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Introduction to Workplace Hazardous Materials Information System (WHMIS): A Guide to the Legislation

  • ISBN: 978-1-4249-6996-8
  • Revised: August 2008
  • Content last reviewed: June 2009

This guideline is being updated to reflect changes that take effect July 1, 2016 as amendments to the WHMIS regulation, Regulation 860, come into force.

This guide is intended to give suppliers, employers, workers and regulators a basic understanding of WHMIS (Workplace Hazardous Materials Information System), and to direct readers to more comprehensive information, if needed.

Chapters 1 and 2 give an overview of WHMIS and the relevant legislation.

Chapter 3 outlines the federal WHMIS legislation and the duties of a supplier of hazardous materials intended for use in the workplace.

Chapter 4 is the focus of the guide. It explains Ontario's WHMIS legislation and the duties of an employer in charge of a worksite where hazardous materials are used.

Chapter 5 briefly describes the rights and responsibilities of the worker.

Chapter 6 deals with two specific applications of WHMIS, namely, the requirements for laboratories and for construction projects.

Chapter 7 describes how confidential business information is protected under WHMIS.

Chapter 8 compares WHMIS and the Transportation of Dangerous Goods legislation.

Chapter 9 explains the enforcement of the WHMIS legislation.

Chapter 10 is a collection of frequently asked questions and answers about WHMIS. The questions are based on actual inquiries made to the Ministry of Labour and are intended to illustrate specific workplace problems and solutions.

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