On October 1, 2012, Ontario’s Ministry of Labour will begin enforcing a new workplace posting obligation under the Occupational Health and Safety Act (OHSA) which requires all employers in Ontario to post a copy of its “Health & Safety at Work – Prevention Starts Here” poster.

Designed to make workers more aware of occupational health and safety rights and obligations under the OHSA, the poster must be printed on legal-sized paper (8.5” x 14”) and prominently displayed at the workplace. It is available online or through ServiceOntario Publications upon payment of shipping and handling charges. The poster summarizes workers’ health and safety rights and responsibilities, and the responsibilities of employers and supervisors. It also reminds workers that employers are prohibited from taking reprisals against them for following the OHSA, raising workplace health and safety concerns, or seeking enforcement of the OHSA. The poster encourages workers to participate in health and safety and explains how to contact the Ministry of Labour.

The poster is the newest addition to the pre-existing posting obligations for employers in Ontario, which are summarized below.

Other Ontario Posting Requirements

Occupational Health and Safety Act

  • The OHSA. All Ontario employers are required to post a copy of the entire OHSA in their workplaces. The OHSA is available for downloading online. Hard copies may be ordered from ServiceOntario Publications for C$8, plus HST.
  • Policies. Ontario employers with more than five workers at the workplace must develop and post the following policies in a conspicuous location at the workplace: (i) occupational health and safety policy; (ii) workplace harassment policy; and (iii) workplace violence policy.
  • Joint Health & Safety Committee Information. Ontario employers with workplaces at which at least 20 workers are regularly employed must establish a joint health and safety committee and post the names and locations of the committee members in a conspicuous location or where they are most likely to come to the attention of the workers.

Employment Standards Act, 2000

  • “What You Should Know About The Ontario Employment Standards Act” Poster. All Ontario employers are required to post a legal-sized copy of this poster, which outlines employees’ rights and employers’ responsibilities at work. The poster is available online from the Ministry of Labour, or may be ordered through ServiceOntario Publications upon payment of shipping and handling charges.

Workplace Safety and Insurance Act, 1997

  • “In Case of Injury at Work” Poster. All Ontario employers are required to prominently display a legal-sized copy of this poster in their workplace. Employers can obtain the poster online or by contacting Ontario’s Workplace Safety and Insurance Board at 416-344-3862 or 1-800-465-5606.

Smoke-Free Ontario Act

  • No Smoking Signs. All Ontario employers must post “No Smoking” signs at all entrances and exits of enclosed workplaces to ensure that employees and the public know that smoking is prohibited. The sign must (i) measure 10 cm by 10 cm; (ii) have a white background and the international no smoking symbol; and (iii) bear the Trillium and Smoke-Free Ontario logos. A copy of the sign meeting these requirements is available online from the Ministry of Health Promotion.