Workers Health & Safety Centre

'Silent spreaders' and COVID transmission focus of WHSC webinar

Experience and research evidence confirm that individuals with no symptoms can transmit the COVID-19 virus. This has profound implications for our communities and our workplaces.
When a World Health Organization official pronounced asymptomatic people rarely spread the virus, she set off a fire storm amid growing evidence to the contrary. Scientists from the U.S. Centers for Disease Control attribute 40 per cent of COVID transmissions to those who demonstrate no symptoms, although some studies have found transmission rates to be more than 50 per cent.

Knowledge that asymptomatic transmission is not only possible, but probable must inform public policy including reasonable precautions to protect worker health and safety. Scores of doctors, nurses and other health care professionals are among those opposed to recently revised guidance from Ontario’s Chief Medical Officer of Health which allows asymptomatic workers to continue to work if they are “critical to operations” and follow public health directives. Critics say the guidance creates an unacceptable public health hazard especially for vulnerable migrant agricultural workers, but also for the communities in which they live.

This webinar in the WHSC Confronting COVID-19 series explores how our understanding of asymptomatic individuals, sometimes called silent spreaders, has grown in recent months and how this knowledge must shape safeguards for workers in all workplaces. Be sure to watch and share.
Also available for downloading and sharing is the PowerPoint developed in support of this webinar.

WHSC virtual training & COVID-19 docs

WHSC webinars, our virtual training classrooms and many COVID-19 resources are made available during these unprecedented and challenging times to help ensure workers, supervisors, joint health and safety committee members and others have access to a trusted source of training and information. Register today for any one of a growing list of WHSC virtual training classrooms. 

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WHSC role

As Ontario’s only designated health and safety training centre, WHSC supports workers, their representatives, supervisors, contractors and employers in every work sector with comprehensive training programs and information services. In all we do, we put workers first.  After all, it is their lives and livelihoods that are affected most when workplace hazards, including the COVID-19 virus go uncontrolled.

To learn more: 
Call: 1-888-869-7950