REGULATORY NEWS FOR WEEK OF NOVEMBER 25, 2019
On November 13th, 2019, Health Canada released its Fifth Report on Human Biomonitoring of Environmental Chemicals in Canada. This technical report provides biomonitoring results from the fifth cycle (2016-2017) of the Canadian Health Measures Survey (CHMS). It presents a comprehensive set of data on environmental chemical exposure in the Canadian population. If you wish to contact the Food Directorate electronically, please use the words “parabens (NOP-0033)” in the subject line of your e-mail. Health Canada is able to consider information received by January 28, 2020, 75 days from the date of this posting.
Health Canada’s Food Directorate is proposing modifications to the parabens’ food uses with the objective of ensuring that these uses are up to date and reflective of actual uses in foods sold in Canada. Consequently, Health Canada intends to revise the food categories and maximum levels of use for methyl-p-hydroxybenzoate (methyl paraben), propyl-p-hydroxybenzoate (propyl paraben), and their sodium salts (sodium salt of methyl-p-hydroxybenzoic acid and sodium salt of propyl-p-hydroxybenzoic acid) in Part 2 of the List of Permitted Preservatives.
As part of ongoing efforts to improve client service, please be advised that the Canadian Food Inspection Agency (CFIA) has posted a new Food Import Notice on our website to clarify the information required in box 2 of the Official Meat Inspection Certificate (OMIC) forms for meat products from the United States.
Health Canada’s Food Directorate completed a premarket safety assessment of a food additive submission seeking approval for the use Xylanase from Trichoderma reesei (LOVxlnA#568.4) in Bread, Flour, Whole Wheat Flour and Unstandardized Bakery Products. As no safety concerns were raised through Health Canada’s assessment, the Department has enabled the use of Xylanase from Trichoderma reesei (LOVxlnA#568.4) described in the information document below by modifying the List of Permitted Food Enzymes, effective November 21, 2019.
Every year, Safer Chemicals Healthy Families’ Mind the Store campaign evaluates and grades chemical policies and practices of North American retail chains in a report card. Today, the new report card was published and it shows overall improvements in how companies are embracing chemical safety policies to help protect consumers from toxic chemicals in products.
A toolkit is available to help workplaces prevent musculoskeletal disorders (MSDs) and control exposure to respiratory hazards. The toolkit contains links to resources, information and communications materials. It was developed for the Healthy Workers in Healthy Workplaces blitz that runs until December 27, 2019. Download the toolkit from your health and safety association.
Albertans are invited to share their thoughts on whether the province should continue to observe daylight saving time.
To implement parts of Budget 2019, three bills have been introduced:
· Bill 20: the Fiscal Measures and Taxation Act, 2019
· Bill 21: the Ensuring Fiscal Sustainability Act, 2019
· Bill 22: the Reform of Agencies, Boards and Commissions and Government Enterprises Act, 2019
Ontario will reward its safest employers with an estimated $140 million for excellence in occupational health and safety as part of a first-of-its-kind in Canada program. The program, Supporting Ontario’s Safe Employers, will formally recognize employers who successfully implement health and safety programs in their workplaces. The financial rewards will come in the form of Workplace Safety and Insurance Board (WSIB) rebates over a three-year period.
NS Reg. 179/2019 amends the regulations to adopt the National Building Cod of Canada, 2015 and the National Energy Code of Canada for Buildings, 2017 to be known as the “Nova Scotia Building Code”.
Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) is issuing significant new use rules (SNURs) under the
Toxic Substances Control Act (TSCA) for 22 chemical substances which are the subject of premanufacture notices (PMNs). The chemical substances are subject to Orders issued by EPA under TSCA. This action requires persons who intend to manufacture (defined by statute to include import) or process any of these chemical substances for an activity that is designated as a significant new use by this rule to notify EPA at least 90 days before commencing that activity. Persons may not commence manufacture or processing for the significant new use until EPA has conducted a review of the notice, made an appropriate determination on the notice, and has taken such actions as are required by that determination. This rule is effective on January 24, 2020.
The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA) regulations to prohibit the manufacture (including import), processing, and distribution of methylene chloride in all paint removers for consumer use will go into effect after November 22, 2019. Starting tomorrow, it will be unlawful for any person or retailer to sell or distribute paint removal products containing methylene chloride for consumer use, including e-commerce sales.
OSHA requests information, comments, and documents that would assist the agency in determining whether to adopt a new online delivery model for OSHA’s Outreach Training Program. Submit information, comments, and documents on or before December 9, 2019.
The Toxic Substances Control Act (TSCA) requires EPA to publish a list of new chemical submissions received by the Agency under TSCA Section 5. The list of submissions received includes premanufacture notices (PMNs), Significant New Use Notices (SNUNs), Microbial Commercial Activity Notices (MCANs), Test Market Exemption Applications (TMEAs), Notices of Commencement of Manufacture or Import (NOCs), and test information submitted under section 5.
One of the actions of the second review of REACH was to improve the workability and quality of extended safety data sheets (eSDSs). This action is divided into two parts: the first focuses on harmonised formats and IT tools for eSDSs to be further developed by industry, making them more fit-for-purpose for end users, the second is on introducing minimum requirements for exposure scenarios (ESs) and related methods for mixtures.
With the increase in merchandise sales during the holiday shopping season comes an increase in potential hazards for workers in the wholesale, transportation, and retail industries. Employers should take appropriate actions to protect workers fulfilling customer orders, delivering packages, and managing crowds of shoppers. OSHA has resources to help keep workers safe at every step along the way in getting gifts from the warehouse to your home.
In addition to cold stress, there are other winter weather related hazards that workers may be exposed to when performing tasks such as driving in the snow, removing snow from rooftops, and working near downed or damaged power lines. Although employers cannot control roadway conditions, they can promote safe driving behavior by ensuring workers: recognize the hazards of winter weather driving, for example, driving on snow/ice covered roads; are properly trained for driving in winter weather conditions; and are licensed (as applicable) for the vehicles they operate. Employers should set and enforce driver safety policies. Employers should also implement an effective maintenance program for all vehicles and mechanized equipment that workers are required to operate.
To actively engage workers in identifying and reporting chemical hazards and taking precautions, Sara offers these suggestions:
1. Ensure all employees have received WHMIS training.
2. Take WHMIS training onto the shop floor. Make sure workers understand what they’ve learned and how to apply it in their own workplace. If people don’t understand how the chemicals they’re using could affect them – is it a skin irritant? A cancer-causing agent? – they’re not going to be vigilant about protecting themselves.
3. Have senior management talk to workers about the chemicals being used and the controls that are in place. If people see health and safety as a company priority, then it becomes their priority.
4. Encourage the joint health and safety committee to include questions about chemical safety practices in their inspections. The idea should be not about testing workers, but to identify possible gaps in training and comprehension.
5. Reinforce WHMIS training by conducting safety talks on chemicals in use, the controls in place, how to recognize when they’re not working, and emergency response procedures.
6. Encourage workers to bring questions and possible hazards forward to their supervisors, and make sure managers and supervisors respond to questions on reported hazards effectively and in a timely manner. The worker could be reporting on something as simple as a container that is damaged or improperly labelled.
7. Share the results of hazard reports with workers. Include findings, solutions and next steps, so that workers see an effective reporting system in place and know they are being heard.