Human Resources and Social Development Canada

Human Resources and Social Development Canada

June 25, 2008 15:52 ET

The Government of Canada Announces Appointments to the Canadian Centre for Occupational Health and Safety

OTTAWA, ONTARIO--(Marketwire - June 25, 2008) - The Honourable Jean-Pierre Blackburn, Minister of Labour and Minister of the Economic Development Agency of Canada for the Regions of Quebec, today announced the following appointments to the Council of Governors of the Canadian Centre for Occupational Health and Safety (CCOHS): Mr. Matthew Firth as a governor representing workers, Mr. Gordon Lloyd as a governor representing employers, Mr. Murray P. Sunstrum as a governor representing employers, and Ms. Susanna Zagar as governor representing the Province of Ontario. The appointments are effective immediately.

"I am pleased to announce the appointment of these individuals," said Minister Blackburn. "The Centre will certainly benefit from their extensive knowledge and valuable experience in health and safety."

From 1994 to 2000, Mr. Firth was a technical writer, researcher, editor and consultant for various organizations such as Windsor Occupational Health Information Service and Occupation Health Clinics for Ontario Workers. Since August 2000, he has been working for the Canadian Union of Public Employees as Senior Officer of the Health and Safety Branch, where he provides support and technical advice on occupational health and safety and environmental issues to employees. Mr. Firth holds a Master of Arts in Sociology from Queen's University in Kingston, Ontario, and a Bachelor of Environmental Studies from the University of Waterloo, Ontario.

Mr. Lloyd was with the Canadian Manufacturers' Association from 1977 to 1990, working in the areas of legislation and policy. Since October 1990, he has been Vice-President of Technical Affairs for the Canadian Chemical Producers' Association. He develops and implements programs for the continuous improvement of health and safety measures for the industry. Mr. Lloyd holds a Bachelor of Law, a Bachelor of Arts, and a Bachelor of Science in Physics and Mathematics from the University of Manitoba.

Mr. Sunstrum worked as Manager of Technical Services of the Canadian Association of Oilwell Drilling Contractors from 1997 to 2002. He joined the Canadian Petroleum Safety Council in 2002, as Executive Director, and became the Council's Vice-President of Safety Services in 2005. In his current position, Mr. Sunstrum plans and executes major safety initiatives and works with industry leaders to develop industry-wide safety standards. He holds a Bachelor of Commerce from the Haskayne School of Management, University of Calgary, Alberta.

Working for the Ontario Ministry of Labour, Ms. Zagar has been actively involved in the field of labour and employment for a number of years. As Assistant Deputy Minister of Policy, Program Development and Dispute Resolution Services, she has shown a commitment to sound public policy outcomes. Ms. Zagar holds a Bachelor of Arts in Criminology from Simon Fraser University in Burnaby, British Columbia, and has completed the Ivey School of Business Executive Program at the University of Western Ontario in London, and the Queen's Public Executive Program at Queen's University in Kingston, Ontario.

The internationally known CCOHS, located in Hamilton, Ontario, was created in 1978 to promote the fundamental right of Canadians to a healthy and safe working environment. Governed by the federal, provincial and territorial governments, employers and workers, the Centre provides Canadians with unbiased and relevant information that supports responsible decision-making on health and safety issues in the workplace.

For more information on the Centre, please visit

This news release is available in alternative format upon request.

Contact Information

  • Office of Minister Blackburn
    Michael Winterburn
    Director, Parliamentary Affairs and Communications
    Human Resources and Social Development Canada
    Media Relations Office