Internal Responsibility System
The Occupational Health & Safety Act, Ontario’s law that governs health & safety in the workplace, sets out legal duties & responsibilities for the employers, supervisors, workers to follow. The duties may not be complicated, but if they are not followed, injuries, illness or even the death of a worker can result. The legal duties and responsibilities of employers, supervisors and workers overlap and complement each other. Together, they create what’s known as the internal responsibility system or IRS.
Simply put, the IRS means everyone in the workplace has a role to play and a duty to actively ensure workers are safe. Every worker who sees a health & safety problem such as a hazard in the workplace has a duty to report the situation to management. Once a hazard is identified, the employer and supervisor have a duty to look at the problem and eliminate any hazard that could injure workers.
Employee Basic Rights on the Job:
1. Right to Know – You have the right to know about hazards in your workplace. Your employer should teach you how these hazards can affect you and your co-workers. The first step is to get proper health and safety training. This includes learning how to identify workplace hazards and knowing what to do if there is an incident or spill.
2. Right to Participate – You have the right to be involved in health and safety concerns in your workplace. You can participate through a safety representative at your workplace, or be involved in your workplace health and safety committee.
3. Right to Refuse Unsafe Work – You have the right to refuse unsafe work. If you have reasonable grounds to believe the work you do or the piece of equipment you use is unsafe, you can stop this work immediately.
*** Note: When placed on assignment through Motivated Staffing your MSI consultant will provide you with a job description and site specific instructions. When on the job, if you feel you are being asked to do work that is outside of the job description or the task could cause injury to yourself or to others, you have the right to refuse and must contact MSI consultant.