How can I change our safety policies at work?

Think about making a complaint to the Ministry of Labour

If your employer is not following the rules in the Ontario Health and Safety Act (OHSA), you can make a complaint to the Ministry of Labour.

The Ministry of Labour sends an inspector to your workplace to look at the situation and see if rules in the OHSA have been broken.

The inspector conducts an investigation where they gather facts and make a decision about the situation. They make a written report of their findings and give a copy of the report to your employer representative and your representative.

An inspector can order your employer to follow the law. If they think that you or other workers are in danger, they can also:

  • order your employer to fix any place, equipment, or thing
  • order that no one can use a piece of equipment until it’s fixed
  • stop the work in your workplace until the safety issue is fixed
  • order everyone to leave a dangerous place until the safety issue is fixed

You can call the Ministry of Labour’s Contact Centre at 1-877-202-0008 to make a complaint. You can call them any time. You don’t have to talk to your supervisor about the problem first.

Your employer is not allowed to punish you for making a complaint. You don’t have to tell the Ministry of Labour your name to make a complaint.

If you disagree with the inspector’s decision, you can ask the Ontario Labour Relations Board (OLRB) to change it. This is called appealing the decision of an inspector.

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