You’re only human.
Questions to ask to avoid getting hurt at work
Whether you just started your first job, a summer job, or an internship, there are tons of questions you might, and should have, about workplace safety. So, we’re here to answer some of the more important and popular ones below in the "Frequently asked questions" section.
Frequently asked questions
Talk to your boss, supervisor or Health and Safety Representative about going over your workplace safety protocols. You have the right to know about workplace hazards and what to do about them, and you must follow your workplace’s health and safety policies and procedures.
Absolutely! If you feel uncomfortable or need more training to do the work you’re asked to do, you have the right to refuse to do it. Bring the unsafe situation to the attention of your supervisor and your employee safety representative. Remember, your boss can’t take action against you or treat you unfairly for raising safety concerns.
You have the right to participate in training and information sessions to help you do your job safely. As a legal requirement, you should have received health and safety awareness training before starting your job. If you weren’t given any training, ask for it. You have the right to refuse unsafe work and your boss or company can’t take action against you or treat you unfairly for raising safety concerns.
Your job might require the use of personal protection equipment (PPE). If it does, you should absolutely wear the equipment provided for you. PPE is the last line of defense in preventing workplace injuries and illnesses. If your PPE is uncomfortable, too heavy, or restricts your movement, bring these issues to the attention to your supervisor.
Always let your supervisor know your concerns. You have the right to help identify and resolve workplace and safety concerns.
You can also notify the Ministry of Labour about workplace fatalities, critical injuries, work refusals, unfair punishments and unsafe work practices by calling 1-877-202-0008.
If it’s an emergency, always call 9-1-1 immediately.
The WSIB is an independent agency of the Ontario Government that administers compensation and no-fault insurance for Ontario workplaces. Basically, your company pays fees to the WSIB to ensure that if you get hurt at work, you can still be paid for the time you take to recover and that the health care you receive remains free for you.
WHMIS is the Canadian standard for how workplaces gain information about hazardous materials. It requires companies to disclose the health and safety information about the hazardous materials by ensuring the materials are labelled, employees are educated, and that supplementary information is provided.
Check employer safety records!
Visit the WSIB website to check on the safety of Ontario businesses. You can find out how safe your job is by looking at the number of injuries a business has in a year, the leading types of injures for that workplace and much more.
Check your employer's health and safety statistics now.
Do you know what to do if you get hurt at work?
Don’t panic. Don’t Instagram. Do the following:
Get medical help
Your workplace is responsible for providing first aid. Go to the doctor or hospital if you need treatment – your boss is also required to pay for your transportation.
Tell your boss
Tell your boss or supervisor about your injury or illness. They will investigate and keep a record of what happened.
Report to the WSIB
Your boss or company must tell us within three days if an injury or illness happens. You can report it by submitting the Worker’s Report of Injury/Illness (form 6).
We work with you and your company to help you recover and return to work safely and at the right time.
Parents! Talk to your kids about workplace safety
We get it. Talking to your kid can be hard because, well… they’re a kid. But workplace safety is something worth talking about. So, we’ve put together list of questions you can ask to get the conversation started, get your kid thinking about workplace safety, and help them stay safe at work.
Questions to ask your kid:
- Tell me about the equipment you work with or on?
- Is there anything dangerous that can hurt you?
- Is all the proper guarding on equipment?
- Have you heard any stories about people getting injured or harassed?
- Do people treat each other well?
- Do your boss and company take safety seriously?
- Do they make sure all the equipment is in good repair?
- Do things get fixed when they’re broken?
- Have you ever been asked to do anything you thought was unsafe?
- Has anyone ever made you feel uncomfortable in any way?
- Every employee has three basic rights given to them by The Occupational Health and Safety Act. The right to know the hazards in your job. The right to participate in keeping your workplace healthy and safe. The right to refuse unsafe work if you believe your job is likely to endanger you.
- Do you know the 3 basic rights?
- What would you do if you were asked to do something you thought was unsafe?
- Is there someone to talk to if you feel a job isn’t safe?
- Are you concerned you might get fired if you don’t do jobs you think could be dangerous?
- Do you know you can’t get fired if you refuse to do a task because you’re afraid you might get hurt?
- Do you know you’re allowed to refuse unsafe work, and your boss can’t get you in trouble for it?