Blog Post #1512 – New Data-Sharing Agreement Created

Excerpt from the OH&S Canada magazine ((January 2017)

The Ontario Ministry of Labour has worked out an information-sharing agreement with the federal government to protect the rights of the province’s temporary foreign workers (TFW). The agreement, announce by the Ministry on December 16, 2016, will facilitate the exchange of data about employers and recruiting agents between the federal and provincial governments.

The information exchange is expected to improve the province’s oversight of workplaces that hire TFWs and help the provincial government better determine whether employers comply with OH&S law and identify non-compliant employers and report them. “We are concerned about the potential exploitation of temporary foreign workers, and this new information-sharing agreement will help us better protect some of our most vulnerable workers,” Ontario Labour Minister Kevin Flynn says.

The new agreement is the latest step in the Ministry’s ongoing plan to make sure the TFWs have the same protections that other provincial workers have. The Ministry conducted an inspection blitz on workplaces using TFWs from May 02, 2016 to June 30, 2016, focusing om the employers’ adherence to employment standards. The province has also amended the Employment Protection for Foreign Nationals Act, 2009, to extend protection to foreign nationals seeking work from a temporary-employment program as well as to TFWs.

My opinion

This type of cooperation was a long time coming. Many TFWs have been, in the past, afraid to complain about health and safety issues because there were repercussions such a s reduced hours and even a plane ticket back to wherever they came from. I had a witnessed such a thing when I was completing Elevating Work Platform (EWP) training. One Spanish person handled the equipment incorrectly and was removed from the project and sent back. Picture the other TFWs and how they would not have spoken out to complain. They could see that the same thing could have happened to them as well.

“Well done” to both the federal and provincial governments for their insight to the problems facing TFWs.

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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