Training Ministry of Labour Inspectors

MinLThis week SASC Ottawa had the privilege of training inspectors from the Ontario Ministry of Labour on the connections of workplace sexual harassment and anti-oppression frameworks of practice.

The team of inspectors were an engaged group! Ontario’s Sexual Violence and Harassment Legislation becomes law September 8, 2016 (Read more at The Star.com).

Below you’ll find an excerpt from the Occupational Health & Safety Act in reference to workplace and sexual harassment.

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OCCUPATIONAL HEALTH AND SAFETY ACT

(1)  The definition of “workplace harassment” in subsection 1 (1) of the Occupational Health and Safety Act is repealed and the following substituted:

“workplace harassment” means,

(a)  engaging in a course of vexatious comment or conduct against a worker in a workplace that is known or ought reasonably to be known to be unwelcome, or

(b)  workplace sexual harassment; (“harcèlement au travail”)

(2)  Subsection 1 (1) of the Act is amended by adding the following definition:

“workplace sexual harassment” means,

(a)  engaging in a course of vexatious comment or conduct against a worker in a workplace because of sex, sexual orientation, gender identity or gender expression, where the course of comment or conduct is known or ought reasonably to be known to be unwelcome, or

(b)  making a sexual solicitation or advance where the person making the solicitation or advance is in a position to confer, grant or deny a benefit or advancement to the worker and the person knows or ought reasonably to know that the solicitation or advance is unwelcome; (“harcèlement sexuel au travail”)

(3)  Section 1 of the Act is amended by adding the following subsection:

Workplace harassment

(4)  A reasonable action taken by an employer or supervisor relating to the management and direction of workers or the workplace is not workplace harassment. 

2.  (1)  Subsection 32.0.6 (1) of the Act is repealed and the following substituted:

Program, harassment

(1)  An employer shall, in consultation with the committee or a health and safety representative, if any, develop and maintain a written program to implement the policy with respect to workplace harassment required under clause 32.0.1 (1) (b).

(2)  Clauses 32.0.6 (2) (b) and (c) of the Act are repealed and the following substituted:

(b)  include measures and procedures for workers to report incidents of workplace harassment to a person other than the employer or supervisor, if the employer or supervisor is the alleged harasser;

(c)  set out how incidents or complaints of workplace harassment will be investigated and dealt with;

(d)  set out how information obtained about an incident or complaint of workplace harassment, including identifying information about any individuals involved, will not be disclosed unless the disclosure is necessary for the purposes of investigating or taking corrective action with respect to the incident or complaint, or is otherwise required by law;

(e)  set out how a worker who has allegedly experienced workplace harassment and the alleged harasser, if he or she is a worker of the employer, will be informed of the results of the investigation and of any corrective action that has been taken or that will be taken as a result of the investigation; and

(f)  include any prescribed elements.