The Local 115 OH&S Committee has had a busy and successful year. In March we saw the election of a member to the committee to assist Kathleen in investigating OH&S concerns brought to the committee. In April, the committee presented to the CEO designate about ongoing concerns about worker and patient safety on PCU 26. A PCU 26 and Protection Services working group came out of that presentation that supported providing a safe environment for both staff and patients. September saw PCU 71/72 struggling with violence in the workplace, the Local 115 OH&S Committee met with staff to hear their concerns and then with the management team to review staff concerns and that unit’s HIAC (Hazard Identification, Assessment and Control). From that meeting, we were able to acquire Non-Violent Crisis Intervention (NVCI) training to support staff when dealing with challenging patients and an education roll-out plan. PCU 27 approached the committee with a concern that they felt nursing was being asked to do a non-nursing duty, after discussions with the unit’s management team, the task in question was determined to no longer be a nursing duty and would be carried out by a dialysis tech.
All members are encouraged to review the HIAC (Hazard Identification, Assessment and Control) for their position annually. The HIAC worksheets must be readily available to workers, if not please ask your manager to provide. Affected workers are to be involved in completion and review of HIAC worksheets, a complete review is to be completed every 3 years at a minimum. By conducting a hazard assessment, workplace hazards are identified, assessed then controls are put in place to ensure that hazards are eliminated or reduced, ultimately creating a safe and healthy workplace.
Workplace violence is being reported more and more each year. Workplace Violence means any act in which a person is abused, threatened, intimidated or assaulted in his or her employment. Workplace violence can be non-physical and/or physical and can include verbal (swearing, insults, or condescending language) or written threats with an expression of intent to inflict harm. It can also include harassment (any behaviour that demeans, embarrasses, humiliates, annoys, alarms or verbally abuses a person that is known or would be expected to be unwelcome) or includes words, gestures, intimidation, bullying, or other inappropriate activities.
UNA is dedicated in supporting our members when these incidents occur and support ongoing efforts to improve policies and procedures to reduce and eliminate abuse against employees. The Local 115 OH&S Committee is only able to assist its members when we are made aware of OH&S concerns in the workplace. We need members to stand up and speak up when incidents occur or there is potential harm to workers. Do not hesitate to connect with a member of the Local 115 Exec Team or OH&S Committee if you have any concerns on your unit.
Laura Muenchrath “Never stop believing that fighting for what’s right is worth it.” – Hillary Clinton