Workers Health & Safety Centre

National workplace violence and harassment survey recently launched

Workers across Canada are encouraged to complete a new online survey to capture their experience and provide feedback on workplace violence and harassment. 

Researchers hope findings from this survey will help inform effective strategies to prevent and respond to incidents of workplace violence and harassment, beyond the legislative minimums currently in place.

Wide participation is encouraged

The National Survey on Harassment and Violence at Work in Canada was launched October 21 and is being conducted by the Canadian Labour Congress (CLC) with researchers at Western University and the University of Toronto. This survey follows an earlier collaboration by the CLC and researchers at Western University to conduct the first ever Canadian survey on domestic violence in the workplace.

The current survey will help assess the prevalence of workplace violence and harassment, but with a special focus on workers who are marginalized due to their social location and/or their precarious employment status. It will also examine the links between sexual harassment and other forms of violence in the workplace and examine any effect the COVID-19 pandemic may have had on worker experiences.
Participation in the survey is voluntary, confidential and anonymous. Anyone 18 years or older who has been employed in the last 12 months can participate. The survey will be available online for six months and will take about 10 to 15 minutes to complete.
Complete the online survey here

Employer obligations

According to a 2018 Statistics Canada report, almost one in five women had been harassed at work at some point during the year while one in every eight men reported similar experiences. Women were found to suffer physical violence at twice the rate of men and were five times as likely to report sexual harassment or unwanted sexual attention

To help address the high incidence of workplace violence and harassment Ontario employers have legal obligations under the Occupational Health and Safety Act (the Act) to develop policies and programs on both. Unfortunately, unlike the violence program requirements, the Act has no specific requirement for the prevention of harassment—an omission many health and safety activists say must be amended. Regardless, employers must provide all workers with information and instruction on the content of the workplace harassment and violence policies and programs.

For employers under federal jurisdiction, amended regulations aimed at preventing work place violence and harassment will come into force on January 1, 2021. Employers will also need to work jointly with worker representatives to meet many of these obligations.  

WHSC can help

Workers Health & Safety Centre (WHSC) offers a range of resources and Mental Health at Work Training including a three-hour Workplace Violence and Harassment training program designed to help workplace parties better understand workplace violence, harassment and bullying, prevent their occurrence and how to fully comply with legal obligations. This important training program has recently been added to our schedule of virtual classroom training. Be sure to register today.

We also offer training programs to help employers meet the training and competency requirements for supervisorsjoint health and safety committees and worker health and safety representatives, who all play essential roles in the pursuit of healthier, safer workplaces including the prevention of workplace violence and harassment. Many of these training essentials are currently scheduled in our virtual classrooms.

Beyond scheduled classes, and where participant numbers warrant, we can work with you to coordinate almost any of our training courses in a virtual classroom for all workers, workplace representatives and supervisors.
Need more information still?
Call: 1-888-896-7950 or contact a WHSC training services representative near you.
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