While health and safety in the workplace has gained importance over the years, most employers aren’t sufficiently aware of how the penal provisions of the Québec Health and Safety Act may impact their operations. On an ongoing basis, providing best practices, sufficiently detailed work rules, training programs and enforcement will allow them to defend against and avoid substantial fines. The costs of ignoring these issues, which are already quite substantial, is about to get far more costly as of July 1, 2010, because fines payable for violation of Sections 236 and 237 of the Québec Health and Safety Act are about to double, going up once again as of January 1, 2011. Fines of $10,000 minimum for each infraction as is the case with a violation of Section 237, can be extremely costly. Because these provisions are considered as “strict liability”, employers’ defenses are generally limited to a “due diligence defense” of absolute best practice in providing a completely safe and secure environment in which rules and regulations that are appropriate are strictly enforced. Because these fines will have a particularly dissuasive bite to them and because the Commission de la santé et de la sécurité du travail has become ever more aggressive in their enforcement of these provisions, RSS professionals are available to help employers in all aspects of health and safety law.