The Saskatchewan Association for Safe Workplaces in Health (SASWH) is the latest of seven provincial safety associations to sign a new funding agreement with the Saskatchewan Workers’ Compensation Board (WCB). This agreement works to strengthen the WCB’s partnership and close working relationship with each safety association as we all work together to create safer workplaces in Saskatchewan.
“The WCB has long-standing close ties with our safety associations, including SASWH, to help work toward creating safer workplaces in our province through awareness, training and other injury prevention initiatives,” says Kevin Mooney, vice-president of prevention and employer services. “Our partnerships with safety associations are key to our workplace safety efforts across the province. These close partnerships help us support the safety and prevention interests of all employers in those industries.”
The WCB currently funds seven industry-based safety associations. Each safety association is governed by a board of directors representing employers and workers from the rate codes that fund the association. All safety associations follow a strategic planning process and report on their results against their plans to industry and the WCB. Safety associations are funded through an extra levy on the premium rates of employers within specific rate codes.
“The new funding agreement brought forward by the WCB included a thorough consultation process that worked to bring clarity to the respective roles of the WCB and SASWH,” says Sandra Cripps, CEO of SASWH. “Our role is to ensure that as the health-care safety association, we remain within our core business, which is to provide quality safety education and programs that hold a focus on prevention of injuries to our membership. The approach outlined in the new funding agreement fundamentally aligned with the current processes already in place by SASWH.”
Total injury rates for industries with safety associations have decreased from 5.46 per cent in 2016 to 4.74 per cent in 2020.
The Total injury rate in the health-care industry, which includes the health authority, hospitals and care homes, has decreased from 2016 to 2020. The Total injury rate for this rate code was 7.17 per 100 workers in 2020, compared to a Total injury rate of 7.96 per 100 workers in 2016. This represents a decrease of 9.92 per cent.
“SASWH is pleased to have had the opportunity to work through the new funding agreement with the Saskatchewan WCB to sign a three-year agreement that will support our ability to ensure that workplace health and safety is a priority for all,” says Cripps.
The WCB’s new safety association funding agreement acknowledges that strong and effective governance leads to sustainable improvement and increases accountability at all levels. The new funding agreement will work to further support each safety association’s purpose and mandate. Through sharing of information, the WCB will continue to support the performance of all safety associations.
“We are delighted to continue to work with SASWH and all safety associations in the province of Saskatchewan,” says Mooney. “Safety associations are essential partners with us as we work together to help workers and employers prevent workplace injuries. We look forward to fortifying our relationships with all of our safety associations.”