no single glove will provide protection against every hazard or substance.

During the glove-selection process, identify key elements that are required to perform the job safely:

  • Are chemical hazards present? Do the chemical hazards occur in liquid, gas, powder or vapour form? Will workers’ hands be subject to light splashes or total immersion?
  • Are abrasions and punctures from sharp objects a problem? Many gloves are designed to protect from slashes caused by sharp objects, but few provide high levels of puncture resistance from objects such as the ragged edges of a piece of metal or glass. Will the abrasions or punctures occur to the palm, top of the hand, or both?
  • Is a secure grip vital to the application? When workers cannot grasp objects securely, especially those that are wet or oily, the objects may slide through their hands and result in injuries or damaged products;
  • Is dexterity important? Working at high speeds require having the dexterity and tactile sensitivity to handle small parts or objects quickly;
  • Is protection or dexterity the priority? Thinner-gauge gloves offer more dexterity; heavier-gauge gloves offer greater hand protection;
  • Are the gloves properly sized for individual workers? Gloves that are too large will slide around on the hands, won't provide protection where it is needed, and could become caught in machinery or moving parts. Gloves that are too snug can decrease a worker's dexterity and may become so uncomfortable that workers will remove them;
  • Will the gloves be required to offer protection from heat or cold temperatures? Insulated gloves should be selected to protect from extreme temperatures;
  • Will the worker be wearing the gloves for a few minutes at a time or all day? Comfort is important for longer wear.

Several types of gloves are available, following are a few examples:

  • Electrical insulation gloves are designed to protect employees when working with exposed energized conductors;
  • Leather gloves are designed for welding or for other general purposes; 
  • Cut-resistant gloves, depending on the level of hazard and the type of work environment, include stainless steel mesh, kevlar fabric, and other materials for lighter weight cut resistance; and
  • Chemical resistant gloves are made from many different materials and include different cuffs, lengths and thicknesses. Heat/cold resistant gloves carry many general purposes and will provide heat/cold protection.

View/Download Hand Protection Tool Box Talk (PDF)

May has been designated Hand Protection Month. The SCSA's Safety Advisors will be distributing 500 pairs of cut resistant safety gloves to a select number of construction companies through a partnership with WorkSafe Saskatchewan.

Saskatchewan WCB AGM and 2018 Annual Report

Apr
29

The Saskatchewan Workers' Compensation Board (WCB) has released its 2019 AGM dates in Regina and Saskatoon as well as its 2018 Annual Report. 

Sask WCB 2019 Annual General Meetings will be:

  • Wednesday, May 1, Regina at Queensbury Centre (Salon 3)
  • Thursday, May 2, Saskatoon at Prairieland Park (Terrace Room)
  • Webinar starting live on May 1 at 9:00 a.m. Registration is required.

For a detailed agenda and other information on the AGM, visit www.wcbsask.com/agm2019/

View the Sask WCB 2018 Annual Report

To view all other Sask WCB corporate plans and reports, visit: www.wcbsask.com/about-wcb/what-we-do/corporate-plans-annual-reports/

Saskatchewan WCB Board Chair Announces new Chief Executive Officer

Apr
26

The Saskatchewan Workers' Compensation Board (WCB) recently announced that Phil Germain, their VP of Prevention and Employer Services, has been appointed as the new CEO of the Sask WCB and will officially take on CEO duties on May 31, 2019. Read the full update from WCB Chairperson, Gord Dobrowolsky, below:

Following the retirement announcement of Peter Federko, the WCB Board has completed an exhaustive search for our new CEO and are pleased to announce that Phil Germain has been appointed to the role of Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of the Saskatchewan Workers’ Compensation Board.

Mr. Germain has been with the WCB for almost 15 years in leadership roles for the majority of his tenure.  Throughout his time here, he has proven his leadership abilities, demonstrated a life-long commitment to safety and prevention both locally and internationally, and has an in-depth knowledge of the compensation system at a global level. Added to that is his broad capacity and understanding of the Saskatchewan Workers’ Compensation Board. 

Mr. Germain holds a Bachelor of Science Degree from the University of Alberta and a professional designation from the Canadian Registered Safety Professional. His successful career path as a health and safety professional, manager and executive have positioned him with extensive abilities to lead our organization. 

After moving to Saskatchewan in 1995 to work for the Saskatchewan Construction Safety Association, Mr. Germain rose in his safety career from his start as the Manager of the Agricultural Manufacturers of Canada Safety Program in 1998, Executive Director of Prevention at the Saskatchewan WCB in 2005 and Vice-President of Prevention and Employer Services in 2012.  In 2014, he was awarded Saskatchewan Safety Professional of the Year.

Mr. Federko will continue to serve as CEO until his official retirement date of May 31st, at which time Mr. Germain will officially take on the duties of CEO.  As a Board we want to again express our deepest appreciation to Mr. Federko for the dedication, enthusiasm and the motivation he has given the WCB over the past 25 years.

We look forward to what the future holds under our new CEO as the WCB continues to direct the Saskatchewan compensation system and meet the needs of our customers throughout the province.  Please join me in congratulating Mr. Germain in his new appointment as CEO.

Gord Dobrowolsky, Chairperson
Board of Directors
Saskatchewan Workers’ Compensation Board

INDUSTRY LEADERS GATHER FOR CONSTRUCTING SAFETY LEADERSHIP CONFERENCE

Apr
25

The second annual SCSA Constructing Safety Leadership Conference, held in conjunction with Sask Construction Week, attracted over 100 industry leaders who gathered at TCU Place in Saskatoon on April 10, 2019.

Thomas Benjoe CEO, FHQ Developments and Bradyn Parisian Owner, Mo’Solar kicked off the day with a session on Safety, Business Culture and Inclusion. This was followed by an industry panel on Safety in Procurement featuring Grant Ring Vice President, SaskPower; Harlan Kennedy Executive Director, Ministry of Central Services; and Jeremy Meinema, Finance & Land Manager, City of Saskatoon, Residential Land Corp. The morning concluded with a session on Emerging Legal Trends with Amy Groothuis Partner, Miller Thompson in conversation with SCSA president, Collin Pullar.

The afternoon featured John Spooner Sr. Vice President, Aon Reed Stenhouse Inc presenting on Contract Surety and Insurance and a General Contractor Panel Discussion with Aaron Yohnke District Manager, PCL Construction and Tom Holfeld District Manager, Graham Construction.

Well-known local radio hosts Jamie Nye of the Green Zone, and Mark Loshack (Shack) of Rock 102, were the MCs and moderators throughout the day, which also featured leadership reflections from guest speakers Bill Chow, president of the SJHL, and Drew Remenda, Sportsnet’s Game Analyst for the Edmonton Oilers and former San Jose Sharks Assistant Coach.

Attendees participated in numerous discussions and networking opportunities throughout the conference and also had a chance to experience the SCSA’s newly-launched Hazard ID VR training tool on location.  

The conference concluded with a special ceremony recognizing the 2019 SCSA’s Health and Safety Administrator (HSA) of the Year Award recipient, Vanessa Andres of Triple A Directional Drilling; and the National Construction Safety Officer (NCSO™) of the Year Award recipient, Jessica Stewart of Alliance Energy Ltd.

WCB releases 2018 operating results

Apr
16

The Saskatchewan Workers' Compensation Board's (WCB) 2018 Annual Report was tabled at the provincial legislature on April 16, 2019. Read the full media release, below:

News Release
For Immediate Release
April 16, 2019


WCB releases 2018 operating results

  • WCB remains fully funded at 115.2 per cent
  • Workplace Total injury rate increases to 5.44 per 100 workers
  • Time Loss injury rate increases to 1.99 per 100 workers
  • 88 per cent of Saskatchewan employers achieved Mission: Zero

REGINA, SK – The Saskatchewan Workers’ Compensation Board’s 2018 Annual Report was tabled in the provincial legislature today. WCB Chairperson Gord Dobrowolsky said the WCB remains fully funded with the ability to cover the future costs of all claims in the system.

“As our labour force has grown over the past decade, workplace safety becomes more and more vital for Saskatchewan as we realize our economic growth potential,” said Dobrowolsky. “It remains important for us to keep a solid funding position to ensure benefits and programs to cover workers who are injured at work. As well, employers can be sure that they will be protected from lawsuits and that they will continue to have an effective, efficient compensation system.”

The WCB’s 2018 results include:

  • The WCB’s Injury Fund is at $399.8 million as of year-end 2018 compared to $555.0 million in 2017. The WCB remains fully funded at 115.2 per cent.
  • Claims costs increased from $230.2 million in 2017 to $278.2 million in 2018. The benefits liabilities increased by $52.5 million or 4.3 per cent in 2018 to $1,280.9 million, mainly due to increased expected health care costs from increasing treatment and utilization levels, an increase in mental health claims and the continuing pattern of claims staying in the system longer.
  • Two primary drivers of compensation costs paid are the duration and number of Time Loss claims. The average duration of Time Loss claims increased to 41.89 days in 2018 compared to 40.16 days in 2017. The WCB accepted 8,151 Time Loss claims in 2018, up from 7,888 claims accepted in 2017.
  • The workplace Total injury rate in 2018 increased to 5.44 per 100 workers, compared to 5.25 per 100 workers in 2017.
  • The average premium rate for 2018 dropped to $1.19, down from $1.24 in 2017. This is the third lowest in Canada.
  • The WCB has premium revenue of $256.5 million in 2018 (up from $255.2 million in 2017) and investment loss of $41.6 million in 2018 (compared to income of $175.8 million in 2017).
  • The WCB covered 410,600 full-time equivalent (FTE) workers in 2018 compared to 423,527 FTE workers in 2017.

The past year also marked the third year in a row that 88 per cent of Saskatchewan employers achieved Mission: Zero – zero injuries, zero fatalities, zero suffering.

The workplace Total injury rate per 100 workers increased from 5.25 per 100 workers in 2017 to 5.44 per 100 workers in 2018.

“Despite a slight increase in 2018 workplace injury rates, 88 per cent of employers achieved Mission: Zero for the third year in a row. This wouldn’t have been possible without the health, safety and prevention efforts of people around the province. To me, this shows how much workers, employers and provincial leaders can accomplish when we work together on workplace safety,” said CEO Peter Federko. “However, 22,371 workers were injured in Saskatchewan workplaces in 2018. This demonstrates that we still have work to do. We can’t accomplish this alone. Only together can we make all Saskatchewan workplaces safe.”

The 2018 Saskatchewan Time Loss injury rate increased to 1.99 per 100 workers compared to 1.86 per 100 workers in 2017. The 2017 Time Loss injury rate stayed consistent with the Saskatchewan 2016 rate of 1.86 per 100 workers. At that time, WorkSafe Saskatchewan cautioned that injury rates might increase in 2018, which they have.

“Sadly, we lost 48 individuals in workplace fatalities last year – 20 from occupational disease and 28 from traumatic events,” said Federko. “Evidence from the International Social Security Association indicates that a focus on serious injuries and fatalities should improve the overall level of safety in the province. We will continue to focus on our serious injury and fatality initiative as a top priority in 2019.”

The WCB will provide details of its 2018 performance at the AGM scheduled for Regina on May 1 and Saskatoon on May 2.

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Media Contact:

Carolyn Van der Veen - WCB Director, Communications
cvanderveen@wcbsask.com

 

The Saskatchewan Workers’ Compensation Board is a provincial statutory agency governed by a Board of Directors and is funded by employers. Saskatchewan’s workers’ compensation system was adopted in 1930. At that time, the Workmen’s Compensation Act made into law what is known as the historic compromise: employers became collectively liable for workers’ compensation costs and, in return, workers waived their right to sue for work injury. Visit www.wcbsask.com for more detail on rate setting and other WCB initiatives.

Mission: Zero is an initiative to eliminate workplace injuries in Saskatchewan. Launched at the WCB’s 2008 Annual General Meeting, the Mission: Zero campaign and programs drive home the impact of work injuries and the importance of workplace safety and injury prevention. The intent behind Mission: Zero is to bring about faster and deeper reductions to the provincial workplace injury rate.

SCSA Named 2019 Paragon Award Finalist

Apr
5

The SCSA was honoured to be recognized as a 2019 Regina & District Chamber of Commerce (R&DCC) Paragon Award finalist in the category of Customer Service Excellence.

It is recognized that, as an industry, progress has been made in reducing injuries/incidents. Recently; however, there has been a flattening of that progress and, in some areas, a disturbing trend is emerging. Telling people how to stay safe isn’t enough to overhaul a culture that has traditionally not valued safety; the SCSA believes that developing leaders who understand why safety is important will.

When employees lead, it sets a powerful example for the business owners, construction workforce, safety organizations, purchasers of construction services, and the general public with whom the organization interacts on a daily basis. The main goals and objectives of developing and maintaining a high level of customer service are closely tied to the SCSA’s business priorities. Member engagement at a level sufficient to effect a behavioural change in attitude toward injury prevention and safety - to transform culture - requires an extraordinary level of customer service.

Some of the reasons for the SCSA’s commitment to superior customer service are that it creates an engaged workforce, fosters a positive work environment, increases member engagement; and the organization is viewed as an employer of choice, a trusted source of information, and business leader in the community.

An outstanding customer service culture based on the association’s values of trust, respect, accountability and integrity creates an engaged workforce and a positive work environment (internal benefits) which translates to increased member engagement and raises the profile of the association as an employer and business of choice (external benefits).

Continually raising the customer service bar upholds the quality of the SCSA programs and services, and in turn, upholds the reputation of the association as an organization that fosters business leadership throughout the province.

The R&DCC awards ceremony, proudly sponsored by the SCSA, took place on April 5, 2019 at the Delta hotel in Regina.  The SCSA would like to congratulate Wallnuts Expressive Catering for being awarded the 2019 Paragon Award for Customer Service Excellence and to all of the other winners and finalists for their contributions to the business community!


 

CONSTRUCTING SAFETY LEADERSHIP CELEBRATED AT 2019 SCSA AGM

Apr
3

The Saskatchewan Construction Safety Association (SCSA) proudly recognized several leaders for their outstanding contributions to the SCSA’s mission of Constructing Safety Leadership at a special awards ceremony held in conjunction with the SCSA’s Annual General Meeting (AGM) on March 21, 2019 at the Travelodge Hotel in Saskatoon.

Guest speaker, Peter Federko, CEO of the Saskatchewan Workers’ Compensation Board (WCB), opened the day with a presentation on the “Past, Present, and Future” state of injury claims associated with SCSA member companies (any company that pays WCB premiums under the “B” Building Construction WCB premium Rate Codes: B11 Construction Trades, B12 Residential Construction, and B13 Commercial, Industrial Construction).

Federko spoke about the business case for injury reduction and prevention, including the loss in performance and other inefficiencies companies experience as a result, which has been a major area of focus for the SCSA since its inception in 1995; helping companies become higher-performing with the implementation and maintenance of effective safety management systems. Federko also made mention of the slight increase in workplace injuries;  the workplace Total injury rate for 2018 was 5.44 per 100 workers, a 3.5 per cent increase from 2017. 

“Our industry has come a long way in terms of injury reduction and prevention over the years and we applaud the efforts of those who have made commitments to taking methodical steps toward safety,” said SCSA President, Collin Pullar.

“Seeing an uptick in injury rates over the past year is evidence that more needs to be done to ensure safety leadership is top of mind in our workplaces and communities – a challenge that drove the Association to redefine its mission to Constructing Safety Leadership and our vision to the Safest Construction Environment in Canada.

Formal AGM business that followed included adoption of reports and financials presented in the 2018 SCSA Annual Report and a motion to elect members to serve in into new positions 2019 Board of Directors (BOD), including the new Chair, Mark Novecosky of Flynn Group of Companies, and the new Vice-Chair, Keith Bird of RNF Ventures Ltd.

After the AGM portion of the day, the annual SCSA Constructing Safety Leadership Awards and the SCSA Board of Directors Years of Service Recognition ceremony took place to honour individuals, companies, and regional safety committees, for their dedication, outstanding contribution, and commitment to safety, leadership, and the SCSA’s mission of Constructing Safety Leadership and vision of the Safest Construction Environment in Canada.

Asiil Enterprises was the recipient of the 2018 Corporate Leadership in Safety Award, alongside finalists Safe & Sound Exteriors and Silverline Construction Ltd.

Corey Johnson of Flyer Electric Ltd. was the recipient of the 2018 Safety Practitioner Award, alongside finalists Jeff Cochrane of Asiil Enterprises Ltd, and Andrew Eilers of PCL Construction.

The Swift Current Regional Safety Committee (RSC) was the recipient of the 2018 RSC Distinguished Progress Award, alongside finalists from the Regina RSC and Prince Albert RSC. 

The ceremony concluded with Board of Directors Years of Service Recognition presentation. Errol Fisher of North Ridge Development Corporation who served on the board for seven years in various capacities, including Chairperson, received an award his years of service. Milayna Goruick also received a certificate of appreciation for her two years of service to the board, most recently holding the position as a Residential Director.

“We take great pride in honouring these professionals in our industry – their leadership has a measurable impact on business throughout the province by ensuring workers at all levels are thinking seriously about safety, reducing risks and ensuring folks go home safely at the end of the day,” added Pullar.

All award recipients will also be featured in the SCSA Safety Advocate publication and SaskBusiness magazine.

To see photos of all the 2018 Constructing Safety Leadership Award winners and Board of Directors Years of Service Recognition recipients, please visit: scsaonline.ca/safety-awards 

View a full recording of the 2019 AGM, including the 2018 Constructing Safety Leadership Awards and the 2018 Board of Directors Years of Service Recognition ceremony, can be viewed on the 'SCSA Online' YouTube channel!

2019 Constructing Safety Leadership Conference

Apr
2

The SCSA Constructing Safety Leadership Conference program is taking shape with two industry panels and a number of industry experts speaking on topics ranging from Construction Law, Financial Services, Labour Supply, to Safe Working Culture, Inclusion, and Productivity.

REGISTRATION IS NOW CLOSED

PANEL AND GUEST SPEAKER BIOS

Grant Ring
Vice President, Capital Projects and Procurement, SaskPower

Grant Ring was appointed Vice-President, Procurement and Supply Chain in June 2015. At SaskPower, Grant previously held the positions of Vice-President, Business Development; President and Chief Executive Officer of NorthPoint Energy Solutions; and acting Vice-President and Chief Financial Officer. Prior to that, he spent 11 years in various positions at the company. Grant holds a Master of Business Administration from Queen’s University and is a Chartered Professional Accountant (CPA). He was named a Fellow of the Society of Management Accountants in 2008. In 2007, he completed a Certificate in Executive Coaching, and in 2011, achieved his ICD.D designation from the Institute of Corporate Directors. He is the Chairman of the Power Corporation Superannuation Plan, and a member of the Buffalo Pound Water Board of Directors. In the past, Grant has also held positions as Chair of Financial Executives International Canada and Vice-Chair of the Public Employees Pension Plan (PEPP), as well as serving on other non-profit boards.

 

Harlan Kennedy
Executive Director, Project Management and Delivery, Saskatchewan Ministry of Central Services

Harlan is a Professional Engineer, Certified by PMI as a Project Management Professional in 1999.  He has been managing projects and project managers for over 40 years in the public, private and non-profit sectors.  As the Executive Director for Project Management and Delivery in the Saskatchewan Ministry of Central Services, he supports the work of 14 project managers in facility design and construction, and oversees construction procurement for the Ministry.  He also facilitates courses in project management through the University of Regina.  Harlan and his wife of 42 years live in Regina and have two grown daughters and three grandchildren..

 

Amy Groothuis
Partner, Miller Thomson LLP

Amy Groothuis is a civil litigator with a focus on labour and employment law. She acts for public and private sector employers, and provides proactive, preventive employment advice to clients on their rights and obligations regarding employment standards, occupational health and safety, human rights, and workers’ compensation. She represents management in all manners of labour relation disputes and grievances. Prior to joining Miller Thomson, Amy spent eight years practicing law in the Northwest Territories and Nunavut, both as General Counsel to the territorial workers’ compensation board, and in private practice, where she acted on behalf of management in a variety of settings and industries.

 

Aaron Yohnke
District Manager, PCL Construction Management Inc.

As district manager, Aaron is responsible for PCL Construction Management Inc. (Saskatoon) operations in Central and Northern Saskatchewan. For more than 15 years, Aaron has contributed to the success of construction teams and projects in Saskatchewan, Manitoba, Alberta, the Northwest Territories, and Ontario. He has experience in delivering traditional bid-build, design-build, P3, GMP, and CM-type agreements. Aaron brings a diversified background to his role, having previously held positions as estimator, project manager, special projects manager, construction manager, and operations manager. Aaron’s cross-sector experience covers such areas as health-care, commercial, institutional construction, civil infrastructure, pre-engineered buildings, retail, water treatment, interior renovation, and light industrial, and varies in scope from smaller, unique projects to mega developments. Aaron is Gold Seal certified in project management by the Canadian Construction Association. Born and raised in Saskatoon, Aaron is active in the community, participating in industry and charitable associations. Aaron is passionate about health, safety and the environment as well as generally augmenting the culture that exists across all projects and sites in Saskatchewan.  

 

Bill Chow
President, Saskatchewan Junior Hockey League (SJHL)

Born and raised in Prince Albert and worked with the Prince Albert Police Service for 29 years before retiring as the Administrative NCO. Bill was a scout in the Western Hockey League a number of years before accepting the president position with the SJHL in 2011.  He also served as the Hockey Canada Board -Chairman of Junior Hockey from 2013-2016. Bill is married with two adult children, three grandchildren.

 

Errol Fisher
Vice President of Operations, North Ridge Development Corporation

Errol has an extensive history in the construction industry that started with a summer job working as a carpenter’s helper for a Saskatoon framing company.  In 1981, Errol was inspired to start his own framing company which operated in Saskatoon and surrounding areas, Western Canada, The North West Territories and Korea.  Errol also operated a wood wall panel prefabrication plant in Vancouver. In 1997, Errol accepted an offer to work for North Ridge as a Site Supervisor and oversaw the construction of single-family homes, apartment-style condos and commercial buildings. He was quickly transitioned to the VP of Construction and then to his current position as the VP of Operations. Errol sits on a number of national, provincial and local boards. At the national level he chairs CHBA’s Professional Development Committee, and is one of the founding members of the Net Zero Council. Errol is also heavily involved in the Saskatoon and Region Home Builders’ Association Builder Committee and is the past Chair for the Saskatchewan Construction Safety Association. Most recently Errol was honoured as the CHBA 2017 Member of the Year due to his his long-standing contributions to CHBA through his dedication and outstanding service.

Thomas Benjoe
President & CEO for FHQ Developments

Thomas Benjoe is the President & CEO for FHQ Developments and is from the Muscowpetung First Nation. He has a First Nations Business, Economic Development and Governance background from First Nations University of Canada/University of Regina and is a Certified Professional Director.

Thomas is a founding Board of Director’s member for FHQ Developments and served 6 years on the Board. FHQ Developments is the Economic Development Corporation for the File Hill’s Qu’Appelle Tribal Council that manages Partnerships and new Business Ventures on behalf of its Limited Partners, the 11 First Nations of FHQTC. FHQ Developments also provides services to its Limited Partners through Nation Economic Development and Employment & Retention Services.

Thomas currently serves on a number of committees and boards including the Saskatchewan Chamber of Commerce, Innovation Saskatchewan, First Nations Power Authority, First Nations University of Canada Spring Celebration Powwow Committee, Member of Leaders Council at the Hill & Levene Schools of Business, University of Regina, Council for Entrepreneurship Growth (Economic Development Regina) and the FNUniv Aboriginal Youth Entrepreneurship Camp Steering Committee.

Braydn Parisian
Founder & CEO, Mo’ Solar Company Ltd

Bradyn Parisian is a well-respected business and community leader that resides in Regina, SK with his wife and three young children. He is also the President and principal consultant for Vincent Developments Inc., a management consulting company that serves a diverse group of clients across Saskatchewan.

Mr. Parisian is the Past President & Chairman of the Board for Conexus Credit Union; the largest credit union in SK (6th largest in Canada) with nearly $8 billion in assets under management. While sitting on the Conexus board, he gained experience serving on the Audit & Conduct Review, Governance & HR, Compensation and Risk Committees.  Bradyn currently serves as a corporate director on the boards of Cowessess Ventures Ltd., Black Lake Ventures LP, Gabriel Housing Corporation and the First Nations Power Authority.

A proud U of R graduate, Bradyn possesses MBA and Bachelor of Business Administration (Finance) degrees, and is an ICD.D holder.  He has also completed a professional certificate in corporate innovation & entrepreneurship from Stanford University, in addition to executive education programs at Rotman, Queen’s University, the Disney Institute and the Schulich School of Business.

He also serves as a sessional instructor at the University of Regina, and currently teaches business courses at the Paul J. Hill School of Business and First Nations University of Canada.  Mr. Parisian has also established several post-secondary scholarships for Métis students - aimed at supporting future leaders in the fields of business and healthcare.  In his spare time, Bradyn has also devoted a considerable amount of his time towards mentoring youth and coaching minor sports.

 

Tom Holfeld
District Manager, Graham Construction and Engineering Inc.

Born and raised in Yorkton, Tom began working in the construction industry during high school for his father at Logan Stevens Construction.  He started with Graham Construction after graduating from the University of Saskatchewan in 1990 with a degree in civil engineering.  Since then he has worked in various roles and construction sectors throughout Saskatchewan.  Originally hired for the Husky Upgrader Project in Lloydminster, Tom has performed the duties of project coordinator, estimator, project manager, operations manager, and his current position as district manager for Graham’s Saskatoon Buildings division.  Tom’s diverse experience includes working within commercial, civil, water and wastewater treatment, and industrial sectors for over 30 years.  He has served as Director on the Saskatoon Construction Association Board since 2014 and participates actively in industry affairs.  Tom feels strongly about the need for effective health and safety programs and changing the culture of safety within his company, and the industry as a whole. In this role he is responsible for the overall management of Graham’s  commercial and institutional sector business in Central and Northern Saskatchewan.  

John Spooner
Senior Vice President, Aon Reed Stenhouse

John is a Senior Vice-President, Account Executive with Aon Reed Stenhouse Inc. He started his career with Aon Reed Stenhouse in 1985 in our Regina office and has been located in our Saskatoon office since 1990. John has been extensively involved with many of Aon’s key clients including construction industry clients for both insurance and contract bonding. He provides day-to-day servicing, account management and consulting to various successful Saskatchewan-based contractors including General Contractors and large trade contractors, and is the Construction Segment Leader for the Branch.

Along with his construction industry expertise, John is involved with Manufacturing risks and Aviation risks including Canadian Airports Council program for Tier II Airports; Saskatoon and Regina International Airport. He also brings mining/industrial risk experience from prior years of direct involvement with PCS Inc., Cameco Corp., Cigar Lake Mining Corp., Areva and Kalium Chemicals. John is the Canadian liaison for Aon’s global Mosaic Corp. account team handling risk management issues ranging from taxation to Worker’s Compensation to Project Builders Risk.

Jeremy Meinema
Finance & Land Sales Manager, Saskatoon Land

Jeremy is a Chartered Professional Accountant with experience in public accounting, the mining industry, and municipal government.  For the last 8 years he has been the Finance and Sales Manager of Saskatoon Land, the land development arm of the City of Saskatoon, overseeing the accounting as well as policy development around the land development and sales process.  The City of Saskatoon operates one of the largest self-financed municipal land development programs in Canada and continues to play an integral role in providing an adequate supply of serviced land which initiates creativity and innovation in urban design, generating profits for allocation to civic projects and programs, and influence urban growth.

Rawlco Radio Personalities

Jamie Nye The Sports Guy

Saskatchewan’s most listened to sports show, The Green Zone with Jamie Nye is an afternoon drive sports show featuring a team of superstars, who aren’t afraid to share their opinions, and create a great listening experience every afternoon.

Jamie Nye The Sports Guy grew up in Saskatchewan, and knows almost everything about every sport you could possibly imagine. This award winning host/writer bleeds green through and through, and has an unmatched knowledge of the team; earning him respect within the CFL. Speaking on behalf of the fans, his delivery and perspective on the team is unfiltered, unbiased, and always honest. Jamie directs the conversation each day with his team around all the biggest sports stories and non-sports stories of the day, while ensuring each drive home is full of laughs and good times! There’s no better place to hang out after a long day of work than with The Green Zone! And if that isn’t enough, you can head over to the CFL.ca where Jamie is a regular contributor.

Mark Loshack (Shack)

Shack has been with Rawlco Radio for 28 years, 18 of those doing the morning show on Rock 102 in Saskatoon along with mid days on JACK 94.5 in Regina for the past couple years. He and his wife Mona have a 17 year old daughter whose name is Emily. Shack keeps himself busy with cooking. He loves to cook, so much so, that he has his own cooking show on Shaw tv called Cooked with Shack. His other interests are playing music, building and fixing stuff around the house and camping. Oh yeah and taking naps whenever he can.

Drew Remenda

Former NHL assistant coach and celebrated television and radio analyst Drew Remenda joined the NHL on Sportsnet broadcast team as the game analyst for the Edmonton Oilers in August 2014. Prior to signing on with Sportsnet, Remenda spent seven seasons as the television colour analyst for the San Jose Sharks broadcasts on Comcast SportsNet California.

With over 24 years of experience in the NHL and broadcasting, Remenda began his coaching career in 1988 when he served as the assistant coach for the University of Calgary for two seasons and contributed to Canada’s National Team and the Canadian Amateur Hockey Association. In 1991, Remenda joined the San Jose Sharks organization as an assistant coach and would go on to spend four seasons with the team. After seven years with the Sharks, Remenda headed north and signed on with CBC’s Hockey Night in Canada as an analyst for the 2006-07 season. In addition to his work in television, Remenda also hosted “The Drew Remenda Show” on News Talk 650 CKOM in his hometown of Saskatoon.

Proposed Amendments to OHS Regulations Survey

Apr
1

The Government of Saskatchewan is seeking input on proposed amendments to the Occupational Health and Safety Regulations, 1996 in the area of Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) as part of a larger interest in identifying areas for harmonization of key standards and with a goal of simplifying regulatory requirements for organizations that work across jurisdictions. In general, these proposals focus on common Canadian Standards Association (CSA) ratings.

While the SCSA is of the opinion that the impact is expected to affect manufacturers and suppliers of PPE, it recognizes that this will also likely impact member companies that work across multiple jurisdictions. The SCSA would like to understand the construction industry leadership perspective on this issue and know if these proposed amendments will have positive, negative or no impact on the businesses in the industry. The SCSA will reflect the perspectives of its membership in any recommendations on this matter. 

To help the SCSA in preparing its response to the Government of Saskatchewan on this issue, please consider participating in this brief seven-question survey. All feedback is welcome and much appreciated.

It’s Our Reality: Hazard ID VR Available

Mar
28

Media Release
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
March 28, 2019

It’s Our Reality: the Saskatchewan Construction Safety Association (SCSA) Announces First of Its Kind Hazard ID VR Available

REGINA, SK, March 28, 2019 – After months of planning, development and testing, the SCSA is proud to announce that the Hazard ID VR training tool developed in partnership with White Rabbit VR, a division of Twisted Pair Productions, is being made available to member companies through demonstrations and in the classroom. SCSA members and students now have the opportunity to be enveloped in a realistic, 360 degree alternate reality for workplace training. This training tool allows users to spot hazards more effectively and in a variety of scenarios that wouldn’t be as readily available within the confines of traditional classroom training. The Hazard ID VR is one of the first of its kind for the Saskatchewan construction industry.

“This changes the game for us in so far as building stronger impressions in learning. It gives the user experience in navigating dangerous situations and developing safety management systems in a safe way,” explains, Collin Pullar, president of the SCSA.

Pullar elaborates, “We have learned over the years that telling people how to stay safe isn’t enough to overhaul a culture that has historically struggled with safety; anything that is going to affect a change in an organization and a province has to be done at the leadership level. The sad reality is that 25% of the injury claims to WCB in our industry, involve a young worker under the age of 25 and the SCSA has a key role to play in supporting business owners and leaders in their injury prevention efforts for this demographic.”

Through the use of technology, modernizing product and service delivery has been a major strategic focus of the SCSA over the last year.  A new mobile Hazard Assessment Tool and ten additional safety topics were added to the SCSA’s Guide to Occupational Health and Safety (OHS) Legislation app, which has become a popular tool that has tracked more than 3,800 downloads since its launch in September of 2017. Inside the SCSA classrooms, projects introducing tablet devices and virtual reality (VR) training tools are taking the delivery of safety training and information retention to a whole new level.

"The secret of the success of Hazard ID VR has been the partnership business model between White Rabbit VR and SCSA. We know virtual reality. SCSA knows safety. Together, we’ve created a marketable, state-of-the-art training tool that will help improve safety training, not only for SCSA, but for construction companies and training institutions across Saskatchewan and Canada," said Mike MacNaughton, president and CEO of Twisted Pair/White Rabbit VR.

To mark the release of the SCSA’s Hazard Identification Virtual Reality Tool, the SCSA has partnered with the Saskatoon Industry-Education Council (SIEC) for a live demonstration with students on Tuesday, April 9th, 2019 at 2:00 pm at Walter Murray Collegiate in Saskatoon (1905 Preston Ave S). MEDIA ARE INVITED TO ATTEND THIS EVENT.

About the Saskatchewan Construction Safety Association

The Saskatchewan Construction Safety Association (SCSA) is an industry-funded, membership-based, non-profit organization that provides cost-effective, accessible safety training and advice to employers and employees in the construction industry throughout the province to reduce the human and financial losses associated with injuries. Registered March 22, 1995 the SCSA is, and has been since inception, committed to injury prevention. Serving almost 10,000 member companies, the major business units of the association are Advisory Services, Business Development, Corporate Services, Program Services and Training Services. 

About White Rabbit VR, a division of Twisted Pair Productions

White Rabbit VR is a Regina-based enterprise offering a full range of virtual reality solutions including museum displays, tourism videos and training applications. Its parent company, Twisted Pair Productions, has over 25 years of experience in media production and launched the VR division in 2016.

About the Saskatoon Industry-Education Council

The Saskatoon Industry-Education Council is a bridge between Saskatchewan’s career opportunities and Saskatoon area youth. Through a partnership among business, secondary and post-secondary schools, unique hands-on career exploration events and programs are designed and delivered to students, helping them find a career that connects their passion and natural talents with current and future workforce needs.

For more information, or to arrange for an interview with Collin Pullar, please contact:

Terri Larsen
Marketing Coordinator

Saskatchewan Construction Safety Association
terril@scsaonline.ca
306.525.0175 ext. 232

2019 Safe Worker and Safe Employer Awards presented

Mar
25

2019 Safe Worker and Safe Employer Awards presented

Saskatoon, SK: Today, WorkSafe Saskatchewan presented the 2019 Safe Worker and Safe Employer Awards in Saskatoon as part of the Saskatchewan Workers’ Compensation Board’s annual Compensation Institute.

2019 Safe Worker Award

WorkSafe Saskatchewan presents the Safe Worker award to a worker who goes beyond the expectations of their position to help create a safer workplace.

The 2019 WorkSafe Saskatchewan Safe Worker award winner is Darrell Wingerak of BASF Agriculture Specialities Ltd. in Saskatoon.

Darrell Wingerak is a safety leader and role model on the BASF worksite. In addition to co-chairing the OH&S Committee, Darrell has made a number of recommendations to minimize injuries on the worksite. These include improving the mezzanine railing system, identifying visual hazards from glare, correcting damaged door sweeps, tool storage, improving housekeeping and adding bump protection to site fume hoods. Most recently, he brought in a new tool to ensure that injection needles remain sharp and developed a process to sharpen the needle, reducing ergonomic strain on employees.

Darrell also revolutionized BASF’s Exposure Reduction Program – a worker-based program that helps workers coach each other on safety behavior. Darrell trains all new observers in this process and tracks their results to present to them at Site Safety Meetings. He has also encouraged others to be safety leaders on the worksite through the introduction of a program where workers can submit ideas to improve safety.

The two finalists for the 2019 Safe Worker Award are Dianne Addley of Canada Post in Saskatoon and Andy McGhee of Reliance Gregg’s Home Service in Saskatoon.

2019 Safe Employer Award

The 2019 Safe Employer winner is Namerind Housing Corporation in Regina.

Namerind Housing Corporation is one of the first non-profit housing corporations in Saskatchewan to develop a safety management system. Namerind’s employees are committed to developing and implementing hazard identification processes. In addition to training workers, supervisors and managers on their roles and responsibilities, Namerind has created a Job Hazard Analysis for high and medium risks jobs for both field and office staff and introduced Field Level Hazard Assessments and Supervisor Check-ins.

Contractors working for Namerind are provided with the necessary training for the jobsite and are assisted in building their own safety program or adopting Namerind’s. Namerind’s supervisors monitor contractors similar to staff to ensure Namerind’s safety processes are being adhered to. As one of the first organizations in Regina to adopt the Crime Free Communities program, Namerind works with the City Police, Mayor’s Office, contractors, staff and tenants to address workplace and community safety concerns.

The two finalists for the 2019 Safe Employer Award are Walker Projects Inc. in Regina and Park Derochie Coatings (Sask) Inc. in Saskatoon.

Fast facts:

WorkSafe Saskatchewan has presented the Safe Worker Award annually since 2006.

WorkSafe Saskatchewan founded the Safe Employer Award in 2007 to honour an employer who shows leadership in health and safety beyond the requirements of the industry and legislation.

Workplace peers and colleagues nominate the recipients of these awards. Two committees representing WorkSafe Saskatchewan, the Saskatchewan Federation of Labour, the Saskatchewan Safety Council and the Canadian Society of Safety Engineers adjudicate the nominations.

A video profiling each of the 2019 nominees is available on the WorkSafe website at worksafesask.ca/resources/awards/.

A complete list of committee members and past winners is available on the WorkSafe website at worksafesask.ca/safe-worker and www.worksafesask.ca/safe-employer.

WorkSafe Saskatchewan is a partnership between the Saskatchewan Workers’ Compensation Board and the Ministry of Labour Relations and Workplace Safety.

In 2018, 88 per cent of Saskatchewan employers achieved Mission: Zero.

-30-

For more information, please contact:

Jennifer Pilsner
Senior Marketing Manager
Saskatchewan Workers’ Compensation Board
Phone: 306.787.4651
Cell: 306.519.4220
jpilsner@wcbsask.com

SCSA and Saskatchewan Polytechnic Partnership Increases NCSO Exam Opportunities

Mar
25
The Saskatchewan Construction Safety Association (SCSA) is excited to announce a new partnership with Saskatchewan Polytechnic to offer increased National Construction Safety Officer (NCSO™) exam opportunities in more locations throughout the province to NCSO registrants looking to complete their certification.
 
Effective March 25, 2019, a new registration and administration process will allow all NCSO exams to be scheduled directly through the Saskatchewan Polytechnic's online registration service and taken at one of the Saskatchewan Polytechnic testing centres, located in Regina, Saskatoon, Moose Jaw and Prince Albert.
 
Note: It is strongly recommended that NCSO exam candidates confirm their eligibility to write the exam with the SCSA Program Services department prior to registration.
 
View the NCSO Exam Prep Guide for detailed registration and exam information.
 
For more information, please visit the NCSO Program webpage

Thank-You to our Award Sponsors!

Mar
20

The SCSA would like to extend a very special thank-you to Flynn Group of Companies for sponsoring the SCSA's 2019 Health and Safety Administrator (HSA) of the Year Award, and to Graham Construction, for sponsoring the 2019 National Construction Safety Officer (NCSO™) of the Year Award. By shining a spotlight on these individuals, the SCSA and the sponsoring companies are able to share the successes of these safety advocates with other industry leaders and celebrate their efforts in advancing the SCSA's mission of Constructing Safety Leadership and vision of the Safest Construction Environment in Canada.

Every year, SCSA is proud to honour individuals, companies, and committees, for their commitment to promoting effective health and safety management systems in the residential, commercial, and industrial building construction industry in Saskatchewan. This year's HSA and NCSO of the Year awards will be presented at the SCSA's annual Constructing Safety Leadership Conference on April 10th at TCU Place in Saskatoon.  For more information on the conference, or to purchase tickets, please visit: www.scsaonline.ca/events 

For more information on Flynn Group of Companies, please visit: www.flynncompanies.com

For more information on Graham Construction, please visit: www.grahambuilds.com

SCSA Safety Messages Reach More Saskatchewan Communities

Mar
20

The Saskatchewan Construction Safety Association (SCSA) is excited to announce that its messages around constructing safety leadership are reaching more communities throughout the province in Cree, Dene, and English, over the Missinipi Broadcasting Corporation (MBC) Radio Network.

The MBC Radio Network is a vital communication medium in Saskatchewan that serves approximately 80 communities and 140,000 daily listeners ages 15 and over. It also boasts the largest adult-listening audience of any radio station covering Northern Saskatchewan and approximately 75 per cent of total listeners are Indigenous residents. 

“Raising awareness on the importance of injury reduction and prevention in all of our communities is hugely important to us as a safety association,” says SCSA President, Collin Pullar.

“Whether listeners are purchasers of construction services, newly entering the workforce, well-established in their trade, or looking to improve their business – we have important safety messages we want to convey that can bring us closer to our vision of the Safest Construction Environment in Canada.”

The SCSA began its radio broadcasts in March of 2019, which features a sponsorship of the 1 o’clock MBC News as well as daily news spots in Cree, Dene, and English. The Dene spots air on Fridays between 11 and noon in Dene communities, which includes all of the Athabasca and Mid-West regions in the province. The Cree spots run every Thursday between 11 and noon during the network-wide Cree Language programming. English spots also run during the daily 1 o’clock news in English and additionally on weekends.

MBC Radio Network covers all major centres in the province, including Saskatoon, Regina, Yorkton, Prince Albert, North Battleford, Creighton, and Meadow Lake. It also provides programming to many smaller communities, including virtually 100 per cent of all First Nations and Métis communities, municipalities, and mine sites throughout Northern Saskatchewan. Many of these communities have Cree, Dene, or Métis populations. MBC's Cree and Dene programming is nationally-recognized as leading the field in Indigenous communications and has been shared with audiences as far away as the Northwest Territories, Alberta, BC, and Ontario.

The SCSA MBC Radio Spots in Cree, Dene, and English can be heard on the 'SCSA Online' YouTube channel.

To listen to the MBC Radio Network, tune in to CJLR-FM, or visit their live online stream:  www.listen.streamon.fm/cjlr

For more information on MBC, visit: https://www.mbcradio.com

Saskatchewan’s 2018 workplace Total Injury rate increases slightly

Mar
14

The Saskatchewan Workers' Compensation Board (WCB) released its 2018 injury rates today, March 14, 2019. The workplace Total injury rate for 2018 was 5.44 per 100 workers, a 3.5 per cent increase from 2017. 

“Our province has come a long way in terms of injury reduction and prevention over the years and we applaud the efforts of those who have made formal and informal commitments to taking methodical steps toward safety,” said SCSA President, Collin Pullar.

“Seeing an uptick in injury rates over the past year is evidence that more needs to be done to ensure safety leadership is top of mind in our workplaces and communities – a focus that drove our association to redefine its mission to Constructing Safety Leadership and our vision to create the Safest Construction Environment in Canada,” added Pullar.

Read the full news release from WCB, below:


NEWS RELEASE
For Immediate Release
March 14, 2019
SASKATCHEWAN's 2018 WORKPLACE TOTAL INJURY RATE INCREASES SLIGHTLY
Total injury rate increases by 3.62%, while Time Loss injury rate increases by 6.99%

 

  • 2018 Total injury rate was 5.44 per 100 workers
  • Time Loss injury rate was 1.99 per 100 workers
  • 22 rate codes (44.90% of rate codes) had a lower Total injury rate than in 2017
  • 88% of Saskatchewan employers achieved zero injuries
REGINA, SK – The Saskatchewan Workers’ Compensation Board released its 2018 injury rates today. The workplace Total injury rate for 2018 was 5.44 per 100 workers, a 3.6 per cent increase from 2017.

“While we are seeing a slight increase in 2018 injury rates, thanks to the health, safety and prevention efforts of people around the province, 88 per cent of Saskatchewan employers achieved Mission: Zero – zero injuries, zero fatalities and zero suffering,” said Phil Germain, Vice-President of Prevention and Employer Services at the WCB. “Approximately 45 per cent of WCB rate codes had lower Total injury rates in 2018 compared to 2017. However, the remaining 55 per cent had higher Total injury rates in 2018. Also this past year, the Time Loss injury rate increased to 1.99 per 100 workers compared to 1.86 per 100 workers in 2017.”
 
The Saskatchewan Time Loss injury rate did not decrease in 2017 and stayed consistent with the Saskatchewan 2016 rate of 1.86 per 100 workers. At that time, WorkSafe Saskatchewan cautioned that injury rates might increase in 2018, which they have.
 
“This is a development we must address immediately and it will mean working together to ensure our workplaces remain safe,” said Germain. “All of us from individuals to organizations to leadership need to take part in ensuring our injury rates do not increase further.”

In 2018:

 

  • Total claims accepted increased from 22,247 in 2017 to 22,371 in 2018. Total number of workers covered decreased slightly from 423,527 workers in 2017 to 410,600 workers in 2018.
  • Accepted No Time Loss claims decreased from 14,342 in 2017 to 14,192 in 2018.
  • The 2018 Time Loss injury rate increased to 1.99 per 100 workers, a 7.0 per cent increase from 2017. Accepted Time Loss claims increased from 7,888 in 2017 to 8,151 in 2018.
“The increase in both the Total injury rate and the Time Loss injury rate in 2018 may indicate these rates could increase in 2019 as well. We need to keep working together to take action on safety for ourselves and our co-workers,” said Germain.
 
Most alarming in 2018 is the number of fatalities. There were 48 fatalities in 2018, an increase of 78 per cent from 2017. Over the past 15 years, the WCB has seen an average of 37 workplace fatalities per year. In 2017, the WCB saw the lowest number in the past 15 years at 27.
 
“This is devastating for our province. Behind every statistic is a loved one who will never come home to their family. The impact of losing someone dear to us is devastating,” said WCB CEO Peter Federko. “We’ve embarked on several research projects with the University of Regina and the University of Saskatchewan to understand more about our workplace fatalities.”
There is evidence from the International Social Security Association that serious injury and fatality prevention increases the overall level of safety in a workplace.
 
In 2018, the WCB developed a serious injury definition. This analysis revealed that for the 2015 - 2017 period, approximately 2,400 injuries met the serious injury definition each year. Serious injuries represented approximately 10 per cent of all injuries and 75 per cent of compensation days paid in 2017 for claims registered in 2017.

“Focusing on serious injuries and fatalities could get us closer to Mission: Zero,” said Federko. “We will continue to make this a top priority in 2019 as part of our serious injury and fatality initiative.”
 
The top causes of fatalities in 2018 were from occupational diseases and motor vehicle collisions. WorkSafe Saskatchewan, the WCB’s partnership with the Ministry of Labour Relations and Workplace Safety, launched several resources and campaigns in 2018 targeting the highest causes of workplace injuries and deaths.
 
WorkSafe offers resources, awareness campaigns, education, training, and targeted initiatives to help eliminate workplace injuries and fatalities. Last year, the WCB signed a data sharing agreement with SGI to help determine the causes of motor vehicle crashes.
 
“Keeping our workplaces safe is a shared responsibility,” said WCB Chairperson Gord Dobrowolsky. “We can only achieve Mission: Zero when everyone works together. We will keep working with employers, workers and partners until we achieve zero injuries and zero fatalities.”

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Media Contact:
Carolyn Van der Veen - WCB Director, Communications
306.787.4386
1.800.667.7590 ext. 4386
cvanderveen@wcbsask.com
 
WorkSafe Saskatchewan is an injury prevention and workplace safety partnership between the WCB and the Ministry of Labour Relations and Workplace Safety. Through the partnership, both agencies offer programs and support that help employers and workers develop workplace health and safety programs. Visit www.worksafesask.ca to learn more about preventing workplace fatalities or phone 1.800.667.7590.
 
Mission: Zero is an initiative to eliminate all injuries in Saskatchewan. Launched in 2008, the Mission: Zero campaign and programs drive home the effects of injuries and the importance of safety and injury prevention at home, work and play. The intent behind Mission: Zero is to bring about a significant reduction in the provincial injury rate.
 

The SCSA Has Been Named a 2018 All Star Award Winner

Mar
14

The SCSA has been named a 2018 All Star Award winner by Constant Contact, an Endurance International Group company and a leader in small business marketing solutions. The annual award recognizes the most successful 10 percent of Constant Contact’s customer base, based on their significant achievements using email marketing to engage their customer base and drive results for their organization during the prior year.

“We’re happy to be recognized by Constant Contact for achieving strong marketing results and engaging with our members, leaders in the construction industry and injury prevention partners. Constant Contact’s tools have helped us gain open rates that are five and six times higher than the industry average,” explains Ed Pyle, SCSA’s Business Development Manager.

“Constant Contact’s primary goal is to fuel small business success. We know it’s not an easy road for small business owners, which is why we work to provide easy and affordable marketing tools and advice that can elevate their customer engagement and awareness to new levels,” said Holli Scott, Vice President of Customer Success. “The campaigns created by this year’s All Stars demonstrate that a business, regardless of its size, can accomplish their marketing goals and we celebrate the SCSA’s impressive achievements with this All Star Award.”

Governance Committee Updates

Mar
6

The governance commitee would like to provide an update to members on the SCSA Governance Committee Page regarding nominations to Board positions to be ratified at the Annual General Meeting. 

SCSA 2018 Financial Statements

Mar
6

In advance of our 2019 Annual General meeting, the Saskatchewan Construction Safety Association (SCSA) 2018 financial statements are available at this link.

Safety Auditor Re-Certification Training Now Online

Feb
25

As of February 25, 2019, the SCSA will be offering Safety Auditor Re-Certification Training online. The former classroom course will now be offered exclusively online to ensure members can conveniently schedule and access this self-paced training from anywhere in the province. All currently certified SCSA Auditors are eligible to enrol. Safety Auditor Re-Certification Training is required every three years. 

For more information and to register, please visit: www.scsaonline.ca/courses/online-training/safety-auditor-re-certification-training 

For more information on the status of your Safety Auditor Certification, please email scsainfo@scsaonline.ca or contact your nearest SCSA office.  

SCSA Safety Advisors Perform Safety Demos for Students in the Trades

Feb
14

SCSA Safety Advisors will be performing safety demos for the several months at the Regina Trades and Skills Centre for students in the Commercial/Industrial Roofing, Electrical, and High School Carpentry Apprenticeship Program (HCAP) training programs. 

       

 

Good. Better. Best. The Saskatchewan Construction Safety Association makes the Top Employers List

Feb
13

Media Release
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
February 13, 2019

Good. Better. Best. The Saskatchewan Construction Safety Association makes the Top Employers List

REGINA, SK, February 13, 2019 – First published in 2006, Saskatchewan's Top Employers is an annual competition organized by the editors of Canada's Top 100 Employers. This special designation recognizes the Saskatchewan employers that lead their industries in offering exceptional places to work. From high-technology to mining, traditional public services, and non-profits, the companies and organizations that made the 2019 list of Saskatchewan’s Top Employers are as diverse as the province’s people and the Saskatchewan Construction Safety Association (SCSA) is proud to announce that it has made this year’s list.

SCSA President, Collin Pullar, explains, “We knew in November that we had been shortlisted for the Canada’s Top Employer list but were asked to keep that under wraps until the provincial list had been officially released”, Pullar goes on to say, “At the SCSA, we often talk about a baseline for safety, as set out by legislation, and we pride ourselves in encouraging our members to adopt a ‘good, better, best’ approach to their safety management systems . . .  always striving to adopt better and best practices. Some examples of the things that the selection committee viewed as our ‘better’ and ‘best’ HR policies related to work-life balance through things like earned days off; paid training and professional development opportunities; benefits including matching employee RRSP contributions; and formal and informal staff social activities like the Employee Spring Conference, Employee Service Awards, and fully funded social committee.”

Although Saskatchewan's unemployment rate is the fourth-lowest in the country, its employers have been at the forefront in offering progressive HR benefits and workplace policies that Canadians now expect from the best employers. Among this year's winners is a 'catalogue of best practices' when it comes to the kinds of benefits that make an employer truly exceptional.

“Reviewing the 2019 list of Saskatchewan’s top employers, I must say that it is an honour to have our name listed with a number of the businesses and organizations that we have partnered with over the last year to help us achieve our vision of the safest construction environment in Canada and our mission of constructing safety leadership in Saskatchewan. Congratulations to all of the businesses that made this year’s list and a special thanks to the SCSA Leadership Team and Board, for recognizing the value of investing in our greatest asset . . . our people,” says Pullar

The Saskatchewan Construction Safety Association (SCSA) is an industry-funded, membership-based, non-profit organization that provides cost-effective, accessible safety training and advice to employers and employees in the construction industry throughout the province to reduce the human and financial losses associated with injuries. Registered March 20, 1995, the SCSA is, and has been since its inception, committed to injury prevention. Serving almost 10,000 member companies, the major business units of the association are Advisory Services, Business Development, Corporate Services, Program Services and Training. 

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For more information, please contact:

Terri Larsen
Marketing Coordinator

Saskatchewan Construction Safety Association
terril@scsaonline.ca
306.525.0175 ext. 232

SCSA Recognized for Supporting Reservists

Feb
11

The Saskatchewan Construction Safety Association (SCSA) kick-started 2019 with special recognition from the Canadian Forces Liaison Council (CFLC) for demonstrating exceptional support for Reservist employees.

“The SCSA is honoured to support the efforts of employees who help to ensure the safety of the people in our country and other countries abroad,” said SCSA Advisory Services Manager, Loy Levesque.

On January 23, 2019, the CFLC held a special ceremony in conjunction with the Regina and District Chamber of Commerce, to highlight the outstanding support of employers to the Canadian Armed Forces; specifically the Reserve Force.

“The Reserve Force is mandated to grow under Canada’s defence policy and without the support of employers like the SCSA in communities across Canada we would not be able to sustain that growth. Your support allows reservists to keep one foot firmly planted in a civilian career and the other training and preparing to protect Canadians,” said Major-General Paul Bury, Chief Reserves and Employer Support.

The Honourable Vaughn Solomon Schofield, Lieutenant Governor of Saskatchewan and Major-General Bury presented the SCSA with a Certificate of Appreciation, which was accepted by Levesque alongside SCSA Safety Advisor and Reservist, Cpl. Justin Brooks.

Brooks was granted an eight-week leave of absence to partake in the Developmental Period 1 (DP1) infantry training program that was based in Regina in the summer of 2017. This training develops the skills and knowledge required for entry-level employment and further training in the Canadian Armed Forces.

According to the CFLC, it’s important to highlight the support of employers and educators in allowing Reservist employees and students to take a leave of absence for military service; allowing them to balance civilian careers, families, education, and a military career. It also prepares Reservists with the proper training required to ensure families and communities are safe during emergency situations, such as fires, floods, and ice storms.

Reservists acquire a range of skills through military service that are valuable to the civilian workplace. Leadership, reliability, strong communications skills, and teamwork, are a few of the professional attributes that are reflected in an ethos of ethics and hard work. By supporting the Reserve Force, employers, educational institutions, and communities share the benefits of ongoing professional development as Reservists progress throughout their military career.

“We are thankful to those who serve our country and will continue to stand as an employer in support of the values, training, and service of the Canadian Forces,” added Levesque.

           

Photo on Left: (L-R): SCSA Safety Advisor, Cpl. Justin Brooks; Advisory Services Manager, Loy Levesque           

Photo on Right: (L-R): SCSA President, Collin Pullar; Lt.-Gov. Vaughn Solomon Schofield; SCSA Safety Advisor, Cpl. Justin Brooks; Advisory Services Manager, Loy Levesque; Major-General Paul Bury, Chief Reserves and Employer Support

NCSO Exam Eligibility Update

Feb
7

National Construction Safety Officers (NCSO™) certified prior to August 30, 2017 wishing to write the NCSO National Exam will now have until August 30, 2019 to have the required experience criteria grandfathered.  After this date, those wishing to write the exam will have to re-apply to the program and submit their experience letters for acceptance based on the new NCSO National Standard requirements.  All training obtained either before or after this date will be accepted, provided it meets the program requirements and certifications have been maintained.  For more information, please email Program Services.

To learn more about the NCSO program, please visit: www.scsaonline.ca/programs/ncso

SCSA Presents Safety Award to Daytona Homes

Feb
5

The SCSA was a proud sponsor of the Regina and Region Home Builders' Association's (RRHBA) Safety Award, presented to winner, Daytona Homes Regina Ltd., at the Master Awards Gala that took place at the Delta Hotel in Regina on January 26, 2019. SCSA Marketing Coordinator, Terri Larsen, presented the award to Carri Douhaniuc (right), Warranty Manager at Daytona Homes Regina Ltd. 

The RRHBA Safety Award recognizes a company in the residential construction industry that creates a healthy and safe workplace by having an effective health and safety program. Judging is based on the home builder's safety policy statement; hazard identification and control; communication and training; and emergency preparedness.

Daytona Homes Regina Ltd. first received their Certificate of Recognition (COR®) certification through the SCSA in 2011. COR is an occupational health and safety accreditation program which verifies that a company has a fully-implemented health and safety management system that meets national standards.

Some of the benefits of COR program certification, include:

  • Injury prevention and cost savings: A COR certified company can experience reduced financial costs associated with injuries and incidents that affect the company’s financial bottom line. A good safety record will enhance an organization’s reputation in the industry. Employers have found an evaluation of their health and safety program is an effective way to identify organizations weaknesses to be corrected. This can lead to improvements in the system, and fewer job injuries and job interruptions will contribute to a more productive and profitable company.
  • Pre-bid qualification: COR certification is a pre-bid qualification requirement for many buyers of construction in Saskatchewan. Qualifying your company to bid puts your company at a decided advantage when compared to those companies that are not COR certified. The COR program is often referenced by construction owners and contractors to locate employers with a demonstrated commitment to accident prevention.
  • Due diligence: The documentation and general safety awareness produced by the COR process may also provide evidence of due diligence if your company is charged with an Occupational Health and Safety offence. Through the process of training, program development, and implementation, companies build a more effective organization

For more information on the COR program, please visit: www.scsaonline.ca/programs/cor

Photo (L-R); SCSA Marketing Coordinator, Terri Larsen; Carri Douhaniuc, Warranty Manager at Daytona Homes Regina Ltd. 

Tool Box Talk: Contractor/ Prime Contractor Duties

Jan
22

Take the latest Tool Box Talk: Contractor/ Prime Contractor Duties to your next safety meeting! Many others to choose from at: www.scsaonline.ca/resources/tool-box-talks

 

SCSA Guide to OHS Leg: Mobile App Tutorial

Jan
21

Watch Riley, an SCSA Safety Advisor, show you the ins and outs of the SCSA's Guide to Occupational Health and Safety (OHS) Legislation mobile app. Search "SCSA" in your Andriod or Apple store to install this free app. Use and share the app to help the SCSA achieve its mission of Constructing Safety Leadership in Saskatchewan and its vision of creating the Safest Construction Environment in Canada

Tool Box Talk: Isolated Work Environment

Jan
8

Check out the latest Tool Box Talk: Isolated Work Environment.
Many others to choose from at www.scsaonline.ca/resources/tool-box-talks

Jan 2019 SCSA e-Newsletter

Jan
8

Join the SCSA mission of Constructing Safety Leadership in Saskatchewan.  Check out the latest SCSA e-Newsletter and be sure to subscribe at www.scsaonline.ca/e-news to receive this in your inbox each month. 

2019 Mobile App Survey

Jan
7

The SCSA Business Development Unit is gathering member input in order to evaluate the current and future state of the SCSA's Guide to OHS Legislation mobile app. Please take a few minutes to answer this brief six-question survey. All feedback is welcome and much appreciated. 

2019 NCSO and HSA of the Year Awards

Jan
7

Do you know a National Construction Safety Officer (NCSO™) or a certified Health and Safety Administrator (HSA) that goes above and beyond their role in creating safety excellence? Nominate them for the 2019 NCSO or HSA of the Year Award! The Winners will receive a scholarship to further their safety training. Deadline for submission is February 28, 2019. 

Every year, the Saskatchewan Construction Safety Association (SCSA) is proud to honour individuals, companies, and committees, for their commitment to promoting effective health and safety management systems in the residential and commercial building construction industry in Saskatchewan. The SCSA presents these awards at its Annual General Meeting and Constructing Safety Leadership Conference in the spring of each year. All award recipients also receive recognition in various SCSA online and offline publications and promotions, including the SCSA Safety Advocate and SaskBusiness magazine.

2019 NATIONAL CONSTRUCTION SAFETY OFFICER (NCSO)™ AWARD

Download the NCSO Award Criteria and Nomination Form (fillable PDF) package and submit completed nomination forms to awards@scsaonline.ca 

2019 HEALTH AND SAFETY ADMINISTRATOR (HSA) AWARD 

Download the HSA Award Criteria and Nomination Form (fillable PDF) package and submit completed nomination forms to awards@scsaonline.ca 

2019 Board of Directors - Call for Expressions of Interest

Jan
3

A call for Expressions of Interest is addressed to members of the Saskatchewan Construction Safety Association (SCSA). All members who are interested in serving on the 2019 SCSA Board of Directors are encouraged to submit an Expression of Interest.

Please complete the forms and return them to:

Saskatchewan Construction Safety Association
498 Henderson Drive
Regina, SK S4N 6E3
Or fax it to: (306) 525-1542, Or email to eadmin@scsaonline.ca

Closing date for receipt of Expressions of Interest is: 12:00 p.m. Friday, January 18, 2019

These are the current vacancies:

General Workforce Director (nominee from the General Workforce)
Board Appointed Director (nominee from Board of Directors)
Residential Director (nominee from a Residential Employer)

Upon receiving the Nominees of the Board and the Nominating Groups in accordance with  Section 34, the Governance Committee shall review and consider the qualifications of all of the Nominees and shall have the right, at its sole discretion, to determine whether each of the Nominees shall be eligible to stand for election to the Board at the next annual meeting of the members. Notwithstanding anything contained in the SCSA bylaws, only those Nominees approved by the Governance Committee shall be eligible to stand for election to the Board.

The final member vote will take place at the SCSA Annual General Meeting on March 21, 2019 

Constructing Safety Leadership Awards Clarification

Dec
17

Every year, the Saskatchewan Construction Safety Association (SCSA) is proud to honour individuals, companies, and committees, for their commitment to promoting effective health and safety management systems in the residential and commercial building construction industry in Saskatchewan. The SCSA presents these awards at its Annual General Meeting. As a point of clarification, one winner and two runners up will be selected for both the Corporate Leadership in Safety Award and the Safety Practitioner Award. All nomination questionnaires, forms, and letters must be fully completed, signed, and submitted to the SCSA Executive Assistant at eadmin@scsaonline.ca on or before December 31 of each year to be considered for the SCSA Annual Constructing Safety Leadership Awards. For more information, please contact  the SCSA Executive Assistant or call 306-525-0175. To download the application guide, visit www.scsaonline.ca/safety-awards

WorkSafe educates Sask. public about asbestos risks

Dec
13

As homeowners and contractors prepare to begin renovation projects in the new year, WorkSafe Saskatchewan is continuing to educate the public on the risks of asbestos exposure in residential and commercial properties. Asbestos-related diseases are the leading cause of workplace deaths in Saskatchewan, causing 25 per cent of all workplace-related deaths over the last 10 years.

Occupational disease-related fatalities are often diagnosed years after a workplace exposure and account for 44 per cent of this year’s workplace fatalities as of Oct. 31, 2018. Despite increased awareness of the hazards presented by asbestos exposure, it is expected that some workers in the province will be exposed, putting them at risk of disease or death decades into the future.

“A lot of people aren’t aware that they might have asbestos in their homes or their offices. When asbestos is disturbed during renovations, then it becomes dangerous,” said Kevin Mooney, the Saskatchewan Workers’ Compensation Board (WCB)’s Director of Prevention. “WorkSafe Saskatchewan is educating Saskatchewan residents about existing asbestos hazards and providing people with tools and resources to help them become more informed.”

Today, WorkSafe launched an asbestos awareness video at worksafesask.ca/asbestos featuring testimonials from two Saskatchewan residents impacted by asbestos exposure. WorkSafe also sent posters and till danglers on asbestos awareness for display in the aisles of 119 home improvement stores. This includes 33 home improvement stores in Regina, Saskatoon, Moose Jaw and Prince Albert, as well as provincially to 53 Co-op stores and 33 Home Hardware stores.

During the year, WorkSafe Saskatchewan, in partnership with the Saskatchewan Construction Safety Association, hosted several interactive asbestos information booths at two spring home shows and Home Depots in Regina and Saskatoon. These events helped homeowners and tradespeople identify where asbestos may be present in their homes and workplaces, as well as use WorkSafe’s new asbestos app.

“Asbestos-related lung diseases are preventable,” said Mooney. “While many asbestos-related diseases are from past practices, there are actions we can take today to reduce exposure to this hazard.”

Most homes and buildings in Saskatchewan were built before 1990, which means they likely contain asbestos. A professional abatement team should always be hired to remove asbestos from a home or workplace before starting renovations. Homeowners and tradespeople should never put themselves at risk and remove asbestos themselves.

More information, tools and resources about asbestos awareness and prevention, as well as WorkSafe’s asbestos app, are available at worksafesask.ca/asbestos.

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For more information, please contact:
Jennifer Pilsner, Senior Marketing Manager, Saskatchewan Workers’ Compensation Board
Phone: 306.787.4651 or cell: 306.519.4220
jpilsner@wcbsask.com
 

2018 Year in Review

Dec
11

Watch this conversation between SCSA President, Collin Pullar and Rawlco Radio Advertising Consultant, Kevin Capewell, for a recap of what the Saskatchewan Construction Safety Association (SCSA) has achieved this past year, and hopes to continue in 2019.

2019 WCB Building Construction Rate Code Premium Rates

Dec
11

The Saskatchewan Workers’ Compensation Board (WCB) has released the approved premium rates for 2019. For the “B” Building Construction Rate Code, preliminary rates have increased in the B11 Construction Trades and B12 Residential Construction sub-codes and have decreased for the B13 Commercial, Industrial Construction code.

The premium rates below are the industry premium rate per $100 of assessable payroll. In December 2018, employers will be notified of their specific rate including experience rating.

The Experience Rating Program adjusts the industry premium rate based on individual claims experience. Reducing the number and cost of claims through injury prevention and workplace safety can improve experience ratings and reduce WCB premiums.

The increases in the B11 and B12 codes reflect the WCB's implementation of the Enhanced Rate Model, which will be applied to all industries in 2019.

For more information on the WCB Enhanced Rate Model, including recorded educational sessions, please visit: www.wcbsask.com/wcbs-2016-rate-model-review-recommendations/

For more information on the WCB Experience Rating Program, visit: www.wcbsask.com/employers/classification-premium-rates/experience-rating/

2019 WCB RATES - BUILDING CONSTRUCTION RATE CODES

  • B11 - Construction Trades -- 2018 Rate (1.52%) 2019 Rate (1.55%) --> 2.0% change
  • B12 - Residential Construction -- 2018 Rate ( 2.55%) 2019 Rate (2.58%) --> 1.2% change
  • B13 - Commercial, Industrial Construction -- 2018 Rate (1.91%) 2019 Rate (1.79%) --> -6.3% change

Full news release: http://www.scsaonline.ca/news/news-feed/wcb-approves-2019-premium-rates 

WCB approves 2019 premium rates

Dec
11

The Saskatchewan Workers’ Compensation Board (WCB) has approved the 2019 average employer premium rate of $1.17 per hundred dollars of payroll, a decrease of 1.7 per cent from the 2018 rate of $1.19. The 2019 rate marks the 12th consecutive year the rate has dropped, making it the lowest rate in more than 30 years. The 2019 average rate is 42.9 per cent below the 16-year high of $2.05 in 2004.

“Because of the safety focus of many employers and workers, many industry rate codes have experienced fewer workplace injuries and lower claims costs,” said WCB Chairperson Gord Dobrowolsky. “This is a factor in the overall drop in premium rates.”

In 2019, 42.5 per cent of Saskatchewan employers covered by the WCB will see a decrease or no change to their industry premium rate, with the decreases ranging from 0.6 per cent to 14.0 per cent. The premium rates for 57.5 per cent of employers will increase in 2019, with the increases ranging from 1.2 per cent to 17.4 per cent.

The 2019 industry premium rates reflect the WCB’s complete transition to the enhanced rate model that was implemented in 2018. For 2018 only, to mitigate the impact of the move to the enhanced rate model, the WCB drew from the Injury Fund to help employers in 14 rate codes whose premium rate would increase as a result of moving to the enhanced rate model. For 2019, the premium rate for all rate codes was calculated under the enhanced model. Of the employers seeing an increase to their 2019 premium rate, 54.5 per cent are because of the final transition to the enhanced rate model.

Through effective injury prevention and return-to-work programs, employers can influence the premium rate they pay. For more information, visit www.worksafesask.ca.

“We’ve seen what successful injury prevention initiatives can accomplish in the workplace. For the past two years, 88 per cent of employers in our province achieved zero injuries,” said WCB CEO Peter Federko. “However, we need to keep working together and stay committed to keeping every workplace safe.”

 

Media Contact:
Lisa Goudy - WCB Communications
306.787.6714
lgoudy@wcbsask.com

The Saskatchewan Workers’ Compensation Board is a provincial statutory agency governed by a Board of Directors and is funded by employers. Saskatchewan’s workers’ compensation system was adopted in 1930. At that time, the Workmen’s Compensation Act made into law what is known as the historic compromise: employers became collectively liable for workers’ compensation costs and, in return, workers waived their right to sue for work injury. Visit www.wcbsask.com for more detail on rate setting and other WCB initiatives.

Mission: Zero is an initiative to eliminate workplace injuries in Saskatchewan. Launched at the WCB’s 2008 Annual General Meeting, the Mission: Zero campaign and programs drive home the impact of work injuries and the importance of workplace safety and injury prevention. The intent behind Mission: Zero is to bring about faster and deeper reductions to the provincial workplace injury rate.

View the now approved "B" Building Rate Codes for 2019, here: http://www.scsaonline.ca/news/news-feed/preliminary-2019-wcb-premium-rates 

2018: A Year in Review

Dec
5

2018 was a year of significant change and advancement for the Saskatchewan Construction Safety Association (SCSA) and its members.

The year began with a celebration of the late 2017 announcement from the Saskatchewan Ministry of Central Services regarding new safety standards.  It was announced that as of April 1, 2019, Certificate of Recognition (COR®) certification will be required for all construction contracts expected to exceed $1M in value.  This was an exciting development for all members that have made significant investments in their safety management systems.

The SCSA Board of Directors confirmed an updated organizational profile to redefine the SCSA’s mission of Constructing Safety Leadership and its vision of creating the Safest Construction Environment in Canada.

“We have learned over the years that telling people how to stay safe isn’t enough to overhaul a culture that has historically struggled with safety. Anything that is going to affect a change in an organization and a province has to be done at a leaderships level. Our new mission is entirely about supporting safety leaders,” explains SCSA President, Collin Pullar.

At the February Annual General Meeting, the SCSA members approved a series of changes to the SCSA bylaws and board governance structure to reflect modern governance practices and ensure alignment with legislative requirements.  The structure, composition, and size of the board were also modified to ensure balanced representation and engagement from industry leaders.

In March, the SCSA hosted its first Constructing Safety Leadership Conference in Regina, featuring a range of speakers including a panel discussion led by industry leaders.  The event facilitated important discussion topics that will carry into the next conference taking place at Saskatoon’s TCU Place on April 10, 2019.

The Association was honoured to be recognized by the Better Business Bureau of Saskatchewan with an award for Business Ethics and by the Regina and District Chamber of Commerce with a Paragon Award for Marketing and Promotional Excellence.   The SCSA Board was very excited to see the Association having an impact on not only the industry but also influencing the culture of business more broadly.  The SCSA will continue to focus efforts in the areas of modernization and ethical business leadership in the new year.

Through the use of technology, modernizing product and service delivery has also been a major strategic focus of the Board.  A new mobile Hazard Assessment Tool and ten additional safety topics were added to the SCSA Guide to OHS Legislation mobile app.  This has become a popular tool that has tracked more than 3,500 downloads since its launch in September of 2017.  With these recent enhancements, workers can more easily conduct hazard assessments – an integral component of injury prevention – and access a total of 30 key safety topics with relevant legislation and other resources.

Inside the SCSA classrooms, pilot projects introducing tablet devices and virtual reality (VR) training tools are well underway; taking safety training and information retention to a whole new level.  The SCSA’s VR tool is one of the first of its kind for the Saskatchewan Industry and is already being evaluated by other leading training institutions in the province.

Strategic alliances with the Saskatchewan Polytechnic School of Construction, the Saskatchewan Junior Hockey League, Saskatchewan Safety Council, and others, were strengthened this past year – helping to further extend and integrate the message of injury prevention and safety leadership throughout the province.

Together, the SCSA Board of Directors, Regional Safety Committees, members, staff, and partners look forward to the challenges and opportunities in the year ahead.

TRAIN YOUR WORKERS THROUGH THE SCSA! CANADA-SK JOB GRANT

Nov
22
The Canada-Saskatchewan Job Grant helps employers increase their training budget to ensure they can provide their workers with the training they require to meet workforce demands. The Saskatchewan Construction Safety Association (SCSA) is proud to be recognized as an eligible third-party training institution under the Grant. Applications for training with start dates before March 31, 2019 will be accepted pending available funding. Take advantage of this valuable business opportunity by considering SCSA training programs offered by the SCSA year-round at its training centres in Regina and Saskatoon.
 

The National Construction Safety Officer (NCSO™) Program 
The NCSO designation meets the national standard requirements and verifies that a person has met the training, practical application, years of experience and written performance measurements set out by the Canadian Federation of Construction Safety Associations (CFCSA). Persons who achieve the NCSO designation are a valuable resource to management in the administration and implementation of a company's health and safety program. 

Health and Safety Administrator (HSA) Program:
The objective of the HSA program is to provide formal training for an administrator of a health and safety program, who does not possess a minimum of three years construction field experience. Certification indicates to employers that the participant has knowledge in various health and safety management skills and principles. This knowledge positions the individual to provide support in the administration of a company’s health and safety program. 

Certificate of Recognition (COR®) or Small Employer Certificate of Recognition (SECOR®) Programs:
Both the NCSO and HSA designations are valuable assets to companies looking to achieve or maintain Certificate of Recognition or Small Employer Certificate of Recognition certification.

Further information on SCSA training programs, visit www.scsaonline.ca/programs; email scsaprograminfo@scsaonline.ca; or call us toll free: 1-800-817-2079; (306) 525-0175 in Regina; (306) 652-0907 in Saskatoon.

To apply for the Canada Saskatchewan Job grant, visit: https://www.saskatchewan.ca/business/hire-train-and-manage-employees/apply-for-the-canada-saskatchewan-job-grant

Regina RSC Presents SaskPower Safety

Nov
15

The quarterly Regional Safety Committee (RSC) held at Industrial Cafe in Regina on November 15th featured a presentation from guest speaker, Jeff Matity, a consultant of safety awareness and promotion at SaskPower.  The presentation, "Staying Safe Around Electricity," included videos of powerful stories shared by those who have experienced close calls with electricity. 

Since 2007, there have been 6,000 line strikes, 28 injuries and 12 fatalities across all industries in the province. In the last 10 years in Saskatchewan, the construction sector saw 3,500 contacts (about 350/year) -- 1,700 were underground, 1,800 were overhead, and there were three fatalities (2009, 2011, 2018). Below are some safety tips and video/print resources on power line safety.


Prevent Incidents

1) Look Up and Live: Plan your work in advance, lower equipment and us a spotter 

2) Before You Dig: Have underground power lines marked by contacting Sask 1st Call at 1-866-828-4888 or www.sask1stcall.com

3) Report power line damage by calling 310-2220


Powerful Stories

The Saskpower website has a number of Powerful Stories videos that highlight the personal experiences of contractors, farmers, and others who have experienced or witnessed a contact, or a near-miss contact, with a power line. More than two decades ago, Lyle came face-to-face with a potentially fatal power line contact. And because of his own personal experience with tragedy, it’s been weighing on his mind ever since. View his story, here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cocbJsgVkdU 


Resources

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To learn more about Regional Safety Committee meetings, please visit our Regional Safety Committees page

SCSA Classrooms Go Paperless

Nov
14

The Saskatchewan Construction Safety Association (SCSA) is proud to announce its classrooms are going paperless. A pilot project was launched at its Regina office today to replace all paper course manuals in its classrooms with internet-connected tablet computers. 

“We hope that modernizing our classrooms with the use of these devices will enhance the learning experience of employers and their employees; eliminating some of the barriers they have identified with respect to their success as effective safety leaders,” said Collin Pullar, president of the SCSA. 

The SCSA offers 17 classroom courses at its offices in Regina and Saskatoon, as well as throughout the province upon request.  After the pilot project is complete, plans are in place to have tablets completely replace student manuals and other course materials for all classroom training.

To learn more about SCSA classroom courses, please visit: www.scsaonline.ca/courses/classroom-training

        

WorkSafe’s Safe Worker, Safe Employer Award nominations open until Nov. 17

Nov
7

Do you know a worker who leads safety in the workplace, or an employer who makes safety a core company value? Each year, WorkSafe Saskatchewan recognizes workers and employers who strive to make Mission: Zero a reality in the province through the Safe Worker Award and Safe Employer Award. This year’s nomination deadline for both awards is November 17.

“It’s important to recognize those workers and employers who have taken the steps to create strong safety cultures in their workplaces,” said Kevin Mooney, the Saskatchewan Workers’ Compensation Board (WCB)’s Director of Prevention. “Workers who identify hazards and introduce safety initiatives create safer work environments, while employers who prioritize safety reduce workplace injuries and improve employee morale.”

Applicants will be evaluated on the following criteria:

Safe Worker Award Criteria

Safe Employer Award Criteria

  • This award is not open to management, front line supervisors or those in dedicated safety positions.
  • The worker should have exemplary involvement in health and safety.
  • It is preferred if the worker sits on their Occupational Health and Safety Committee (OHC).
  • Workers should have championed an innovative safety idea or project in the workplace. Include how and why it was implemented, as well as any barriers to overcome.
  • This safety idea or project should have had workplace safety and health benefits, as well as other measurable results and cultural benefits.
  • OHC, OH&S representatives or small-sized employers are encouraged to nominate someone from their workplace.
  • All Saskatchewan businesses, unions, municipalities, schools, service organizations, and non-profit organizations with a valid Saskatchewan WCB firm number are eligible to apply.
  • Applicants must not have any compliance disputes concerning all safety-related codes, acts and regulations.
  • Organizations should have a health and safety policy outlining roles, responsibilities and health/safety goals.
  • Employers should have hazard identification, inspection processes and emergency response processes. There should also be processes to effectively communicate safety messages and ensuring employees are trained to work safely.
  • Organizations should regularly measure and report how health and safety are managed in accordance with a recognized standard, such as a safety association audit.


Developing research from the University of Regina and trends across Canada suggest that building a culture of health and safety, both on and off the job, will have a positive impact on workplace injuries and fatalities.

“At the WCB, our preliminary data analysis points to a consistent pocket of serious injuries in Saskatchewan and research points to the positive effects that the reduction of serious injuries has on a jurisdiction’s overall fatality rate and total injury rate,” said Mooney. “Achieving Mission: Zero is the collective efforts of multiple parties working together – from individuals to organizations to leaders.”

WorkSafe has presented the Safe Worker Award since 2006 and the Safe Employer Award since 2007. Workplace peers and colleagues nominate the recipients of these awards. Two committees representing WorkSafe Saskatchewan, the Saskatchewan Federation of Labour, the Saskatchewan Safety Council and the Canadian Society of Safety Engineers adjudicate the nominations.

The top three finalists for each award will be notified in January 2019 and the award winners are announced and presented with their award during an awards luncheon taking place annually at the WCB’s Compensation Institute, a two-day educational event in March.

In 2018, the Safe Worker Award was presented to Justin Ellis with Humboldt Electric in Saskatoon and the Safe Employer Award was presented to the R.M. of Wilton in Marshall.

“We applaud all of the past winners of our Safe Worker and Safe Employer Awards for their commitments to zero injuries, zero fatalities, and zero suffering,” said Mooney. “There are many workers and employers in this province implementing great initiatives to improve safety at their workplaces and we want to hear about them.”

Nominations close on November 17, 2018 for the 2019 awards. To nominate a safe worker and safe employer, visit www.worksafesask.ca/resources/awards.

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For more information, please contact:

Jennifer Pilsner
Senior Marketing Manager
Saskatchewan Workers’ Compensation Board
Phone: 306.787.4651
Cell: 306.519.4220
jpilsner@wcbsask.com

WorkSafe Saskatchewan is an injury prevention and workplace safety partnership between the WCB and the Ministry of Labour Relations and Workplace Safety. Through the partnership, both agencies offer programs and support that help employers and workers develop workplace safety and health programs. You can reach WorkSafe Saskatchewan at 1.800.667.7590. Follow us on Twitter: @worksafesask, YouTube: youtube.com/worksafesask or on Facebook: facebook.com/WorkSafeSK for real-time updates.

Mission: Zero is an initiative to eliminate all injuries in Saskatchewan. Launched in 2008, Mission: Zero drives home the effects of injuries and the importance of safety and injury prevention at home, work and play. The intent behind Mission: Zero is to bring about a significant reduction in the provincial injury rate.

Injury Prevention Messages Target Common Injuries

Nov
1

The Saskatchewan Construction Safety Association (SCSA) unveiled its SJHL campaign on November 1, 2018. Over the course of the 2018-2019 season, the SCSA will be running a series of safety messages (below) on the digital displays in each of the 12 communities that host SJHL teams. These safety messages focus on preventing head injuries, eye injuries, hand injuries and the importance of Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) on the jobsite and on the ice. It is estimated that preventable injuries cost the provincial economy $1.1 billion each year.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


Win-Win Partnership Continues

Nov
1

MEDIA RELEASE

REGINA, SK, November 1, 2018 – The Great One, Wayne Gretzky, is generally credited with saying, “a good hockey player plays where the puck is. A great hockey player plays where the puck is going to be.” The partnership that was formed in 2017 with the Saskatchewan Junior Hockey League (SJHL) helped to not only put the Saskatchewan Construction Safety Association (SCSA) in the rural communities where their members are, but also where those business owners, and the people who they employ in the construction industry, spend their time during the winter months . . . in the local hockey arena.

SCSA President, Collin Pullar, explains, “There are parallels that we can draw between preventing common sports injuries and preventing those same injuries in the workplace. And just like in the game of hockey, when we lose a co-worker to a preventable injury, the team is not able to function the way it did prior to the injury. More and more business leaders are recognizing that losing a member of the team can impact the ability to get the job done on time and on budget. So looking at preventing the most impactful injuries makes good business sense.”

It is estimated that preventable injuries cost the provincial economy $1.1 billion each year. Over the course of the 2018-2019 season, the SCSA will be running a series of safety messages on the digital displays in each of the 12 communities that host SJHL teams. These safety messages focus on preventing head injuries, eye injuries, hand injuries and the importance of Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) on the jobsite and on the ice.

“At the SCSA, our vision is to create the safest construction environment in Canada and our mission is constructing safety leadership in Saskatchewan. Safety leaders are not just found on construction sites. Safety leaders are in our communities and in our schools. They are business owners, safety professionals, employees, volunteers, coaches and teammates,” says Pullar.

SJHL President, Bill Chow, adds, “Through the education process [the campaign] we can internally help our players become more aware and through our partnership we can help educate not only construction workers but the general public on trying to be a little safer.”

For more information, please contact:

Terri Larsen
Marketing Coordinator
Saskatchewan Construction Safety Association
terril@scsaonline.ca
306.525.0175 ext. 232

Have you ever been in a situation where working safely was the difference between you being injured or not? We want to hear about it. To be featured in our SJHL Safety Share, contact Terri at the email address above. Your submission will earn you some SCSA #SafetyDoneRight swag.

About the Saskatchewan Construction Safety Association

The Saskatchewan Construction Safety Association (SCSA) is an industry-funded, membership-based, non-profit organization that provides cost-effective, accessible safety training and advice to employers and employees in the construction industry throughout the province to reduce the human and financial losses associated with injuries. Registered March 20, 1995 the SCSA is, and has been since inception, committed to injury prevention. Serving almost 10,000 member companies, the major business units of the association are Advisory Services, Business Development, Corporate Services, Program Services and Training. 

WCB and WorkSafe Saskatchewan building injury prevention research capacity

Oct
31

“Dr. Tucker’s abundant experience in health and safety research will be a great asset in his new role,” said Phil Germain, Vice-President of Prevention at the WCB. “Sadly, workplace fatalities are higher this year than we’ve seen in the past few years. There is no single cause for this, which is why it’s so important for us to work together to find solutions.”

Tucker has four main roles with WorkSafe Saskatchewan:

  • He will help injury prevention partners identify and define occupational health and safety (OHS) research priorities.
  • He will increase awareness of OHS-related research priorities among researchers while increasing funding applications to funding agencies.
  • He will review and, where necessary, support improving research contracts and research project reporting procedures for Saskatchewan WCB-funded OHS projects. This includes helping to improve collaboration among WCB and LRWS research programs.
  • He will enhance the knowledge translation of WCB-funded research project findings.

“Based on the latest research and trends in the province, organizations should concentrate on safety-related leadership, employee training, and increasing awareness of OHS rights and responsibilities,” said Tucker. “By taking these steps and working together we can prevent serious injuries and deaths at work.”

For more information, please contact:

Carolyn Van der Veen - WCB
306.535.2374
cvanderveen@wcbsask.com

WorkSafe Saskatchewan is an injury prevention and workplace safety partnership between the WCB and the Ministry of Labour Relations and Workplace Safety. Through the partnership, both agencies offer programs and support that help employers and workers develop workplace safety and health programs. You can reach WorkSafe Saskatchewan at 1.800.667.7590. Follow us on Twitter: @worksafesask, YouTube: youtube.com/worksafesask or on Facebook: facebook.com/WorkSafeSK for real-time updates.

Mission: Zero is an initiative to eliminate all injuries in Saskatchewan. Launched in 2008, Mission: Zero drives home the effects of injuries and the importance of safety and injury prevention at home, work and play. The intent behind Mission: Zero is to bring about a significant reduction in the provincial injury rate.
 

Free CCOHS e-Course: Nanotechnology and Health

Oct
30

The Canadian Centre for Occupational Health and Safety (CCOHS) has released a free awareness e-Course, Nanotechnology and Health, to help workers identify and safely control sources and products containing nanomaterials in their workplaces. Nanomaterials are used in the manufacturing industry to produce products, such as computer hard drives, clothing, and glare-reducing coatings for eyeglasses and cars. These miniscule materials come with some potentially big health hazards for workers who may be exposed through inhalation, skin contact, or ingestion, especially for those who use nanotechnology in research or production processes.

Nanotechnology and Health is a free, 30-minute e-course that provides workers, managers, supervisors, and health and safety committee members with information on nanomaterials that may be found in Canadian workplaces. The course covers the potential health hazards of nanomaterials and how workers can be protected from related illness and injury. This e-course provides participants with a definition of nanotechnology, information on how nanomaterials are made, and ways to control and prevent exposure and potential health effects.

The e-course, Nanotechnology and Health, can be accessed from the CCOHS website, here: www.ccohs.ca/products/courses/nanotechnology/

SCSA Sponsors 2018 ABEX Awards

Oct
23

The SCSA was a proud safety sponsor of the 2018 Saskatchewan Chamber of Commerce's ABEX Awards presented by Conexus Credit Union at TCU Place in Saskatoon on October 20, 2018. The ABEX awards highlight pivotal business elements of provincial prosperity and brings together the leading figures from the business community to showcase the quality of private enterprise in Saskatchewan. The SCSA would like to congratulate all of the 2018 ABEX Award winners for the positive impact they have had on the business community in our province. 

Industrial Machine and Mfg. Inc. is the recipient of the ‘Business of the Year’ Award, sponsored by the David Aplin Group, as well as the Export Award, for its ingenuity and quality products that it continues to successfully export worldwide.

“Although all finalists were deserving of the Business of the Year Award, Industrial Machine and Mfg. Inc. has been bringing Saskatchewan quality and expertise to customers around the world. In this competitive industry, Industrial Machine has made its mark internationally and we are pleased to have the opportunity to recognize its success with this ABEX award,” said Steve McLellan, CEO of the Saskatchewan Chamber of Commerce.

Meridian Surveys has been inducted into the ‘Saskatchewan Business Hall of Fame’ for its excellence in the surveying industry.

“We are so pleased to induct Meridian Surveys into the Saskatchewan Business Hall of Fame. This company has been an integral part of the growth of our province and with its focus on new technology and new markets we look forward to the next 50 years,” said McLellan.

For her significant contributions to the Saskatchewan Chamber network and her work with the Battlefords Chamber of Commerce, Linda Machniak is the recipient of the Roger Phillips Chamber Builder Award.

“Linda’s knowledge of the chamber network and her dedication to the business community in the Battlefords has ensured the success of that chamber and she is well respected in our chamber network,” said Steve McLellan.

Grant J. Kook is the recipient of the 2018 ABEX ‘Business Leader of the Year’ award, sponsored by the University of Regina. This award celebrates his business success, his contributions to the Saskatchewan business community and his expertise as a business visionary. Mr. Kook is the founder, President and CEO of Westcap Management Ltd. and has been instrumental in the capital eco-system in Saskatchewan.

“Grant J. Kook is an exceptional business leader and his dedication to the Saskatchewan business community has positively influenced the growth of Saskatchewan’s economy, bringing it to where it is today,” said McLellan.

The 2018 ABEX Awards posthumously honoured Donald E. Kramer as ‘Community Leader of the Year’. This award, sponsored by SaskEnergy, recognizes an individual who has made a positive contribution to Saskatchewan communities through volunteerism and philanthropy.

McLellan said, “We are so pleased to be able to honour Don Kramer. The quiet generosity he showed in his lifetime will continue to support programs across our province for decades to come.”

This year, over 80 ABEX nominations were received and 50 finalists were selected. Ultimately, 12 Saskatchewan businesses were recognized as Achieving Business Excellence Award recipients. By striving for excellence, these winners personify business success in Saskatchewan.

For further information contact:         
 

Steve McLellan, CEO
Saskatchewan Chamber of Commerce
Tel.: 306.533.7686
Email: smclellan@saskchamber.com

Morgana van Niekerk
Saskatchewan Chamber of Commerce
Tel.: 306.537.1719
Email: mvanniekerk@saskchamber.com

 
2018 ABEX Winners

The Award for Innovation, sponsored by Saskatchewan Polytechnic
InfraReady Products (1990) Ltd. - Saskatoon

InfraReady Products (1998) Ltd. is an innovative, industrial food ingredient manufacturer that was founded in 1994 in an attempt to add value to cereal grains before they were exported out of Saskatchewan. Today, InfraReady Products adds value to food products with the use of infra-red technology. The infra-red technology creates safer food that has an increased shelf-life, cooks quicker and has a softer texture. With over 250 custom designed products made from a wide range of cereals, grains, oilseeds and pulses, InfraReady Products supplies food manufacturers around the globe with wholesome, healthy and ready-to-use ingredients.

The Award for Service, sponsored by World Trade Center Saskatoon
Historic Reesor Ranch, Maple Creek

For 113 years and six generations, the Reesor family at the Historic Reesor Ranch has been preserving the legacy of ranching in Saskatchewan. In 2017, the Historic Reesor Ranch became Saskatchewan’s first working ranch to be designated as a Provincial Heritage Property. The business strikes a successful balance between managing growth and maintaining the integrity of the land, while consistently delivering an authentic, memorable visitor experience. In addition to their Canadian Signature horseback riding adventures, the Historic Reesor Ranch offers guests the Ranch Hall Grill, guided ATV tours, enticing winter getaway packages and Wine in the West tours.

The Award for Export, sponsored by Saskatchewan Trade and Export Partnership (STEP)
Industrial Machine & Mfg. Inc., Saskatoon

Industrial Machine & Mfg. Inc. has been serving the global markets of mining, oil & gas, power generation, industrial and original equipment manufacturers for over 60 years. IMM is actively engaged in delivering innovative solutions, custom manufactured components, and services. The company devotes a great deal of time to working on business development, strategic planning and tactical opportunities within the heavy resource industry. IMM’s various partnerships assist in understanding and targeting specific companies in export regions that have a need for the products and services that IMM provides. As a result, approximately 45% of all sales are export-based and growing, with IMM having exported to nearly every continent across all its industry segments.

The Award for Community Involvement, sponsored by Cogent Chartered Professional Accountants LLP
Affinity Credit Union, Saskatoon

Affinity Credit Union strives to build a better world for everyone, every day. It is a leader in supporting community initiatives with four major areas of focus – building community assets, economic self-reliance, environmental sustainability, and local economic development. In 2017, Affinity donated $2.1 million towards sponsorships, donations and scholarships to 601 organizations and initiatives across Saskatchewan. Affinity believes that community involvement is more than just financial aid. Employees are provided time to volunteer, can direct $200 towards any charity, and are encouraged to facilitate financial literacy workshops through the Each One Teach One program.

The Award for Priority Focus, sponsored by the Saskatchewan Indian Gaming Authority (SIGA)
Orano Canada Inc., Saskatoon

Orano Canada Inc. believes that the safety and mental health of its employees is a cornerstone of its success. This commitment is reflected in a campaign that was launched to understand the state of mental wellness of its workforce and identify and address concerns. The campaign was followed by the implementation of a comprehensive program to educate employees on mental health and wellness, remove related stigma and provide everyone with tools and knowledge for self-help. Orano’s proactive and ongoing efforts with regards to mental health demonstrates its leadership and care for its employees.

The Award for Young Entrepreneur of the Year, sponsored by Cameco
Haylie Lashta, Warman Physiotherapy & Wellness, Warman

In November of 2014, Haylie Lashta opened Warman Physiotherapy & Wellness, just three years after graduating. By expanding the number of exceptional therapists and support staff available, the Warman community now has even more access to the comprehensive care that Warman Physiotherapy and Wellness offers to its clients in a family-friendly environment. Haylie’s dream of providing a premier multi-disciplinary clinic is now a thriving business that is continually evolving and includes women’s health, perinatal, infant development, and pediatric pelvic floor therapy options. Haylie’s drive, focus and business vision has ensured that Warman Physio continues to be a premier facility.

The Award for Growth & Expansion, sponsored by PFM Capital Inc.
Canadian Organic Herb & Spice Co. Inc., Watson

Canadian Organic Spice & Herb Co. manufactures, markets, and distributes the Splendor Garden brand of organic food products from its facility in Watson. By creating efficiencies in every part of the business, Canadian Organic Spice & Herb Co. began showing operating profits after just three months in business and now ships to over 700 stores across Canada. It is also seeing a significant growth in its international customer base. With a high-quality product, a unique sales approach, and innovative packaging, Canadian Organic Spice & Herb Co. has seen an impressive growth in product range, sales, employees and is undertaking a 4,500 square foot warehouse expansion.

The Award for Marketing, sponsored by Handy Special Events
Luxury Granite, Regina

Luxury Granite is a countertop fabricator and installer that opened its doors in 2008. Luxury Granite has pushed the boundary of small business marketing by investing numerous resources into strategic campaigns and purposeful branding. With its “Real Life” campaign, Luxury Granite has been able to connect with the customer by focusing on real life situations and family life. The campaign focuses on countertops as a personal style choice and part of what makes a house a home. With radio advertising, a website revamp and a family-centric blog about day-to-day life, Luxury Granite has attracted new clients and increased revenue.

The Award for New Venture, sponsored by the Saskatchewan Ministry of Trade & Export Development
Ironside Energy Services Ltd., Estevan

Ironside Energy Services Ltd. prepares drill sites and delivers oilfield construction and maintenance services. Ironside Energy Services is a successful start-up that has experienced significant growth of its client base and its capital equipment inventory since its inception. Ironside Energy has managed to achieve its growth by adhering to strict quality control guidelines and providing a cost-effective service, that has been especially valuable in a difficult oil market. Ironside Energy has proven itself as a successful new venture by its ability to compete with large corporations in projects across the province.

For more information on the ABEX Awards, please visit: http://www.saskchamber.com/pages/abex

Nomination deadline for 2019 Safe Worker and Safe Employers Awards

Oct
23

Each year WorkSafe Saskatchewan formally recognizes a worker and an employer who are committed to injury prevention and safety leadership through their Safe Worker and Safe Employer awards program. In 2018, these awards were presented to:  Safe Worker – Justin Ellis, Humboldt Electric, Saskatoon, SK; Safe Employer – R.M. of Wilton, Marshall, SK. We applaud both Justin and the R.M. of Wilton for helping move Saskatchewan closer to Mission: Zero.

The nomination deadline is for the 2019 awards is November 17, 2018. To nominate a worker or employer, simply complete the online application form or print and mail a paper copy. Nomination forms and instructions are available on the WorkSafe website:

· 2019 Safe Worker award nomination form

· 2019 Safe Employer award nomination form

The top three finalists for each award will be notified in January 2019, with the winner of each announced and presented with their award during an awards luncheon at Compensation Institute in March 2019. Winners will be publically recognized through paid media in their local communities and as part of WorkSafe's provincial communications strategy.

2019 Constructing Safety Leadership Conference

Oct
15

The SCSA will be hosting its second annual Constructing Safety Leadership Conference at TCU place in Saskatoon on April 10, 2019. A panel of industry experts, moderated by SCSA President, Collin Pullar, will be discussing how to make Saskatchewan's construction industry the safest construction environment in Canada. Join us in person or watch a live streaming to find out more about how the experts are constructing safety leadership in our province.

More details will be posted on the SCSA Newsfeed and our Facebook and Twitter channels. 

Correction in Fall 2018 Safety Advocate

Oct
15

Please note that the Fall 2018 Safety Advocate publication that was recently mailed out to all members incorrectly stated that the 2019 SCSA Safety Leadership Conference will be held in Regina. The conference will be held at TCU place in Saskatoon on April 10, 2019. 

Workplace fatalities in Saskatchewan increase in 2018

Oct
11

The Saskatchewan Workers’ Compensation Board released data today documenting a rise in the number of workplace fatalities in the province during the first eight months of 2018.  From Jan. 1 to Aug. 31 of 2018, there were 37 workplace fatalities.  

“Workplace fatalities are higher than we have seen in the past few years,” said Phil Germain, Vice President of Prevention at the Saskatchewan Workers’ Compensation Board. “As employers, workers and professional organizations, together we must take steps to reverse the trend. The solutions will come from everyone working together.”

Over the past 15 years, WCB data show workplace fatalities averaged 37 per year in Saskatchewan. In 2017, the province saw 27 fatalities – the lowest number of fatalities in that timeframe.

“All workplace fatalities are preventable,” Germain said. “We all need to step up to make our workplaces safer. All organizations, no matter their size, should be investing in their own safety programs and make safety a key part of their cultures. Safety belongs to each of us individually as much as it is a collective concern.  Working safely is just smart business and it’s the right thing to do.”

The WCB reports on workplace trends, and its research indicates that organizations that comply with safety at every level, can reduce their risk of injuries and eliminate fatalities.

To date this year, the leading causes of workplace fatalities in Saskatchewan are occupational disease (exposure) and motor vehicle related incidents (MVI)/Aircraft. This compares to 2017 where the leading causes were occupational diseases and acute injuries. In the past 10 years, the top two leading causes have been occupational diseases (exposure) and acute injuries.

Occupational disease-related fatalities are often diagnosed years after a workplace exposure and account for 38.7 per cent of this year’s fatalities.  It is expected that occupational disease related deaths will continue as workers in the province continue to be exposed to asbestos, putting them at risk of disease or death decades into the future.

“There are a number of safety leaders and organizations, including WorkSafe Saskatchewan, Safe Saskatchewan, the University of Regina and the University of Saskatchewan, looking into the workplace fatalities trend in Saskatchewan.  While much is still unknown, it is certain there is no single cause, which is why so many groups and organizations are looking to find solutions that will reverse the trend,” Germain said.

The WCB is changing some of its approaches to help drive a better outcome. WorkSafe is continuing to educate employers and workers to eliminate workplace deaths. WorkSafe uses a targeted approach to help industries and employers improve workplace health and safety.


WorkSafe is introducing a number of awareness campaigns and resources, including psychological health and safety, violence in the workplace, asbestos exposure and residential construction worker safety. All of these initiatives share a common goal of helping all Saskatchewan employers achieve Mission: Zero.

“At the end of the day, this is going to take a deep commitment from all of us to change the current trend and create safer workplaces everywhere in our province,” Germain said.

For employers and workers, a good place to start is with the industry safety association or by visiting the WorkSafe Saskatchewan website at www.worksafesask.ca for practical steps they can take to prevent workplace injuries and deaths.

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Media Contact:
Lisa Goudy - WCB
306.787.6714
lgoudy@wcbsask.com

About the Saskatchewan Workers’ Compensation Board
The WCB is the provincial agency that delivers workplace insurance to Saskatchewan employers and benefits to Saskatchewan workers when they are hurt at work. The WCB legislation, The Workers’ Compensation Act, 2013, describes the workplaces that we cover and the benefits we provide. www.wcbsask.com 

WorkSafe educates workers, employers on workplace impairment

Oct
10

As part of ongoing efforts to help prepare workplaces for the legalization of cannabis, WorkSafe Saskatchewan has added some additional resources for employers to its website and launched an awareness campaign targeting Saskatchewan workers.

WorkSafe, in partnership with Miller Thomson, MNP and the Saskatchewan Chamber of Commerce, has developed a video resource for employers to answer some of the questions surrounding the legalization of cannabis. This 30-minute moderated panel discussion, hosted by Kevin Mooney, Director of Prevention at the Saskatchewan Workers’ Compensation Board (WCB), draws on the expertise of legal professionals from Miller Thomson and human resources professionals from MNP. It is part of a collection of tools and resources that WorkSafe is hosting on its website for employers and workers to access.

“Many of our industry partners came to us with concerns about the potential impacts of cannabis in workplaces, especially in safety-sensitive industries,” said Mooney. “The video panel discussion is a follow-up to the workshops that we put on in the spring, in partnership with local chambers of commerce, where we connected local companies with legal and human resources expertise. We have now taken that content and made it readily available to every employer in the province.”

Other education efforts to date include keynote speakers at Compensation Institute – the WCB’s annual compensation conference – one-day workshops with local chambers, and a link to tools and resources on the WorkSafe website.

The legalization of cannabis is a complex issue. WorkSafe wants employers to be aware that it is not just about cannabis in the workplace; it is also about ensuring that all forms of impairment – the use of drugs or alcohol, or being overtired and fatigued – are addressed.

“Workplaces have always had to deal with impairment,” said Mooney. “The soon-to-be legalization of cannabis has drawn attention to the need for employers to update, or in some cases develop, their workplace impairment policy.”

WorkSafe has also launched an online ad campaign to educate workers that being impaired at work is a risk to their safety and the safety of others.    

“Saskatchewan workers need to understand that just because using cannabis recreationally and medically is now going to be legal, it is not okay to come to work impaired,” said Mooney. “Being impaired at work is a hazard and poses a serious safety risk to the individual worker and others in the workplace.”

WorkSafe is encouraging employers to have conversations with their employees about impairment, the company’s impairment policy, and the legal consequences and safety risk of being impaired at work.

“In order for us to reduce workplace injuries and achieve Mission: Zero, workers and employers need to be aware of the risks and take preventative steps,” said Mooney. “Every worker has the right to a safe work environment and the ability to go home safely at the end of their day.”

To access the tools and resources that WorkSafe has made available to employers related to the legalization of cannabis and workplace impairment, visit www.worksafesask.ca/cannabis

To view a list of resources available through the Canadian Centre for Occupational Health and Safety (CCOHS), visit https://www.ccohs.ca/

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For more information, please contact:

Jennifer Pilsner
Senior Marketing Manager
Saskatchewan Workers’ Compensation Board
Phone: 306.787.4651
jpilsner@wcbsask.com



WorkSafe Saskatchewan is an injury prevention and workplace safety partnership between the WCB and the Ministry of Labour Relations and Workplace Safety. Through the partnership, both agencies offer programs and support that help employers and workers develop workplace safety and health programs. You can reach WorkSafe Saskatchewan at 1.800.667.7590. Follow us on Twitter: @worksafesask, YouTube: youtube.com/worksafesask or on Facebook: facebook.com/WorkSafeSK for real-time updates.

Mission: Zero is an initiative to eliminate all injuries in Saskatchewan. Launched in 2008, Mission: Zero drives home the effects of injuries and the importance of safety and injury prevention at home, work and play. The intent behind Mission: Zero is to bring about a significant reduction in the provincial injury rate.
 

WorkSafe to host event discussing how organizations can improve their safety performance

Oct
4

Regina, SK – As part of building injury prevention research capacity in the province, WorkSafe Saskatchewan is hosting an event featuring Dr. Lynda Robson, a scientist at the Institute for Work and Health and professor in the School of Occupational and Public Health at Ryerson University.

Robson will share the results of a research project, called Breakthrough Change in Workplace Occupational Health and Safety (OHS) Performance, on Thursday, Oct. 4 at 10 a.m. at the Double Tree in Regina in Capital B Room (main floor). Her research on how organizations with poor safety records can improve their performance sought to understand the processes involved in organizations undergoing large improvements in OHS. Common factors in the firms were summarized in a 12-element model published in the academic journal, Safety Science. The core of the model is new organizational learning about OHS orchestrated by a “knowledge transformation leader.”

The event is for Saskatchewan Workers’ Compensation Board staff, Ministry of Labour Relations and Workplace Safety staff and safety associations. Media are invited to attend.

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For more information, please contact:
Carolyn Van der Veen - WCB
306.535.2374
cvanderveen@wcbsask.com


WorkSafe Saskatchewan is an injury prevention and workplace safety partnership between the Saskatchewan Workers’ Compensation Board (WCB) and the Ministry of Labour Relations and Workplace Safety. Through the partnership, both agencies offer programs and support that help employers and workers develop workplace health and safety programs. You can reach WorkSafe Saskatchewan at 1.800.667.7590. Follow WorkSafe Saskatchewan on Twitter @worksafesask.

Mission: Zero is an initiative to eliminate all injuries in Saskatchewan. Launched in 2008, the Mission: Zero campaign and programs drive home the effects of injuries and the importance of safety and injury prevention at home, work and play. The intent behind Mission: Zerois to bring about a significant reduction in the provincial injury rate.

Safety Brings Success: Top 100 Saskatchewan Companies are COR® Certified

Oct
3

The SCSA would like to congratulate the Top 100 Saskatchewan Companies of 2018 recently announced in SaskBusiness magazine.  Several of these top businesses are accredited by the nationally-recognized Certificate of Recognition (COR®) program, which verifies that a company has a fully implemented health and safety management system. 

The Top 100 Saskatchewan Companies of 2018 categorized under the 'B - Building Construction' WCB rate code, include:

Graham

PCL Construction

Quorex

Northridge Development Corporation

Westridge Group of Companies

Alliance Energy Ltd.

"Companies that have grown into longterm, successful investments for shareholders consistently demonstrate patterns in the development of their successes related to overall organizational performance and safety management. These two areas seem to be inextricably linked," says Collin Pullar, president of the SCSA.

"Regardless of the number of employees a company has, or whether they belong to the mining, manufacturing, or construction industry -- successful businesses seem to have a way of effectively managing safety and increasing productivity in the process. It's no secret that companies serious about high performance are serious about safety," added Pullar. 

For a full list of Top 100 Saskatchewan Companies of 2018, follow this link: https://sunrisepublish.com/top-100/ 

For more information on the COR program, please visit: www.scsaonline.ca/programs/cor

WCB Announces Retirement of CEO

Oct
2

The Saskatchewan Workers' Compensation Board (WCB) has announced the retirement of CEO, Peter Federko effective May 31, 2019. Since 1994, Peter has played a critical role in the development and growth of the organization: successfully leading initiatives such as the provincial adoption of Mission: Zero and the creation of Safe Saskatchewan while seeing the provincial injury rate decrease; leading the organization towards greater financial stability, and stewarding through significant legislative changes and financial downturns. Read the full announcement from WCB Chair, Gord Dobrowolsky, below:

Board of Directors Announcement of CEO’s Retirement

Today the Saskatchewan Workers’ Compensation Board of Directors announced the retirement of our CEO, Peter Federko. It is with a mix of sincere gratitude and sadness that we share Peter’s retirement as CEO effective May 31, 2019.
We will sincerely miss Peter and his inspiring leadership, his exceptional attention to detail, his financial acumen and the depth that he brought throughout his entire tenure as WCB’s CEO.

Since 1994, Peter has played a critical role in the development and growth of the organization: successfully leading initiatives such as the provincial adoption of Mission: Zero and the creation of Safe Saskatchewan while seeing the provincial injury rate decrease; leading the organization towards greater financial stability, and stewarding through significant legislative changes and financial downturns. It was because of his stewardship that the WCB was able to absorb many changes while maintaining care of our customers and the resources that have been entrusted to the WCB.

On a personal note, as Chair of the Board, it has been my personal privilege to work closely with Peter for the past five years. With a heart of humility, Peter always generously shared his gifts and talents to those who work with him. We are indebted to him for his tremendous service to this organization.

Over the next few months, we will be conducting a search to find the new CEO of WCB. During this transition period, the Board of Directors will make it our priority to find the best individual to lead our organization. We will lean on the WCB’s Executive team to fully maintain a stable and effective organization for our customers, our staff and partners. Maintaining our focus on eliminating injuries and restoring abilities while improving customer service will be a key priority both during the transition and as a required skill-set of the new CEO.

The WCB has contracted Greg Fieger the Managing Director of Optimum Talent who is actively involved in the recruitment process of our new CEO. Interested candidates are asked to contact Greg directly. He can be reached via email at gfieger@optimumtalent.com or by phone at 306.949.8875 ext. 4501.

Again, we cannot thank Peter enough for the dedication, enthusiasm and the motivation he has given the WCB over the past 24 years. His humour and passion will be greatly missed by the Board, partners, and staff – most all of whom he knows by name. We look forward to garnering more from him in his final months here as the WCB continues to meet the needs of our customers throughout the province.
We look forward to our continued work and connection with Peter over the coming months and wish him the best of everything as he embarks on this new chapter.

Sincerely,


Gord Dobrowolsky, Chairperson
Board of Directors
Saskatchewan Workers’ Compensation Board

SCSA Hazard Assessment Tool Makes Safety More Manageable

Oct
2

MEDIA RELEASE

REGINA, SK, October 2, 2018 – The Saskatchewan Construction Safety Association (SCSA) is pleased to announce the addition of a Hazard Assessment Tool, now available on the latest version of its ‘Guide to OHS (Occupational Health and Safety) Legislation’ mobile app. Thousands of safety professionals have taken advantage of the SCSA’s free app – downloading it from either the Apple or Google stores – since its release in September of 2017.

“Many of our members in the construction industry have asked us to develop modern tools and resources to help them achieve their safety and business goals,” said Collin Pullar, president of the SCSA.

“Hazard assessments, in particular, are such an important aspect of a successful health and safety management system. Because of how frequent these evaluations are conducted in the field, having a tool available for workers at the touch of their fingertips is a huge step forward in making safety more accessible and maintainable,” added Pullar.

SCSA’s mobile Hazard Assessment Tool allows workers to easily select and enter information as they would with the paper version, without the hassle of maintaining paper documentation. Hazard Assessments can be conveniently saved, downloaded, and shared electronically, with the option of revising them at a later date. The mobile version contains all of the required fields to comply with the requirements of the Certificate of Recognition (COR®) program – a nationally-recognized accreditation to verify companies have implemented a comprehensive health and safety program.

The SCSA’s Guide to OHS Legislation app, which houses the Hazard Assessment Tool, now has a total of 30 safety topics. Five new topics were added to the latest version, including: Hoist, Cranes, and Lifting Devices; Hot Work; Housekeeping; Noise Control and Hearing Conservation; as well as Silica. Each safety topic outlines a summary of pertinent safety information, applicable legislation, and resources to help employers and employees understand and comply with their legislative obligations within their workplaces.

“Continually updating, improving, and making our app available at no cost to workers throughout the province, is just one of the ways we are using technology to come closer to achieving our vision of becoming the safest construction environment in Canada,” said Pullar.

“We hope to see more businesses take advantage of the consistency and convenience these tools can bring to ensuring projects are done on time, on budget, with zero injuries,” added Pullar.

To access the Hazard Assessment Tool and the new safety topics, available on the latest version of the SCSA’s Guide to OHS Legislation app, please visit the Apple or Google store from your internet-connected mobile device and type “SCSA” in the search field. If you already have the app downloaded, be sure to install the latest version to see these updates.

To learn more about the SCSA, please visit: www.scsaonline.ca

For more information or to arrange for an interview, please contact:

Lara Kuntz
Communications Coordinator
Saskatchewan Construction Safety Association
larak@scsaonline.ca
306.525.0175 ext. 241

SCSA ANNUAL CONSTRUCTING SAFETY LEADERSHIP AWARDS

Sep
28

Every year, the Saskatchewan Construction Safety Association (SCSA) is proud to honour individuals, companies, and committees, for their commitment to promoting effective health and safety management systems in the residential and commercial building construction industry in Saskatchewan. The SCSA presents these awards at its Annual General Meeting. All award recipients also receive recognition in various SCSA online and offline publications and promotions, including the SCSA Safety Advocate and Saskatchewan Business magazine.

All nomination questionnaires, forms, and letters must be fully completed, signed, and submitted to the SCSA Executive Assistant at eadmin@scsaonline.ca on or before December 31 of each year to be considered for the SCSA Annual Constructing Safety Leadership Awards. For more information, please contact  the SCSA Executive Assistant or call 306-525-0175.

For more information and to download the application guide, please visit: http://www.scsaonline.ca/safety-awards 

SCSA Chair’s Dinner: Honouring 2017 Board Members

Sep
27

Photo: (L-R) Dave Marriott, First Chairperson of SCSA; Hon. Don Morgan, Minister of Labour Relations and Workplace Safety; His Worship Mayor Michael Fougere; SCSA President, Collin Pullar; and SCSA Chairperson, Ryan Smotra, pose for a photo at the SCSA Chair’s Dinner at the Hotel Saskatchewan in Regina.

The Saskatchewan Construction Safety Association (SCSA) held a very special evening on September 5, 2018, recognizing the contributions of its past board members who have generously volunteered their time to carry on the legacy of the organization. 

The Honourable Don Morgan, Minister of Labour Relations and Workplace Safety; also responsible for Saskatchewan Workers’ Compensation Board (WCB), brought opening greetings along with His Worship, Michael Fougere, Mayor of Regina.

Laura Ross, MLA of Regina Rochdale, was also in attendance alongside WCB Chair, Gord Dobrowolsky and WCB board members, Larry Flowers and Garry Hamblin. Kevin Capewell of Rawlco Radio – an agency through which the SCSA has disseminated numerous safety messages throughout the province over the years – was the lively emcee for the evening.

Keynote speaker, Dave Marriott, the first Chairperson of the SCSA Board of Directors, spoke about the early days of working in construction in the 1970s when not everything about safety was completely understood in order to prevent injuries and fatalities on the job.

“My introduction to construction showed me just how dangerous a construction site could be. It seemed that significant events and injuries were almost expected. Minor injuries were poorly managed, and for a big jobsite to have a dozen or more lost time accidents, was the norm.” said Marriott.

Marriott’s efforts, combined with other industry professionals who came together in the early days to drastically improve safety awareness and injury prevention, ultimately led to the formation of the SCSA in 1995.

He argues that one of the best achievements of the SCSA was putting in place the Construction Safety Training System (CSTS) – now known as the Safety Construction Orientation Training (SCOTTM) program.

SCOT is a readily accessible online program provided to numerous highschools throughout the province at no cost for a one-year certification, and most recently, to active Saskatchewan Polytechnic students. Providing this safety construction orientation training supports the development of new construction workers and leaders; assisting to fulfill the SCSA’s vision of creating the safest construction environment in Canada.

Another hallmark program of the SCSA that strategically advances this vision is the Certificate of Recognition (COR®) program. Marriott also congratulated the efforts of the SCSA for the promotion of COR, especially with buyers of construction in recent months.

“I am extremely pleased to learn that the province of Saskatchewan will now require bidders to be COR certified for all projects over one million dollars. I just want to congratulate the provincial government on making this move and to this Association for keeping our original hopes alive and moving forward.”

Ryan Smotra – current Chair of the SCSA Board and recipient of an honourary ring that evening for his dedication to his role over the past five years – also spoke highly of the positive evolutions at the SCSA he has witnessed during his tenure. Chief among these was the extensive governance changes that were ratified at the 2018 SCSA AGM, including a unanimous vote to decrease the number of board member positions from 34 to 12.

“I am struck by two significant things – how supportive the board has been to work toward the necessary changes to improve our effectiveness. It has taken many members’ dedication and willingness to put in the time and do what is necessary to ensure the association continues to raise the bar to work toward achieving our goal to create the safest construction environment in Canada. In some cases that even meant voluntarily giving up their opportunity to be on the board,” said Smotra.

“ . . .second, the commitment of the people around the table to ensure we maintain that critical communication with our membership, to listen to their direction and represent their needs, then tirelessly work to meet their expectations and ensure our association is performing at the highest level,” added Smotra.

Smotra went on to share his excitement for the direction of the SCSA as the board continues to set priorities for improving safety culture in the province and watch them come into fruition. Some of these priorities include, continually improving engagement and opening new avenues of dialogue with members, as well as incorporating the latest innovations in technology in the classroom and on construction sites throughout the province.

Smotra continued, “Through these improvements to the diverse training methods that have, and will be implemented, our mission of ‘Constructing Safety Leadership’ within our industry has never been more apparent.”

The night concluded with SCSA President, Collin Pullar, presenting awards to the 2017 SCSA board members.

“Serving as president to this association has given me a neat opportunity to be a part of something that is critical to our economy, our social fabric, and success of every business in this province. It’s a noble cause and every board member that has served over the past 20-some years has helped to advance the goals that this organization’s founders believed in,” said Pullar in his closing remarks.

For more information on the SCSA Board of Directors, please visit www.scsaonline.ca/about-us/board-of-directors  

For more information on the SCSA Governance Committee changes, Committee, please visit www.scsaonline.ca/about-us/Governance-Commitee

A recording of this event will be available on our “SCSA Online” YouTube channel.

SCSA Chair’s Dinner Honourees: [2017 SCSA Board Members]: Caroyln Bagnell, Dorothy Carson, Alexandra Chase, Clayton Clark, Jeff Cochrane, Jason Davidson, Chris Guérette, David Hagen, Erin Heimbecker, Brian Hilderman, Treena Hirsch, Vernon Hunt, Jason McLeod, Len Mostoway, Gunnar Passmore, Kenric Phillips, Jeff Sweet, David Walker, and Pearl McNevin-Williams.

Ring Honouree: [2017 SCSA Chairperson]: Ryan Smotra

Cannabis Legalization and Employee Screening

Sep
25

With the expected legalization of recreational cannabis on October 17, 2018, employers may be left wondering what impact recreational cannabis may have on zero-tolerance policies, especially as they relate to pre-employment testing, prior to hire, or pre-access testing. Essentially, the contest in every alcohol and drug testing case is between the employer’s right and obligation to take reasonably necessary steps to maintain a safe workplace and the individual’s right to privacy.

Additionally, discrimination on the prohibited ground of disability in employment is contrary to the Saskatchewan Human Rights Code (SHRC), whether real or perceived. Even at the hiring stage, the duty to accommodate can apply. The two scenarios below depict pre-employment or pre-access screening for drugs and alcohol in non-unionized settings, where the potential for a human rights complaint is equally at issue in both.

Scenario 1: Pre-employment Screening – A job offer is conditional on a “clean” test

  • Potential hire has the choice whether to participate in the drug test, but knows that refusal to do so will result in the job offer being revoked. 
  • There is no employment relationship between the parties and arguably no damages could result if the job offer is revoked.
  • If an individual tests positive for a drug, and the employment offer is subsequently revoked, this could result in a complaint of either real or perceived disability. 
  • Even at the hiring stage, the duty to accommodate can apply – discrimination on the prohibited ground of disability in employment is contrary to the SHRC.

Scenario 2: Pre-access Screening – Worksite access by general contractor or owner conditional upon a “clean” test

  • Requires employees of its sub-contractor or trades to participate in mandatory testing prior to gaining access to the job site. 
  • Non-compliance or failed tests results in no access to the worksite/ inability to work on that particular project or contract.
  • Where an employee fails to test clean and is not permitted on the worksite, and subsequently has no available work, the sub-contractor will be liable to pay reasonable notice or severance to its employee, not the general contractor who required the testing.
  • Limiting access to private property to those who test clean is not in and of itself discriminatory and thus protected by the SHRC. So long as the refusal to permit access arises from the breach of the policy to test clean, and not from a real or perceived disability, any human rights complaint is unlikely to be successful.

What now?
It is arguable that like random testing, pre-employment testing suffers from two primary flaws. First, because such testing only indicates past use, no evidence that a person is, or will be, incapable of safely performing the essential duties of the job is provided. Second, the sanctions for a failed test are generally more stringent than needed to ensure a safe workplace. 

Polls show that between 20% and 40% of Canadians expect to occasionally use recreational cannabis. If it is not a strictly legal issue, it may very well become a human resource issue, if zero-tolerance policies for Tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) levels consistently weed out qualified and ready to work sub-contractors.

To the extent possible, sub-contractors and trades required to agree to stringent pre-access testing should inform themselves of developing industry standards respecting concentrations of THC that indicate impairment and seek modifications to general contractors’ drug and alcohol policies so (as much as possible) testing cut-off limits for cannabis are high enough so as not to “catch” occasional recreational users of cannabis, with the resulting refusal of access.

 

Source material provided by Miller Thomson.  Miller Thomson provides comprehensive business and legal help.  For more information on Cannabis legalization visit  http://www.millerthomson.com/en/our-people/jon-danyliw/

 

Changes to the SECOR® Program

Sep
11

A number of recommendations came out of a review of the Small Employer Certificate of Recognition (SECOR®) program that will serve to strengthen SECOR and provide it with the same integrity as COR. The SECOR program will be held to a very similar standard and allow SECOR companies to smoothly transition to the COR program as required or requested.

A number of industry-supported changes to the certification process, including training requirements, audit requirements, and the audit process, will gradually take place over the next 18 months. These changes apply to both registered and certified companies, and will be implemented between June of 2018 and December of 2020.

For more information, please visit www.scsaonline.ca/programs/secor or email scsaprograminfo@scsaonline.ca

Cannabis Member Survey Results

Aug
28

Given the approaching legalization of recreational cannabis, the Government of Saskatchewan seeks input from various stakeholders on possible legislative changes to Part III (Occupational Health and Safety) of The Saskatchewan Employment Act (the “Act”) and/or The Occupational Health and Safety Regulations, 1996 (the “Regulations”) to address impairment in the workplace. In light of the government’s request for input, the SCSA gathered feedback from its members on issues related to cannabis legalization and workplace impairment. 

From a total of 198 responses, the top three issues identified by our members as being important for consideration in any legislative proposals are as follows:

  1. The right of employers to perform drug and alcohol tests where there is reasonable cause to believe the employee is impaired on duty or when the worker was involved in a workplace accident or near-miss.
  2. Identifying a definitive threshold amount for legal sources of impairment that would indicate a pass or fail on a drug test.
  3. Clarifications of the duties imposed on employees to be fit for work and to disclose any impairment (e.g. taking prescribed medication).

In addition to asking our members to rate the issue most important to them, we sought feedback in the form of comments.  Common themes emerged, and we provide a sampling of comments to reflect those themes:

I believe that employers need to know the facts on testing for impairment regarding cannabis, as to date no definitive tests have been developed to positively identify impairment with this substance.

The problem with putting all the liability and responsibility on the employer instead of the employee.  Why doesn't an employer have the right to dismiss an employee that doesn't care was happens to your business, or your bottom line.  If they don't show some responsibility for their actions it might be nice to have an employee that does.

How to define impairment.  As THC sticks to fat cells, it could be in your system long after the "high" is gone. Our research shows that an employee may not be impaired in the traditional sense but the worker's urine or blood test may show positive.  What is fair to worker/company?  Employers and supervisors cannot be drug detection experts.

The SCSA does not advocate for any specific legislative or policy change, and provided this input with a goal of contributing to the government’s knowledge and consideration of possible legislative amendments to the Act and/or the Regulations.

The SCSA is committed to ensuring construction employers and their employees in Saskatchewan have the knowledge and tools to ensure their individual workplaces are free from injury and workers are able make it home safely at the end of each work day.

For the full document

Making of SCSA’s Virtual Reality Training Tool

Aug
23

Today, August 23rd, 2018, the SCSA and White Rabbit VR –  a division of Sask-based media company, Twisted Pair – began the production phase of the highly-anticipated Virtual Reality (VR) construction safety training tool.

SCSA members and students will have the opportunity to be enveloped in a realistic 360 degree alternate reality for workplace training. This training tool allows users to spot hazards more effectively and in a variety of scenarios that wouldn’t be as readily available within the confines of traditional classroom training.  

The tool will also allow the SCSA to build stronger impressions in learning and give users experience in navigating dangerous situations and developing safety management systems in a safe way.

Below are some photos from the 360 degree photoshoot that is taking place throughout the day of various safety scenarios staged on a real construction site. These photos will later be stitched together and interactive elements overlaid to create the application for the VR tool.

     

 

Saskatchewan Construction Safety Association and Saskatchewan Polytechnic partner on safety training

Aug
22

Partnership provides School of Construction students with free safety training
 

MEDIA RELEASE

August 22, 2018 – Starting this September, the Saskatchewan Construction Safety Association (SCSA) is providing Saskatchewan Polytechnic’s School of Construction students with Safety Construction Orientation Training (SCOT®) at no cost. SCOT is recognized throughout the Saskatchewan construction industry as a base safety orientation in the residential, commercial, and industrial sectors.

“The SCSA is excited to work with Sask Polytech to provide safety construction orientation training to support the development of new construction workers and leaders. We look forward to future and ongoing collaboration with Sask Polytech – our partner in creating the safest construction environment in Canada,” says Collin Pullar, president of the SCSA.

With this agreement, active Sask Polytech students will receive a one-year certificate upon completion of SCOT, which includes WHMIS 2015. Students may choose to renew and receive a five-year certification at a nominal cost directly through the SCSA.

“This partnership with SCSA is an exciting opportunity,” says Paul Carter, dean of Sask Polytech’s School of Construction. “Sask Polytech takes our commitment to safety seriously. We are excited for students to participate in a provincially-recognized safety training course, which benefits not only students, but also employers.”

SCOT is an interactive, online training course that includes WHMIS 2015. The program is convenient, easy-to-use, and easily accessible as the program is available online. SCOT begins with an introductory module that describes the content, purpose, and important practical information necessary to help participants navigate through the training experience. 

 

The Saskatchewan Construction Safety Association (SCSA) is an industry-funded, membership-based, non-profit organization that provides cost-effective, accessible safety training advice to nearly 10,000 employers and their employees in the construction industry throughout Saskatchewan to reduce the human and financial losses associated with injuries.  The SCSA’s mission is constructing safety leadership.

Saskatchewan Polytechnic serves 28,000 distinct students through applied learning opportunities at campuses in Moose Jaw, Prince Albert, Regina and Saskatoon, and through extensive distance education opportunities. Programs serve every economic and public service sector. As a polytechnic, the organization provides the depth of learning appropriate to employer and student needs, including certificate, diploma and degree programs, and apprenticeship training. Saskatchewan Polytechnic engages in applied research, drawing on faculty expertise to support innovation by employers, and providing students the opportunity to develop critical thinking skills.

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For more information, contact:

Brianna Bergeron
Saskatchewan Polytechnic Communications and Marketing
Office: 306-659-3866
Cell: 306-250-3978
Email: brianna.bergeron@saskpolytech.ca

Information about Saskatchewan Polytechnic can be found at www.saskpolytech.ca

Lara Kuntz
Communications Coordinator
Saskatchewan Construction Safety Association
306.525.0175 ext. 241
larak@scsaonline.ca

Information about the Saskatchewan Construction Safety Association can be found at www.scsaonline.ca

SCSA Welcomes Two New Board Members

Aug
17

From the Desk of the SCSA Board Chair

On behalf of the SCSA Board of Directors, I would like to welcome Karen Low of Merit Contractors Association of Saskatchewan and Aaron Yohnke of PCL Construction Management Inc. to the Board. The SCSA Board is excited about the strength of experience, and influence that Karen and Aaron bring to the industry.  In order to fill existing vacancies on our Board, their appointments take effect immediately and will be ratified, at the 2019 AGM.  Thank you Karen and Aaron for your commitment to safety and we look forward to working together as leaders.

– Ryan Smotra

For more information regarding the SCSA Board, please visit our website www.scsaonline.ca/about-us/Governance-Commitee

 

 

Karen Low

Karen Low is the President of Merit Contractors Association of Saskatchewan.  Based in Prince Albert, Merit Saskatchewan provides a variety of services to the open shop construction sector, which comprises 85% of the contractors currently operating in the province.  Merit’s suite of services include premium benefit plans designed for construction employees, apprenticeship bursaries, industry training, and open shop advocacy.

Born, raised and life-long resident of Saskatchewan, there is no doubting Karen’s commitment to and passion for our province.  Graduating from the University of Saskatchewan with a Bachelor’s degree in Commerce (Finance major), she continued her learning with a diploma in credit management, and certification in logistics management.  Karen has taken on a variety of challenges over her career, including Assistant Director of a provincially-funded commercial lending program for northern Saskatchewan, Program Head of the province’s first full time training program for entrepreneurs through Sask Polytechnic, and small business consultant.  Perhaps most challenging, however, is her role as co-owner of a plumbing and heating contracting business in Prince Albert. 

Karen’s association with Merit started in 2000 when she and her husband became association members.   She took on the role of Merit Saskatchewan‘s President in 2009.  She has established deep roots in the construction community as both of her children are also in the engineering field.   Her dedication to both Merit and the construction industry is evident in the many roles she’s taken on in advocating for contactors, including a member of the Federal Minster’s Committee on the Underground Economy, and Director for the Canadian Labour Watch Association.

Aaron Yohnke

As district manager, Aaron is responsible for PCL Construction Management Inc. (Saskatoon) operations in Central and Northern Saskatchewan. For more than 15 years, Aaron has contributed to the success of construction teams and projects in Saskatchewan, Manitoba, Alberta, the Northwest Territories, and Ontario. He has experience in delivering traditional bid-build, design-build, P3, GMP, and CM-type agreements. Aaron brings a diversified background to his role, having previously held positions as estimator, project manager, special projects manager, construction manager, and operations manager. Aaron’s cross-sector experience covers such areas as health-care, commercial, institutional construction, civil infrastructure, pre-engineered buildings, retail, water treatment, interior renovation, and light industrial, and varies in scope from smaller, unique projects to mega developments. Aaron is Gold Seal certified in project management by the Canadian Construction Association. Born and raised in Saskatoon, Aaron is active in the community, participating in industry and charitable associations. Aaron is passionate about health, safety and the environment as well as generally augmenting the culture that exists across all projects and sites in Saskatchewan.  

 

Saskatchewan Apprenticeship to Launch New IT System Next Year

Aug
9

The Saskatchewan Apprenticeship and Trade Certification Commission (SATCC) is getting ready to launch a new, client-facing IT system that will provide SATCC clients, including Saskatchewan apprentices, employers and training providers, with faster, more efficient service.

Apprentices will be able to self-register for training and employers will be able to easily monitor and track their apprentices’ training status. In other words, users of the apprenticeship system will be able to interact with the SATCC and access their information online, rather than having to request information directly from an SATCC staff member.

The Apprenticeship Management System (AMS) is a multi-province project, involving Saskatchewan, Manitoba and the four Atlantic provinces. Saskatchewan’s launch date is tentatively set for late fall 2019.

"This is a positive step forward for our organization," SATCC CEO Jeff Ritter said. "Our clients have been asking for the ability to self-serve and more easily access information. This system will meet that demand."

According to the SATCC’s 2017 Employer and Apprentice Satisfaction Survey data, Saskatchewan employers and apprentices want to access SATCC information and services online. In fact, the majority of employer respondents stated they would like to complete all services with the SATCC online and at least half of apprentice respondents said they would like to complete all services online.

Right now, the apprenticeship system in Saskatchewan is primarily a paper-based system. AMS will modernize SATCC’s processes, allowing customers to register apprenticeship contracts, pay fees and technical training tuition, update personal or business information and submit trade time hours online through AMS.

"We value the exceptional customer service we provide to our clients," said Ritter. "With this new system, we will strive to maintain the highest levels of service. Our clients will still be able to call us, or walk into one of our offices, to ask questions or discuss their individual apprenticeships. We are still going to have staff members visiting employers. The new IT system will provide faster, on-demand service, but that warm, personalized service that our staff members provide isn’t going to go away once the system is introduced."

In 2017, 87 per cent of apprentices who responded to the SATCC’s Satisfaction Surveys agreed staff members are friendly and courteous, while 96 per cent of employers agreed as well. Ninety-three per cent of apprentice respondents were satisfied with SATCC services and 94 per cent of employer respondents were satisfied with SATCC services.

The SATCC is committed to providing its stakeholders with regular updates on the system. Communication will increase as the fall 2019 launch date approaches.

In the meantime, if you have any questions or comments, please email Saskatchewan’s AMS project team at satccams@gov.sk.ca

Apprenticeship in Action

Aug
8

The Summer 2018 edition of the Saskatchewan Apprenticeship newsletter – Apprenticeship in Action – is now available. Read about Cassandra Lasko, Journeyperson Carpenter and recipient of the 2017 Wendy Davis Memorial Scholarship – the scholarship the Saskatchewan Apprenticeship and Trade Certification Commission (SATCC) awards to the female in a traditionally male trade who achieved the highest mark on the Journeyperson exam.

Read out about all of the sponsorship opportunities and benefits of getting involved in the 2018 Apprenticeship Awards held on Friday, November 2, 2018.

The newsletter is available through the SATCC website, or through this direct link

One Woman’s Dream: Valerie Overend

Jul
18

When Valerie Overend started working towards her carpentry apprenticeship, at that time, she was the only woman in the province enrolled in the program. She attained her red seal carpentry papers in 1989 and by that time, there were fewer than 10 women in the carpentry trade across the whole province. It was also during this time in her life that she became involved in the Girls Entering Trades and Technology (GETT) camp. Her goal was to teach women how to get into the trades. First she focussed on carpentry, then she expanded later into other trades.

Valerie was head hunted to be a female role model in the province by Kathy Stedwill. Kathy had just came back from a holiday to London, ON where she had had an opportunity to visit Fanshwe College, home to the first GETT camp. Upon her return, Kathy set up a steering committee to establish GETT camps in Saskatchewan. 

Partnerships were sought from school boards, the apprentice branch, safety associations, SIAST, and Education Equity Programs. Over the years, Valerie has incorporated numerous other programs, some examples of these are:

  • An alumni program for girls in GETT camps 
  • A one day camp for the GETT camp from grade 9 to grade 12 this tells you if the girls are serious of entering the trades (girls who have previously attended GETT camp)
  • A GETT kindergarten project, university girls are hired (girls who have previously attended GETT camp) take little toolboxes to over 60 classroom’s and conduct presentations in May and June every year (girls only classrooms) to expose the girls at a young age to trades
  • Women and Technology was created in 2000
  • She implemented a provincial coordinators Sask. (WITTT) Women Working in Trades and Technology support group
  • Composed a dragon team-on home renovations
  • Women Hands on Meetings
  • Sask. WITT- this is used as a model for SIAST/SaskPolytechnic
  • Ivolvement of Aboriginal women in to the trades and technology

Valerie’s goal was to introduce girls to careers in the trades and technology, in a safe setting. She wanted to give young women an opportunity to build their confidence, introduce them to the names of tools, and introduce safety and the importance of working safely.

For 5 years Valerie ran the Sask. WITT program, outside of the confines of the SIAST carpentry program. It was a cross training exercise to get women interested in trades. Although Valerie did not work at SIAST full-time, she was granted access to resources and an office. With a great support system, partnerships’ and perseverance, Valerie has succeeded in bringing her vision to life and Valerie’s dream has come full circle in that her granddaughter participated in Regina’s GETT camp this year.

Seeking Member Input on Cannabis Legalization

Jul
12

Given the approaching legalization of recreational cannabis, the Government of Saskatchewan is looking for input on possible legislative changes to the occupational health and safety portions of The Saskatchewan Employment Act  and/or The Occupational Health and Safety Regulations, 1996 to address impairment in the workplace.  The Saskatchewan Construction Safety Association is considering preparing and submitting a document that outlines its members' concerns around impairment in the workplace. 

With respect to your thoughts about impairment in the workplace, please submit your concerns about the issues that you think should be included or addressed in any legislative proposal or changes.

Request for Proposal: SCSA Looking to Refresh Several Demos

Jun
26

In 2017 SCSA Safety Advisors conducted just under 1,000 demos in 500 companies in the construction industry, reaching about 10,000 workers and youth. If you have the expertise to help us rebuild/refresh our demos, respond to our RFP visit - www.scsaonline.ca/about-us/request-for-proposals

SCSA Fall Protection Tour Demonstrates Safety

Jun
19

Andrew Hann was on his way to a promising career when a workplace accident took his life in 2013 — he was just 25 years old.

Hann was a scaffolder working at a mine southwest of Saskatoon when he fell. On that day, Hann had gone for lunch but when he returned he didn’t have his fall protection gear with him. No one will know why he felt safe enough to continue with his work because Andrew Hann fell through an open hole in the scaffold and died.

His family wanted to turn their tragedy into an opportunity to promote workplace safety. In Andrew’s name a fall protection demonstration trailer was donated to the Saskatchewan Construction Safety Association (SCSA) and the Andrew Hann Memorial Scholarship was created for Occupational Health and Safety Practitioner program students at Saskatchewan Polytechnic.

Today, the trailer visits work sites, is present at safety meetings, North American Occupational Safety and Health (NAOSH) events and at industry safety days across Saskatchewan. Included with this trailer is an educational component and a visual component, both of which are intended to deliver impactful reminders of the importance of proper fall protection equipment.

“The point of this (Andrew Hahn) story is that this kind of tragedy can be prevented,” says Mike Moore, a safety advisor with SCSA. Moore goes on to say, “We can’t turn back time, but we can learn from this horrible incident. In fall protection training, we learn a lot of stuff in theory, but this (trailer) is a practical exercise that is visual. You can tell me things over and over, but when you show me, I believe what I see.”

During the SCSA Fall Protection demonstration, observers are introduced to a 165-pound Rescue Randy mannequin that is placed in fall protection safety gear and used in various demonstrations. With it, there’s an interactive discussion centred on proper anchor points and connecting components like lanyards and proper fits for harnesses.

The Rescue Randy is raised with a pulley system and dropped five feet.

“When he (Rescue Randy) hits, the actual impact is seen and heard,” Moore explains. In the first fall, there is no shock absorber in the lanyard. In the second fall, where the shock absorber is used, the force applied to the body are significantly less. In each demonstration the force is measured and shared with observers.

Moore shares that the reactions from observers vary, but mostly there’s a lot of shock and awe, with many leaving the demonstration with an appreciation for fall protection safety gear and practices.

“Our future construction workers really see just how important it is to use the right system for fall protection. For more experienced workers that may never use a system or have become complacent, we get to reapply this learning with them.

“Whether I’m 16 or 65, if I fall from 25 feet the outcome is not going to be very good,” Moore says. “The message is to make sure you trust your gut and don’t do anything you’re not comfortable doing. And just because you’re comfortable doesn’t necessarily mean you’re properly trained.”

The fall protection demonstration is one of six safety demonstrations offered by the SCSA. In 2017 SCSA Safety Advisors conducted just under 1,000 demos in 500 companies in the construction industry, reaching about 10,000 workers and youth.

To book a fall protection demonstration, visit - www.scsaonline.ca/media/safety-demos

To hear SCSA President, Collin Pullar in conversation with Sam Maciag on the topic, checkout our YouTube channel

For additional resources, like Tool Box Talks, visit - www.scsaonline.ca/resources

Ninth Annual Saskatchewan Health & Safety Leadership Charter Event, June 13, 2018

Jun
15

The ninth annual Saskatchewan Health & Safety Leadership Charter event was held on June 13, 2018 with more than 260 people from a diverse array of industry sectors in attendance. This Saskatchewan-made leadership Charter supports the continuous improvement of healthy and safe workplaces and communities throughout our great province, and is founded on the principle that the effective management of health, safety, and wellness, is essential to the operation of a successful business. Leaders from 50 organizations declared their commitment to the health and safety of their employees and communities by signing the Charter this year.

Pictured (left to right): SCSA's Sherry Torgerson, Executive Assistant; Sebastian Marktanner, Senior Safety Advisor; and Jacob Zaba, Human Resources Administrator

Nominate your firm for the 2018 Celebrate Success Business Award in Safety

Jun
14

The Yorkton Chamber of Commerce announces that nominations are now open for the 2018 Celebrate Success Business Awards.  Awards will be presented in eleven categories plus the Small and Large Business of the Year Awards.

Mike Popowich, President of the Yorkton Chamber indicated that the nomination process is open to the public but he also encourages owners and managers to nominate their own businesses.  “No one knows your business better than you do,” he said.  “We therefore encourage businesses to nominate themselves for one of these prestigious awards”.

Donna Brothwell, Chair of the Events committee, explained the nomination process.  “The nomination form is on-line on the Chamber’s website at www.yorktonchamber.com,” she said.

 “Deadline for submitting nominations is Noon Aug 27.  Once a nomination form is received, the Chamber staff will contact the nominated business and ask if it will accept the nomination.  If it accepts, it will receive a Nominee Package that is easy to complete.”   Completed Nominee Packages are due NOON September 7.

After that date, an independent Judging Panel will be convened to select the finalists and recipients in each of the categories.  They will also select, from all the completed Nominee Packages,  the Small and Large Businesses of the Year Award sponsored by

Collins Barrow PQ LLP - the. Patron Sponsor.

For information about the nomination process or how to nominate a business, contact the Chamber office.

Award Categories for which nominations will be accepted:

  • Award of Excellence sponsored by Canadian Western Bank
  • Business Growth & Expansion sponsored by BMO Bank of Montreal
  • Community Involvement sponsored by Cornerstone Credit Union
  • Community Merit sponsored by SaskTel
  • Customer Service sponsored by RBC Royal Bank
  • Education & Training sponsored by Parkland College
  • Marketing – NEW sponsored by CIBC
  • New Business Venture sponsored by Key Auto Group
  • Property Restoration sponsored by City of Yorkton
  • Safety sponsored by Mission Zero/Work Safe
  • Young Entrepreneur sponsored by TD

The 13th Celebrate Success Business Awards will be presented October 3.

-30-

For more information contact: Juanita Polegi, Executive Director  306-783-4368

CTV Morning Live

Jun
4

On Monday, June 4th SCSA President, Collin Pullar appeared on CTV Morning LIVE with Lyle Hewitt, Director of Marketing for White Rabbit VR. The SCSA is excited to announce a new partnership with White Rabbit VR, a division of Twisted Pair Productions to develop 360 degree Virtual Reality experiences for the safety training environment in Saskatchewan as virtual reality takes the way safety is taught – in the classroom, on the work site, in demos – to a whole new level. Virtual reality gives the user experience in navigating dangerous situations and developing safety management systems in a safe way. To view the full press release visit - www.scsaonline.ca/news/news-feed/gamechanger-scsa-expands-app-explores-virtual-reality

‘Can I bring cannabis to the company party?’: Policies for marijuana legalization

May
31

To download Amy Groothuis' Presentation, click here

Cannabis Legalization

Cannabis is set to be legalized this summer in Canada, and it’s opening a new realm of questions for employers and staff. How might an employer respond if he or she is approached by an employee and asked, “Can I bring cannabis to the company party?”

“When it becomes legal, we might not have a huge spike of people showing up to work impaired, but there might be a shift in societal expectation of cannabis use,” explained Jon Danyliw, an associate for Miller Thomson law firm in Saskatoon.

Danyliw spoke about cannabis in the workplace at the Construction Law Conference in Saskatoon in April. The message: It’s a good time to implement a policy if there isn’t one in place. Better yet, it’s time to review the current policy.

Cannabis Impairment

Employers have a duty to provide a safe workplace, and it poses a potential problem if impaired individuals perform jobs that could endanger other employees or members of the public. “Just like alcohol, employees can’t be impaired by cannabis at work,” Danyliw said.

If a charge results from an accident, employers must prove they acted with due diligence to prevent that situation. Employers control the workplace, therefore, it’s their responsibility to ensure that staff aren’t impaired at work. That means recognizing what marijuana impairment looks like and how to handle it.

There are two main chemicals in cannabis: THC (tetrahydrocannabinol) is the substance that causes impairment, while CBD (cannabidiol) has been researched for therapeutic uses, and studies show it doesn’t cause impairment. In fact, some studies indicate CBD can decrease the effects of THC.

The type of impairment also depends on how the marijuana is consumed. If it’s smoked, the onset is rapid and peaks after 30 minutes, with a duration of two to four hours. If it’s ingested, the onset is slower and the effects can last much longer.

THC can stay in your body for a very long time -- it can be detected up to a week later -- and current testing only tells you if it has been used recently, not whether someone is impaired at this moment, like breathalyzers for alcohol. Also, unlike alcohol, there’s no generally accepted level of THC that’s going to deem a user impaired. A new testing system allows for a saliva test that can say whether someone ingested THC in the past eight hours, but it’s not widely used yet.

Signs of marijuana use:

●          Smells like marijuana

●          Bloodshot eyes

●          Increased appetite

●          Memory impairment

●          Difficulty paying attention or solving problems

●          Uncoordinated

●          Euphoria

How to handle an impaired worker

If you notice an employee acting differently and displaying signs of marijuana use, you have reasonable cause to ask them if they’ve been using. Workers have a duty to disclose if they’re using any kind of drug that might impair them, including prescriptions.

It’s helpful to have more than one person on site with training, so that if a manager identifies someone who they think is impaired, someone else can also make a judgement before that person is sent for testing.

If a manager is talking to that person about why they’ve been asked if they’re impaired, that should all be recorded in an incident report. The union also should be alerted.

“Memory changes over time,” Danyliw said. “It’s important to have that report.”

The policy should include that a worker will be considered unfit for work if they’ve used within eight hours before their shift, and if it’s determined that they have used, they might be sent home. The policy also should include how the employer determines impairment, who it will be reported to, and who will be present.

“It’s the employee’s well-being and safety that’s important here,” Danyliw said. “It’s not to find ways to punish employees, though discipline may result.”

Employers are encouraged to gather information in an empathetic and supportive way. If employees don’t have a safe person to go to, they might be scared to tell their employer if they have used or are dependent on cannabis, which could lead to concealed use and an impaired person on your work site.

Some companies state they take a zero-tolerance approach to drug or alcohol use, but that stance is actually more difficult to apply in practice.

Random drug testing generally isn’t upheld as legal, Danyliw said. It’s difficult to have a court or human rights commission uphold a random drug testing policy if a business were to be challenged on their use of such a system. Any kind of testing is only accepted if safety is part of the job.

Accommodating addictions

Addictions have been held by human rights commissions and courts to be a disability by law. That means if an employee admits to his or her employer that he or she has an addiction, the employer has a duty to accommodate them.

How you accommodate them, and for how long, will depend on the nature of the employer. If accommodating them causes “undue hardship,” you’re released from that duty, though the concept of undue hardship will differ depending on the company.

Danyliw gave the example of a small electrician company with six staff members: If one of those staff members is identified as having addictions issues, it would be more difficult for such a small company to accommodate them. A larger employer -- like City of Saskatoon, for example -- would likely have to find other work for that person to do.

It’s not always possible to give the employee what he or she wants when you’re accommodating them -- that’s up to the employer to decide subject to the employer’s duty to make a reasonable accommodation for that person.

A company’s policies should address accommodation. How would you respond if an employee disclosed a substance abuse problem to you?

“It’s the process that you put in place that’s going to be important,” Danyliw said. “Employers who are aware of risks take steps to minimize them.… those companies are less likely to deal with fatalities and safety issues in the workplace.”

 

The Saskatchewan Construction Safety Association (SCSA) is an industry-funded non-profit organization that provides cost-effective and accessible safety training and advice to employers and employees throughout the province.  Visit www.scsaonline.ca for more information. Miller Thomson provides comprehensive business and legal help.  For more information on Cannabis legalization visit /www.millerthomson.com/en/our-people/jon-danyliw/

 

GAMEchanger: SCSA Expands App, Explores Virtual Reality

May
10

Media Release
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
May 10, 2018

GAMEchanger: SCSA Expands App, Explores Virtual Reality

REGINA, SK, May 10, 2018 – Today the SCSA is proud to make two announcements. First, in response to member feedback, five additional topics have been added to the Guide to OHS Legislation app that was released last September – Harassment; Working Alone; First Aid; Duties of the Employer, Supervisor, Contractor and Prime Contractor; and Protection for Electrical Workers. Thousands have taken advantage of this free app, downloading it from either the Apple or Google stores.

Second, the SCSA is excited to announce a new partnership with White Rabbit VR, a division of Twisted Pair Productions to develop 360 degree Virtual Reality experiences for the safety training environment in Saskatchewan.

“One of the cool things about this partnership is that virtual reality takes the way we teach – in the classroom, on the work site, in demos – to a whole new level,” explains, Collin Pullar, “our Board is excited to bring these tools to the industry. This changes the game for us in so far as building stronger impressions in learning. It gives the user experience in navigating dangerous situations and developing safety management systems in a safe way.”

“We always remind our clients that VR is not the technology of tomorrow – its the technology of today. Businesses that have used it have proven VR is effective in cutting costs, improving safety and improving learner retention. We would like to thank SCSA for the opportunity to bring this technology to Saskatchewan,” said Mike MacNaughton, president and CEO of Twisted Pair / White Rabbit VR.

The Saskatchewan Construction Safety Association was founded by a group of business leaders who stepped up and voiced the opinion that things had to change, too many people were getting injured and losing their lives at work. They felt that they could do things differently when it came to safety and they did. The organization today, is a legacy of that leadership and the commitment to safety that the founding companies embraced, has changed the economy with respect to the costs associated with injuries and fatalities.

SCSA President, Collin Pullar, elaborates, “We have learned over the years telling people how to stay safe isn’t enough to overhaul a culture that has historically struggled with safety, anything that is going to affect a change in an organization and a province, has to be done at the leadership level. Our new mission, Constructing Safety Leadership, is entirely about supporting safety leaders.” The SCSA has recently gone through some major changes as an organization. A key strategic focus of the SCSA Board of Directors has been modernizing services for members represented the construction industry, be that current best practices, up-to-date tools or technological innovations.

About the Saskatchewan Construction Safety Association

The Saskatchewan Construction Safety Association (SCSA) is an industry-funded, membership-based, non-profit organization that provides cost-effective, accessible safety training and advice to employers and employees in the construction industry throughout the province to reduce the human and financial losses associated with injuries. Registered March 20, 1998 the SCSA is, and has been since inception, committed to injury prevention. Serving almost 10,000 member companies, the major business units of the association are Advisory Services, Business Development, Corporate Services, Program Services and Training. 

About White Rabbit VR, a division of Twisted Pair Productions

White Rabbit VR is a Regina-based enterprise offering a full range of virtual reality solutions including museum displays, tourism videos and training applications. It’s parent company, Twisted Pair Productions, has over 25 years of experience in media production and launched the VR division in 2016.

For more information, or to arrange for an interview with Collin Pullar, please contact:

Terri Larsen
Publications and Communications Coordinator

Saskatchewan Construction Safety Association
terril@scsaonline.ca
306.525.0175 ext. 232

Saskatchewan puts strong emphasis on construction safety certification

May
3

Reprinted from the Regina Leader-Post
3 May 2018
by Jonathan Hamelin

As of April 1, 2019, a Certificate of Recognition (COR®) or Small Employer Certificate of Recognition (SECOR®) certification – or equivalent acknowledged by the Saskatchewan Construction Safety Association (SCSA) – will be a requirement in all construction contracts exceeding $1 million in value.

Starting next year, safety will become an even bigger priority on major construction sites in Saskatchewan.

The Saskatchewan Ministry of Central Services has announced that as of April 1, 2019, a policy will be in place that will see Certificate of Recognition (COR®) or Small Employer Certificate of Recognition (SECOR®) certification – or equivalent acknowledged by the Saskatchewan Construction Safety Association (SCSA) – as a requirement in all construction contracts expected to exceed $1 million in value.

As SCSA president Collin Pullar explains, the SCSA has been assisting the Ministry of Central Services with this policy development for some time and supported their consultations with other representatives in the industry. He said the policy change is a breath of fresh air.

“There’s a lot of excitement about the adoption of COR® as a principle measurement in procurement,” Pullar said. “Construction companies in Saskatchewan who have already made an investment in safety feel that it will give them an opportunity to get a return on their investment and provide a level playing field.

“For the construction buyers, this policy change will give them more confidence about the companies they are hiring for projects. These buyers are likely aware that companies that are careful and methodical with their safety management are careful and methodical about other aspects of business: marketing, financial management, HR, ethics, risk management. They feel their overall risk is coming down.”

COR® is an occupational health and safety program designation verifying that a company has a fully-implemented health and safety program that meets national standards. It’s endorsed by the SCSA and participating members of the Canadian Federation of Construction Safety Associations.

SECOR® is a program with similar values geared toward companies with nine or less employees (including sub-contractors) and is often a stepping-stone for smaller companies to achieving COR® certification. There are almost 1,000 companies in Saskatchewan who have achieved nationally accredited safety certification through the SCSA.

Pullar said COR® certification brings many benefits to the companies in addition to meeting the requirements under the upcoming policy.

“COR® certification helps to identify weaknesses that can lead to really costly injuries,” Pullar said. “When somebody gets hurt on the job, it’s common that a piece of equipment or material will also be damaged along the way. This adds to the overall cost and risk to a company.

“COR® is a great indicator to whether a company has the tools in place and has the practices in place to reduce the risk of incidents happening. Incidents lead to delays and sometimes very dissatisfied customers because of it.”

Once applying to COR®, companies have to complete four mandatory safety courses. With the knowledge gained from these lessons, companies will then need to develop and implement a quality safety program. For this process, the SCSA makes safety advisors available to provide guidance and support.

Pullar said that COR® helps companies create effective safety plans that cover a wide range of scenarios.

“By creating a plan, companies will be mapping out how they promote a safe work environment, assess and control hazards, investigate incidents, comply with regulations and train employees,” Pullar said. “A lot of times, there are things completely outside of a company’s control such as weather that suddenly pops up, but businesses can still have a plan to deal with inclement weather or sudden storms.

“Safety programs look different depending on the type of company and how they run their business; an interior design and construction company is going to have different hazards it will be dealing with than one that’s building an office tower.”

Once developing a plan, a company must undergo and pass an external health and safety audit before becoming a COR® certified company. To maintain certification, companies must submit a satisfactory internal or external audit annually.

For more information on COR® and safety certification, visit www.scsaonline.ca.

WCB Annual General Meeting 2018

May
2

News Release - For Immediate Release
May 2, 2018                       


REGINA, SK – Today the Saskatchewan Workers’ Compensation Board (WCB) held its Annual General Meeting in Saskatoon and in Regina on Thursday, May 3. WCB CEO Peter Federko shared the 2017 financial and operating results with Saskatchewan workers, employers and partners.  

“The WCB maintains a solid financial position at year end and we remain financially stable and fully funded at December 31, 2017,” said Federko. “The WCB’s 2017 funded position was 117.8 per cent at year end, which is within the targeted range of 105 to 120 per cent.”

This is the guarantee made to injured workers – that benefits and programs will be available when a workplace injury occurs. It also affirms the WCB’s commitment to employers and workers that the system will be run effectively and efficiently.

Federko gave an overview of the WCB’s successes throughout 2017 and also shared challenges for the coming years.

“Having 88 percent of employers achieve Mission: Zero for two years in a row demonstrates what workers, employers and provincial leaders can accomplish when we work together on workplace safety,” said Federko. “However, 22,247 workers were injured in Saskatchewan workplaces in 2017 and 27 individuals lost their lives in workplace incidents, which is unacceptable. Even one injury is too many, and we must continue to make our workplaces safer.”

In 2016, the WCB announced its journey of continuous improvement with the primary focus of improving customer service, which Federko said was also a primary focus throughout 2017.

“We recognize that the systemic, lasting and meaningful customer service improvements that we are striving for requires us as leaders to create an environment where every staff members’ input is valued and they are empowered to improve their processes,” Federko said.

At the AGM, Federko spoke to the WCB’s mission and unveiled the revised vision to eliminate injuries and restore abilities.

“Our mission, which is to be a customer-centric organization through a culture of continuous process improvement, provides the means by which we will reach our vision to eliminate injuries and restore abilities,”
Federko said. “To achieve this, we have outlined our key strategic objectives going forward into 2021. These objectives represent the highest level of strategic goals for the WCB and achieving these objectives requires the full engagement of the WCB staff in the coming years.”  

The WCB’s 2019-2021 Strategic and Operation Plan is available at www.wcbsask.com.

Media Contact:
Carolyn Van der Veen - WCB Director, Communications
cvanderveen@wcbsask.com

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