Overview

The Prevention Council advises the Minister of Labour and the Chief Prevention Officer on a wide range of occupational health and safety issues, including:

  • prevention of workplace injuries and illnesses
  • development of the provincial occupational health and safety strategy, and
  • any significant proposed changes to funding and delivery of services under the Occupational Health and Safety Act.

Membership

Council membership reflects representation from a broad range of organizations and interests. For information on current Prevention Council members, please visit the Public Appointment Secretariat website.

Expenses

Under the Agencies and Appointments Directive and the Travel, Meal and Hospitality Expenses Directive, provincial agencies are required to post their expense information for designated individuals.

Individuals at provincial agencies can claim and be reimbursed for necessary travel, meal and hospitality expenses they incur during the course of agency work. They need to follow strict rules, outlining what can be repaid with public funds and what maximum amounts can be claimed.

All claims must include original receipts.

Download data

2015-2016 expenses (.zip)

The Governance and Operating Framework

The purpose of this document is to provide Prevention Council members and the prevention community in general with an understanding of the governance and accountability framework as it applies to them in their capacity as appointees to the Council. The goal is to achieve clarity on roles, responsibilities and expectations of Council members as we work together to strengthen Ontario's occupational health and safety system and improve health and safety in the workplace.

The authority to establish the Prevention Council is provided by the Occupational Health and Safety Act (OHSA). Section 22.2 of the Act requires the Minister to establish the Prevention Council, appoint its members, specify the composition, set out its functions, and appoint a Chief Prevention Officer ("CPO").

The Prevention Council will review the governance framework every 18 to 24 months, excluding statutory requirements under the OHSA.

Operating Principles

The operation of the Prevention Council is guided by the following principles:

Focus on Workplace Health and Safety

The primary focus of the Prevention Council is to improve worker health and safety in the workplace – including the elements, policies and programs of the Occupational Health and Safety system concerned with prevention and enforcement.

Broad Engagement

Prevention Council members are committed to engaging, and seeking input from workplace stakeholders in a meaningful way to support the work of Council.

Reliance on Evidence-Based Research

Where appropriate and feasible, the Prevention Council's advice and recommendations are supported by the best available data and evidence-based research. It is recognized that there will be occasions when evidence-based research will not be available. In these situations the Council is committed to having an inclusive, full discussion on the issues at hand.

Collaboration

Prevention Council members, while representing different constituencies, are committed to working collaboratively in the preparation of their advice and recommendations to the Minister.

Transparency

Prevention Council members keep their stakeholders informed on the status of the Council's activities.

Appointment of Members to the Prevention Council

The OHSA stipulates that the members appointed to the Prevention Council must be representative of the key workplace partners (labour and employers) and that an equal number of members will represent each of these partners. In addition, that there is representation from non-unionized workers, the Workplace Safety and Insurance Board, and occupational health and safety experts - this group cannot be larger than one-third of the size of the Prevention Council.

The Minister will appoint 11 persons to the Prevention Council:

  • 4 employer representatives
  • 4 labour representatives
  • 1 non-union worker representative
  • 1 occupational health and safety expert
  • 1 Workplace Safety and Insurance Board representative

Representativeness

It is recognized that the diversity of the stakeholder and prevention community cannot be reflected in its entirety on the Prevention Council at any one point in time but that every effort will be made to ensure representation over time or through other activities.

The appointees to the Prevention Council are committed to representing the broad interests of the workplace partners, vulnerable workers, and include expertise from the prevention community. In addition to the selection criteria set out in the law (see OHSA Section 22.2) the following should be taken into account.

  • All members must be prepared to serve the interests of prevention irrespective of partisan or sectoral interests and mandates.
  • The members of Council should undertake to determine the views of their network, present these views to Council, keep their networks informed and work to build support within their networks for Council advice and decisions.

Prevention Council Member Selection Criteria

The Expert Advisory Panel on Occupational Health and Safety indicated that an optimal and effective Council requires high level involvement of employers, labour and other major stakeholders. This requires strong and committed members.

  • The selection of members takes into account the knowledge, experience, and attributes of candidates, including:
    • Knowledge of the prevention issues facing Ontario;
    • Understanding of the diverse nature of prevention in workplaces;
    • Recognized as a leader with a demonstrated commitment to prevention;
    • Strategic thinking and sound judgement;
    • Integrity;
    • Ability to work together with others, and collaborate effectively in consensual decision-making;
    • Effective communication skills;
    • Results-oriented.
  • The members should reflect representation from as broad a range of organizations and interests as possible from:
    • Small, medium and large organizations
    • Trade unions
    • Labour associations
    • Individuals with expertise in prevention
    • Community organizations
    • Groups representing vulnerable and injured workers
    • Non-union worker organizations
    • Academic community
    • Workplace Safety and Insurance Board

    Where these interests are not directly represented, members undertake to develop and include them in their network.

  • The members should reflect representation from a range of economic sectors to the extent possible:
    • Industrial / utilities
    • Agriculture
    • Services
    • Construction
    • Manufacturing
    • Broader Public Sector

Where these interests are not directly represented, members undertake to develop and include them in their network.

The members undertake to represent views from all regions of Ontario.

Prevention Council Chair

The OHSA requires the members of the Prevention Council to choose the Chair by a date fixed by the Minister, failing which the Minister will choose the Chair. Unless appointed by the Minister, the Chair serves at the pleasure of the Council. The Chair may be replaced by a vote of more than two-thirds of the members. It is critical that the Chair:

  • Have the capacity to act in a neutral, even-handed manner;
  • Be a consensus-builder;
  • Be results-oriented and outcome focused.

The Chair will preside over all Council meetings, provide recommendations to the Minister regarding Prevention Council appointments, act as the principal liaison between Council members and the CPO, serve as a conduit of information from Council members to the CPO, and promote Council member dialogue.

Term of Appointments

The Prevention Council Chair and its members will be appointed for such term as may be determined by the Minister.

The Minister has the authority to retract an appointment.

Meetings

There shall be at least four meetings a year of the Prevention Council members. Fourteen days notice shall be provided of such in-person meetings. Additional meetings may be scheduled on an as needed basis.

Roles and Responsibilities

The Prevention Council has been established under the authority of the OHSA. The Council operates within the governance and accountability framework of the Ontario government.

The roles and responsibilities of the Minister, Prevention Council Chair and its members, and the CPO flow from the OHSA, from other statutes like the Public Service of Ontario Act, 2006, and from directives issued by the Management Board of Cabinet. These roles, responsibilities and accountabilities are reflected in the Memorandum of Understanding between the Minister and the Council Chair working in conjunction with the Council.

Prevention Council Role

Prevention Council members are appointed to serve the government, the prevention system, and the public in general, within a well-established framework.

The principal responsibility of the Prevention Council is to provide advice:

  • To the Minister on the appointment of a CPO;
  • To the Minister through the CPO on the prevention of workplace injuries, fatalities, and occupational diseases, for the purpose of supporting the implementation of the Integrated Occupational Health and Safety Strategy and the annual report, on any significant proposed changes to funding and delivery of services of the designated entities, and any other matter as the Minister determines.

Prevention Council Responsibility

Members also have a number of responsibilities consequent upon accepting appointment to the Prevention Council, including:

  • Attending regularly scheduled meetings in person;
  • Being prepared for and contributing to the deliberations of the Council;
  • Representing their networks;
  • Providing advice that promotes the interests of prevention in workplaces and contributes to the elimination of occupational injury and disease
  • Working collaboratively with other members to deliver the best possible advice to the CPO and the Minister.

Decision-Making

The Prevention Council brings together a group of individuals representing diverse interests, viewpoints and opinions. Given these differences, it is important that members respect each other's expertise and perspective. A respectful environment will ensure that knowledge, information and views are shared openly and that individual contributions, thoughts and opinions are valued and receive equal consideration.

While respecting different constituencies, Prevention Council must be committed to working collaboratively in the preparation of their advice and recommendations to the Minister and the CPO. The Prevention Council will strive for consensus decision-making – a group process that seeks not only the agreement of the participants but also the resolution or mitigation of minority objections. Dissenting opinions will be tabled and respected, and compromises will be sought so that consensus can be reached.

Accountability Framework

The Minister, Chair of the Prevention Council, its members and the CPO all have key roles to play in the development of an effective prevention system. The Memorandum of Understanding will describe the accountability that each has in fulfilling these roles.

Performance Evaluation

The CPO will collaborate with the Prevention Council to develop an evaluation framework to assess the performance of the Council its members as well as the support systems to allow Prevention Council to undertake its work. The framework will be described in the Memorandum of Understanding.

Conflict of Interest and Ethics

Council members must be aware of and adhere to the Ontario government conflict of interest policies that will be described in the Memorandum of Understanding to be developed between the Minister and the Chair. The CPO will undertake to provide guidance and training in these policies to members of Council.

Scheduled Meetings and Minutes

DateMinutes
April 20, 2016Read Minutes
February 17, 2016Read Minutes
June 11, 2015Read Minutes
April 16, 2015Read Minutes
December 4, 2014Read Minutes
September 11, 2014Read Minutes
April 10, 2014Read Minutes
February 13, 2014Read Minutes
December 11, 2013Read Minutes
September 11, 2013Read Minutes
June 13, 2013Read Minutes
April 11, 2013Read Minutes
February 13, 2013Read Minutes
December 4, 2012Read Minutes
September 28, 2012Read Minutes