Safety Roles & Responsibilities

Roles & Responsibilities for Workplace Safety

Board of Governors

  • Review Risk Management Services annual report on occupational safety

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Senior Executive

  • Review serious accidents and semi-annual progress reports on occupational safety

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Executive Safety Management Team

  • Faculty/Departmental oversight of JOHSC and approval of recommended university-wide safety initiatives

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VP Leadership and/or Team

  • Support the development of JOHSCs utilizing the tool kit developed by RMS
  • Provide invitation letters to employer and worker representatives to serve on the portfolio JOHSC
  • Review audit tool summary reports
  • Receive monthly JOHSC Minutes

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Unit Safety Management and/or Team

  • Support the development of JOHSCs utilizing the tool kit developed by RMS
  • Appoint employer representative to JOHSC
  • Assign administrative support to the JOHSC
  • Review minutes of JOHSC and monitor audit tool summary reports
  • Respond to JOHSC recommendations and communications

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Joint Occupational Health & Safety Committee (JOHSC)

JOHSCs are governed under the Workers Compensation Act. They are an advisory group consisting of employer and worker representatives working together to improve occupational health and safety in their workplace. The duties of the committee members are to:

  • Attend all monthly Committee meetings. When unable to attend, inform the Recording Secretary, and in the case of worker representatives send a designated alternate. Attendance shall be reviewed by the appointing entities at the request of the Co-chairs
  • Participate in all activities of the Committee, and chair Sub-Committees when requested
  • Participate in inspections and investigations by reviewing all reports to the Committee, by the Local Safety Teams (LSTs)
  • Recommend and participate in the development of policies and procedures for improvement of health and safety
  • Attend safety courses or seminars, which are made available to Committee members. Each Committee member is entitled to 8 hours of annual educational leave.
  • Promote the University Safety Policy, and safety procedures of the University, in carrying out their work
  • Be familiar with WorkSafeBC Occupational Health and Safety Regulations, the University Safety Policy, and the Committee’s Terms of Reference

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JOHSC Co-Chairs

In addition to the duties of a JOHSC member, the elected worker and employer co-chairs are responsible to:

  • Review and approve distribution of previous minutes and materials prior to each meeting, and prepare an agenda
  • Ensure that the previous minutes and proposed agenda, and pertinent information are distributed prior to the meeting
  • Chair all meetings; take a leadership role in guiding Committee discussions towards definite conclusions
  • Report to the Committee on the status of suggestions and recommendations from previous meetings
  • Appoint sub-committee members, and encourage active participation
  • Ensure meeting time & location is arranged by the Recording Secretary
  • Ensure that the minutes are recorded at each meeting
  • Write reports and correspondence
  • Ensure that each member is given a copy of relevant resource information, including the WorkSafeBC Occupational Health and Safety Regulation, and the Committee’s Terms of Reference
  • When directed by the Committee, the Co-chairs will send written recommendations to the Administrative Head or Safety Management Group for presentation to the university executive with a request for response as per WorkSafeBC legislation. (A written response is required within 21 days of receiving the request.)

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JOHSC Administrative Support

  • Set meeting agenda after consultation with co-chairs
  • Act as the Recording Secretary for and record detailed minutes during the committee meetings
  • Draft meeting minutes using standard RMS developed template and send to committee for review (within one week of the last meeting)
  • Ensure minutes are available to the employer, committee members and others as required
  • Ensure approved minutes are posted, either electronically or on units dedicated safety board, for all workers to read
  • Review LSt minutes and workplace inspections and summarize information for JOHSC meeting (this can range from 1 to over 30 LSTs in some areas)

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Local Safety Teams (LSTs)

LSTs are not required or governed under the Workers Compensation Act. However, they play a key role in providing assistance on:

  • Safety items and issues within their mandate and providing information, recommendations and support to the JOHSC
  • Worksite inspections
  • Accident/incident investigations, and
  • Communication of occupational safety related information

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RMS Support

  • Develop toolkits to support the responsible executives and their delegates in the development of JOHSCs in their areas
  • Assign RMS resources to support each responsible executive and their delegates in the implementation of steps for the development of the JOHSC
  • Develop and deliver training for JOHSC and LST members
  • Attend JOHSC meetings and support new committee structure
  • Be an ongoing resource to all JOHSCs
  • Audit JOHSC process and support summarized information for Unit Safety Management, VP Leadership and Board of Governors levels.

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