REGULATORY NEWS FOR WEEK OF AUGUST 14, 2019
Due to the significant interest in the first webinar on Zero Plastic Waste, Environment and Climate Change Canada is offering two additional one-hour webinars in English on August 21, 2019, to update partners and other interested parties on federal activities and next steps, and to answer any key questions. The webinars will provide an overview of the Government of Canada’s commitments and actions as well as the ongoing work with provinces and territories through the Canadian Council of Ministers of the Environment.
Article by Rima Ramchandani and David Seville – Torys LLP
Canada’s securities regulators have published guidance for public companies on preparing disclosure about material climate change-related risks. Staff Notice 51-358 highlights global developments in this area and states that climate change-related risks and their potential financial impacts are now mainstream business issues. The regulators describe the staff notice as an educational tool (expanding on the 2010 staff notice “Environmental Reporting Guidance”) that is meant to assist public companies in identifying and disclosing material climate change-related risks for the benefit of investors and other stakeholders.
You are invited to participate in a free webinar on the 2019 to 2022 Federal Sustainable Development Strategy and action to develop a whole-of-Canada National Strategy for the 2030 Agenda. Curious about how we are implementing the global Sustainable Development Goals and what the next steps are? This webinar is for you.
Health Canada’s Food Directorate completed a premarket safety assessment of a food additive submission seeking approval for the use of tocopherols in dehydrated fish broth and dehydrated mollusc broth. As no safety concerns were raised through Health Canada’s assessment, the Department has enabled the use of tocopherols described in the information document by updating the List of Permitted Preservatives, effective August 8, 2019.
- Notice of Modification to the List of Permitted Sequestering Agents to Enable the Use of Potassium Phosphate, dibasic
Health Canada’s Food Directorate completed a detailed safety assessment of a food additive submission seeking approval for the use of potassium phosphate, dibasic in the manufacture of infant cereal products and sodium potassium hexametaphosphate in liquid whey destined for the manufacture of concentrated or dried whey products to be used in infant formula. As no safety concerns were raised through Health Canada’s assessment, the Department has enabled the use of these food additives as described in the information document by modifying the Lists of Permitted Food Additives, effective August 7, 2019.
The Ministers assessed information on nine new substances (chemicals and polymers) and determined that they meet the criteria for addition to the Domestic Substances List, under subsections 87(1) and 87(5) of CEPA. These nine substances are therefore being added to the Domestic Substances List and, as a result, are no longer subject to the New Substances Notification Regulations (Chemicals and Polymers).
Employers often ask if it is possible to limit potential liability to a long-service employee by entering into a “fresh” employment contract that resets the period of service to zero. A recent decision from the Court of Appeal for Ontario – Ariss v Norr Canada – confirms that while an employer can successfully limit an employee’s entitlement to common law reasonable notice, parties cannot contract out of the minimum statutory entitlements under the Employment Standards Act, 2000 (“ESA”), even if they voluntarily agree to do so.
As many of you know, an employee whose employment is terminated without cause is entitled to statutory notice under applicable employment standards legislation and also to reasonable notice under the common law (in the absence of contract limiting common law notice). From time to time, parties may disagree about the amount of notice owing, but rarely about the quality of the notice period.
In a recent decision – Wood v CTS of Canada Co. – the Court of Appeal for Ontario held that working notice has both a quantitative and a qualitative component. The quantitative component is the length of the notice. The qualitative component is whether an employee has a meaningful opportunity to find new employment during the period of working notice. For example, if an employee works excessive overtime during a notice period, making it nearly impossible to look for other work, the court has said this notice is qualitatively insufficient.
- Reminder – Ontario has amended various regulations regarding propane, industrial establishments and exposure to chemicals
As previously reported in the weekly RDC newsletter, the Ontario government announced a series of changes under the Occupational Health and Safety Act, with the aim of reducing regulatory burden and increasing flexibility for businesses. Some of the changes came into effect on July 1, 2019.
Amendments of note include:
- O.Reg. 215/01 – simplifies training requirements for drivers refuelling propane vehicles
- Regulation 851 – updates safety equipment requirements for industrial establishments
- Regulation 833 – regarding the control of exposure to biological or chemical agents under the OHSA
- Regulation 490/09 – referring to designated substances under the OHSA
Inspections will take place at industrial workplaces until March 31, 2020. Read about the focus of health and safety inspections and initiatives, and get resources to help workplaces comply with the law. Areas if focus are:
- Healthy workplaces : Respiratory exposure (fume, vapours, duts, etc.)
- Musculoskeletal injuries
- Slips, trips and falls
- Machine guarding
From October 1 – December 27, MOL inspectors will be visiting Ontario workplaces in the construction, health care, industrial and mining sectors, looking for OHSA infractions related to musculoskeletal disorders and respiratory hazards specific to silica, welding fumes and diesel exhaust. To get employers ready, WSPS will be providing a free awareness webinar on September 12.
The U.S. Department of Labor’s Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) has cited Transdev Services Inc. for exposing employees at a Norcross, Georgia, worksite to safety and health hazards. The company faces $188,714 in penalties. OSHA cited Transdev Services for obstructing access to emergency eyewash and shower stations designed to minimize the effects of employee exposure to corrosive chemicals. OSHA also cited the company for failing to ensure to label hazardous chemicals; provide training on hazardous chemicals and incipient stage firefighting and fire extinguisher use; and train and evaluate forklift operators properly. OSHA has previously cited the company for similar violations.
CDI is very pleased to announce that our latest publication Packaged Chemicals By Sea Risk Mitigation is now available. The commercial success of all companies is built on reputation. With the lightning speed and ferocity of modern media, a good public image in the international market place remains intact until the moment of an incident. Association, even suggested involvement with an accident or incident can destroy reputation, collapse share price and ultimately result in the demise of the company. This book provides insight into the entire, marine logistic distribution supply chain and the responsibilities of chemical manufacturers and their service providers
ECHA has published guidance for preparing a scientific report for health-based exposure limits and occupational exposure limits (OELs) in the workplace. It aligns the methodologies in REACH and occupational health and safety legislation, to establish safe levels of exposure to chemicals in the workplace. The document takes the findings of the ECHA/RAC – SCOEL joint task force into account.
The BRS Secretariat is now seeking partners to mobilise business, government, international organisation, academic and civil society interests and expertise on the environmentally sound management – including prevention and minimisation – of plastic waste. The deadline for expressing interest is 31 August 2019.
When most people think about impairment, the use and effects of alcohol, cannabis, or other drugs likely comes to mind. While these may be the most obvious sources, impairment can be caused by any substance or event that results in a lack of concentration, the inability to do a task, or the inability to make decisions. Examples can include bullying, life stresses, unresolved conflicts, and fatigue.
On May 15, 2019, CVSA’s law enforcement members conducted 10,358 commercial motor vehicle inspections focused on identifying brake system violations. Of those inspections, 16.1% of vehicles had brake-related critical vehicle inspection items. Those 1,667 vehicles were placed out of service until the violations could be corrected.