These projects will be funded through two Ministry of Labour initiatives:
- The Occupational Health and Safety Prevention and Innovation Program (OHSPIP), which supports workplace-focused innovation projects and collaborative partnerships that lead to improvements in occupational health and safety in Ontario.
- The Research Opportunities Program (ROP), which invests in research and educational projects that focus on occupational health and safety system priorities.
Investing in innovative approaches to health and safety will ensure that the realities of today’s changing workforce are addressed and focus resources where they are truly necessary to save lives and prevent injury, the government statement said.
Kevin Flynn, Minister of Labour, said: “Investing in programs like the Research Opportunities Program and the Occupational Health and Safety Prevention and Innovation Program will help Ontario continue to be one of the safest places to work in the world. These projects will improve our knowledge so we can share best practices and continue to reduce injuries and save lives in Ontario’s workplaces.”
George Gritziotis, Chief Prevention Officer, said in a release that: “Supporting new and innovative approaches in communities throughout Ontario helps us expand our health and safety footprint and move forward with our goal of ensuring every worker goes home safe at the end of their shift.”
- The 2016-17 funding for OHSPIP is approximately $1.9 million.
- The 2016-17 funding for ROP is approximately $2.48 million.
- Funding applications went through a five-step review process, including evaluation by an external body of researchers.
- Since 2003, Ontario’s annual rate of workplace injuries has dropped by more than 40 per cent, making the province’s workplaces among the safest in the world.
Funding will support initiatives that aim to improve safety for workers engaged in high hazard activities, protect vulnerable workers, help small businesses advance their health and safety practices, protect young workers, understand and support workplace mental health and put occupational health and safety research into practice.
The successful projects strongly align with the province’s ongoing prevention priorities and build on work being completed through the Construction Health and Safety Action Plan and Ontario’s Integrated Occupational Health and Safety Strategy.