Tom Teahen, President and Chief Executive Officer of the Workplace Safety & Insurance Board of Ontario (WSIB) is pleased to announce that our friend, colleague and leader Elizabeth Witmer has been re-appointed to a three year term as Chair of the WSIB Board of Directors – a position she has filled with distinction since 2012.
“Elizabeth has offered strong leadership in setting a path that serves injured workers well and ensures stable insurance premiums for the employers who fund the system,” says Tom. “She has led the WSIB in making great gains toward financial sustainability, which allows us to focus on improving outcomes for injured workers well into the future. Her diligence in promoting health, safety and prevention in Ontario workplaces continues to inspire all of us.”
Under Elizabeth’s leadership, the WSIB – and the cause of safer workplaces – have made significant strides, with highlights including:
• A reduction of the WSIB’s unfunded liability from a high of $14.2 billion in 2011 down to $4 billion at the end of 2016;
• A 22 per cent reduction in lost-time injury claims between 2009 and 2015;
• The first employer insurance premium rate reduction since 2001 – up to 14 per cent; and,
• 92 per cent of injured workers back at work within one year with no wage loss.
Elizabeth has served the public for 36 years, including 22 years as Kitchener-Waterloo MPP. Over that period she served as Deputy Premier of Ontario, Minister of Labour, Health and Long-term Care, Environment and Education.
Her leadership has also been acknowledged with many awards, such as the Queen’s Golden and Diamond Jubilee Medals, the Social Work Doctors’ Award, the Kitchener-Waterloo Citizen of the Year Award, and being named an Honourary Nurse by the Registered Nurses’ Association of Ontario, among other citations.
“On behalf of the Board of Directors and WSIB staff, I congratulate Elizabeth on her reappointment,” Tom concludes. “Her leadership will be critical as we strive to meet the strategic objectives of our organization, including the enhancement of services to Ontario’s injured workers and employers.”