WorkSafeNB advises New Brunswick employers to be wary of misleading calls regarding Workplace Hazardous Materials Information System (WHMIS) training.
WorkSafeNB never calls workplaces and informs them that training is needed. If there are concerns at a workplace, a WorkSafeNB employee, with official identification, will visit the workplace and address the issues in person.
WHMIS is Canada’s hazard communication system, providing vital information about hazardous workplace materials. WHMIS requires suppliers of potentially hazardous materials convey specific information to employers, and that employers share that hazard information to their workers for their protection.
WorkSafeNB has learned firms are contacting New Brunswick employers and suggesting that their “employees must be retrained immediately” because of new regulations or changes to WHMIS.
Some representatives state that, if not retrained, employees will no longer have access to workers’ compensation benefits. Others suggest employers may be fined or face jail time.
WHMIS is changing but full implementation is not required until December 2018. Furthermore, workers’ compensation is a no-fault system. Compensation would never be denied to a worker injured on the job because of insufficient training.
These misleading – and sometimes aggressive ‒ sales calls are not new.
Last year, the Canadian Centre for Occupational Health and Safety (CCOHS) issued a warning about the aggressive sales tactics by some training providers. In some cases, it found companies were giving the impression they represented the government, and were indicating the training was required or endorsed by the provincial workplace jurisdiction.
Employers who want to file a complaint on the tactics of a company soliciting products and training services can contact the Canadian Anti-Fraud Centre at 1 888 495-8501.
For questions regarding New Brunswick’s workers’ compensation system or workplace training and prevention, call WorkSafeNB at 1 800 999-9775.