Blog Post #1465 – Inspections Curb Injuries

Excerpt from the OH&S Canada magazine (Oct. 2016)

A recent paper by the Institute for Work & Health (IWH) in Toronto concludes that the government inspections with potential orders and penalties are effective in motivating employers to improve health and safety standards.

Published on June 07, 2016, on the American Journal of Industrial Medicine’s website, the paper is the result of examining 43 previous studies on OH&S regulation published between 1990 and 2013. “One of the key takeaways from the paper is that when a labour inspector imposes an order on a workplace, the result is that the workplace is safer afterwards,” IWH president Dr. Cam Mustard says.

The research team, led by IWH senior scientist Dr. Emile Tompa, found that awareness campaigns help to reduce workplace accidents. His study also classified an order as a type of penalty and concluded that orders alone are effective in making workplaces safer. “These findings reinforce the importance of regulators being out in the field and identifying, citing and penalizing noncompliant organizations,” Dr. Tompa says.

Ontario has roughly 250 labour inspectors inspecting 250,000 workplaces. A typical year includes about 80,000 field visits, resulting in about 140,000 orders. “It is not that the enforcement of regulation works and nothing else works; it is that enforcement is just one of the arrows in the quiver,” says Dr. Mustard, who notes that the research is motivated by a long-running debate about whether it is appropriate for governments to regulate workplace safety.

“There will be stakeholders in every labour market who argue that all of this work by labour inspectors doesn’t make a difference, so you should stop doing it,” he says. “And then there will be stakeholders who say there is nothing more important than having a labour inspector, like a policeman, come around and check around and make sure things are good. So, it is important to have an answer to this question.”

My opinion

I would wager the reader guess which side HRS Group Inc. is on this matter.

The Ministry of Labour, Immigration, Training and Skills Development is a necessary entity that ensures safety compliance to every worksite in Ontario other than those governed by federal regulations. (Telecommunication companies such as Bell, Rogers etc. are such companies)


Without the MLITSD, I believe, there would be more accidents leading to possible critical injuries or even death.

I have been a big fan of the ministry and have written about them for almost 13 years. The worker, today, is better educated and has knowledge of his/her rights under the Ontario Occupational Health and Safety Act (OHSA) as well as many health and safety regulations.

HRS Group Inc. has a great team that can help you with all your health and safety needs. Contact Deborah toll free at 1-877-907-7744 or locally at 705-749-1259.

We can also be reached at 

Ensure your workplace is a safe place.

Remember – In Ontario, “ALL Accidents are Preventable”

‘Work’ and ‘Play’ safe.

Daniel L. Beal

CHSEP – Advanced Level
CEO & Senior Trainer
HRS Group Inc.





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