News from our Members

print

  • WSCC Lay Charges under the Mine Health & Safety Act December 1, 2021

    On November 10, 2021 the Workers’ Safety and Compensation Commission filed nine charges in the Northwest Territories’ Territorial Court under the Northwest Territories’ Mine Health & Safety Act.

    Continue reading →
  • Recent Amendments to Workers Compensation Act November 30, 2021
    New amendments to the Workers Compensation Act were recently approved in the fall 2021 sitting of the Legislative Assembly that help clarify and modernize the current legislation.
    Among the recent amendments to the Workers Compensation Act and regulation were changes to the indexation of compensation benefits, which would increase the amount of benefits paid to workers on long term benefits and survivors of fatally injured workers.
    Indexation refers to the adjustments made to workers compensation benefits to address increases in the cost of living each year. Previously, the legislation allowed for annual adjustments to extended wage loss benefits, pensions and survivor benefits based on 80% of the Consumer Price Index, up to 4% of the benefit amount. The adjustment is applied in July each year. The new changes would see the annual indexation of Extended Wage Loss, pension and survivor benefits increased to 100% of the annual change in the Consumer Price Index for PEI, up to a max of 4%.
    “These changes will help to ensure that WCB claimants and surviving family members can keep up with the rising costs of living,” said Jim MacPhee, Chair of the Workers Compensation Board of Prince Edward Island.
    Other notable amendments include revised definitions of “worker” and “accident”, as well as the removal of the exclusion of the construction industry under return to work provisions.
    These amendments to the Workers Compensation Act came into effect on November 17, 2021. Increases to the indexation of WCB extended wage loss, pension and survivor benefits will take place when the next annual calculation occurs on July 1, 2022.
    Source: WCB PEI
    Continue reading →
  • WSCC Announce 2022 Employer Assessment Rates November 25, 2021

    The Workers’ Safety and Compensation Commission of the Northwest Territories and Nunavut (WSCC) has announced that the average employer assessment rate or base rate will remain at the same level as last year.

    Continue reading →
  • WorkSafeBC reminding employers to prepare for emergencies, including evacuation and rescue November 16, 2021

    Employers must have plans to protect workers from impacts related to severe weather, natural disasters, and other emergencies. In response to another severe weather event yesterday — which caused flooding, evacuations, power outages, and road closures — WorkSafeBC is reminding employers of their obligations to be prepared for emergencies, including planning for evacuation, rescue, and re-entry, when safe to do so.

    “Emergency situations, such as severe flooding and landslides, can often occur with very little warning. That’s why employers need to conduct a risk assessment in any workplace in which a need to rescue or evacuate workers may arise,” says Al Johnson, Head of Prevention Services at WorkSafeBC. “The more you are prepared, the better you will be able to act and help ensure the safety of workers during an extreme weather event.”

    Under the Occupational Health and Safety Regulation — specifically sections 4.13 through 4.16 and Part 32 on emergency preparedness, response, evacuation, and rescue — all employers are expected to plan, prepare, and train their employees for all emergencies.

    Key requirements include:

    Conducting a risk assessment to determine the most likely emergency situations in the workplace. Engaging workers in the risk assessment.
    Developing appropriate written procedures for evacuation and rescue.
    Providing well-marked means of escape in the event of an emergency.
    Ensuring that emergency procedures consider the safety of disabled workers.
    Conducting drills at least once every year.
    Making sure all workers on site know how to respond to an incident. Providing training to employees in emergency procedures and fire prevention.
    Having first aid resources onsite.
    Providing appropriate personal protective equipment for workers doing the rescue or evacuation.
    Ensuring a sufficient number of workers are available to implement rescue procedures.
    “Creating an effective emergency response plan is one of the most important things employers can do to protect their workers during a natural disaster, or other emergency situation,” says Johnson.

    Severe weather — and the related risks — can occur year-round, as shown by the heatwaves and wildfires in B.C. this summer. The province is also at risk for earthquakes. However, an employer’s responsibility to prepare for emergencies is not limited to natural disasters or extreme weather. Fires, explosions, industrial accidents, and chemical spills can also pose serious threats to workers.

    WorkSafeBC has the following resource available for employers:

    Emergency Response Planning: 12 Tips for an Effective Emergency Response Plan.
    About WorkSafeBC
    WorkSafeBC engages workers and employers to prevent injury, disease, and disability in B.C. When work-related injuries or diseases occur, WorkSafeBC provides compensation and support to people in their recovery, rehabilitation, and safe return to work. We serve approximately 2.3 million workers and 255,000 employers across B.C.

    For more information, contact:

    Media Relations, WorkSafeBC
    Email: media@worksafebc.com
    Tel: 604.276.5157

    Source: WorkSafeBC

    Continue reading →
  • WSCC Media Release: Public engagement on proposed changes to pension system for workplace injuries November 15, 2021

    The Workers’ Safety and Compensation Commission (WSCC) is seeking public input on a proposal to change how pension benefits are calculated for workplace injuries.

    Under the present system, workers receive lifetime pension benefits if they have a workplace injury that results in a lasting loss of function after medical treatment or rehabilitation efforts are complete. This is known as a permanent medical impairment. The amount each individual receives is calculated soley based on the percentage of impairment they experience as a result of the injury and what they were earning at the time the injury happened.

    The proposed new system would bring the Northwest Territories and Nunavut in line with compensation systems in the rest of Canada and replace lifetime pensions with a one-time lump sum payment for non-financial losses plus an ongoing benefit payment for lost earnings.

    “What WSCC is proposing is to move to a fairer system that has the ability to consider not just the lasting effects of a person’s injury and what they were earning when it happened but other important factors such as their occupation and the impact the injury has had on their current and future earning levels”, said Debbie Molloy, WSCC President & CEO. “The amount a person receives can also be reassessed if the impairment gets worse over time.”

    This is the second public enagagement on this proposal. The findings from the first engagement in 2020 showed 64% of respondents being in favor of a new pension system. Additionally, 92% of respondents said that they believed injured workers should be compensated for lost current and future earnings due to a permanent impairment, not just a percentage of what they were earning at the time the injury happened.

    The WSCC is now providing draft policy documents to give more detail about how the system would operate if it goes ahead as proposed and has reopened the engagement period to all members of the public from Monday, November 8 until December 8, 2021.

    Visit the WSCC’s website wscc.nt.ca or wscc.nu.ca to read more about how the pension system works, all the proposed changes, and to share your feedback by completing an online survey or participating in an online public forum.

    Maggie Collins
    Communications Manager
    Workers’ Safety and Compensation Commission Northwest Territories and Nunavut
    T: (867) 920-3854

    Media Release – WSCC Public Engagement on Workers’ Compensation Pension System – EN – FR.pdf

    Source: WSCC

    Continue reading →
  • New Chair Announced for WCB Nova Scotia November 10, 2021

    The Province has appointed Saeed El-Darahali as the new Chair of WCB Nova Scotia.

    Mr. El-Darahali is President and CEO of SimplyCast, a Dartmouth-based technology company. He has more than 15 years of leadership experience and was named one of Atlantic Canada’s top 50 CEOs in 2020 by Atlantic Business Magazine. Mr. El-Darahali is currently Chair of the board of the Immigrant Services Association of Nova Scotia and a director of EduNova Cooperative Ltd.

    Mr. El-Darahali will take over from Robert Patzelt who has been acting in the position since the departure of Rodney Burgar. Mr. Patzelt will remain on the Board as Deputy Chair.

    The appointment is for a five-year term with a possibility of re-appointment.

    Source: WCB Nova Scotia

    Continue reading →
  • WorkplaceNL holds discounted average assessment rate at $1.69 for fourth consecutive year November 2, 2021

    Effective January 1, 2022, WorkplaceNL will hold the average assessment rate paid by employers at $1.69 per $100 of payroll, including a temporary $0.21 average discount.

    Seventy-three percent of employers will have no change or a lower annual assessment rate and 27 per cent of employers will have a higher rate in 2022. This compares to 43 per cent having no change or a lower rate and 57 per cent having a higher rate in 2021.

    Continue reading →
  • WCB Saskatchewan announces 2022 preliminary average premium rate October 13, 2021 Continue reading →
  • WCB Nova Scotia shifts to long-term remote workforce model (Oct. 7/21) October 7, 2021

    After more than a year and a half of working in a mix of at-home and on-site scenarios, WCB Nova Scotia will be moving to a hybrid working model for the longer term. When the pandemic forced closure of all public buildings in early 2020, WCB Nova Scotia employees, enabled by technology, quickly and seamlessly moved to deliver service remotely.

    Continue reading →
  • WSIB reduces average premium rate by 5.1% in 2022 October 6, 2021

    The Workplace Safety and Insurance Board (WSIB) announced today during its Annual General Meeting (AGM), that the average premium rate for Ontario businesses will be reduced by 5.1% for 2022, from $1.37 to $1.30. The announcement comes after the WSIB held 2021 premium rates at the same level as the previous year, in an effort to support businesses through the COVID-19 pandemic.

    Continue reading →