Workplace and Environmental Health and Safety Policy

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McMaster University is committed to provide and maintain healthy and safe working and learning environments for all employees, students, volunteers and visitors. This is achieved by observing best practices which meet or exceed the standards to comply with legislative requirements as contained in the Ontario Occupational Health and Safety Act, Environmental Protection Act, Nuclear Safety and Control Act and other statutes, their regulations, and the policy and procedures established by the University. To support this commitment both McMaster University and its employees are responsible jointly to implement and maintain an Internal Responsibility System directed at promoting health and safety, preventing incidents involving occupational injuries and illnesses or adverse effects upon the natural environment.

The University is responsible for the provision of information, training, equipment and resources to support the Internal Responsibility System and ensure compliance with all relevant statutes, this policy and internal health and safety programs. Managers and Supervisors are accountable for the safety of workers within their area, for compliance with the statutory and University requirements, and are required to support Joint Health and Safety Committees. Employees are required to work in compliance with statutory and University requirements, and to report unsafe conditions to their supervisors.

Contractors and subcontractors undertaking to perform work for McMaster University must, as part of their contract, comply with all relevant workplace and environmental health and safety statutes and to meet or exceed the University’s Workplace and Environmental Health and Safety Program requirements.

In addition to the above stated managerial responsibilities, Deans, Directors, Chairs, Research Supervisors and other Managers are also accountable for the safety of students, volunteers and visitors who work and/or study within their area of jurisdiction. Students are required by University policy to comply with all University health, safety, and environmental programs.

Implementation:

The authority and responsibility for the administration of procedures and programs to provide for the implementation of this policy is assigned to the Office of the Vice President, Administration.

The Risk Management Support Group is responsible for facilitating the development, implementation and auditing of the Health and Safety Programs effective under this policy. This is achieved through the implementation of a risk management system that is directed at supporting the Internal Responsibility System through the application of best practices for the management of occupational, environmental, public health and safety related risks.

The Office of the Vice President, Administration will provide reports to the University Board of Governors concerning the status and effectiveness of the Workplace and Environmental Health and Safety Program and any notices of violation issued to the University regarding breaches of workplace health and safety of environmental protection statutes.

Signed by the President and Vice-Chancellor, McMaster University, at the beginning of the year.

(Transcribed directly from Program #100 of McMaster University’s Risk Management Manual (RMM).)

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