Human Resources and Social Development Canada

Human Resources and Social Development Canada

June 17, 2008 09:30 ET

Minister Blackburn Announces New Regulations to Prevent Workplace Violence

OTTAWA, ONTARIO--(Marketwire - June 17, 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 coming into force of new regulations to prevent violence in federally-regulated workplaces.

"The Government of Canada believes that workers have every right to expect a workplace that is healthy, safe and free of the risk of violence," said Minister Blackburn. "These new regulations will help to keep Canada's labour force safe, healthy and competitive. Canada is taking another step in its efforts to build the model workplace."

Under the new regulations, employers must develop a policy to prevent workplace violence, including bullying, teasing, or abusive behaviour, and provide training for all workers who are exposed to or who are at risk of workplace violence. They are also required to assess and evaluate the risk and potential for workplace violence, and put controls in place to prevent workplace hazards and to investigate acts of violence. As well, employers are required to assess the effectiveness of their policy and measures at least every 3 years and update them as necessary.

"These violence regulations represent the most comprehensive of their type in any jurisdiction across Canada, added Hussan Yussuff, Secretary-Treasury of the Canadian Labour Congress. The Minister and the Labour Program should be complimented on the energy and effort that was put into bringing these regulations to fruition."

"FETCO believes that the Violence in the Workplace Regulations show once again the value of tripartitism, said Mr. George Smith, President of the Federally-Regulated Employers in Transportation and Communication (FETCO). "The regulations themselves were developed in close collaboration with employers, unions, and the Labour Program. This has resulted in a more effective regulation dealing with this serious social issue".

At the recent meeting of federal, provincial and territorial ministers responsible for labour held in Quebec City in January 2008, all labour ministers pledged to work together on the issue of violence prevention in the workplace as an integral part of achieving healthy and safe workplaces across Canada.

These regulations affect sectors under federal labour jurisdiction such as banking, interprovincial and international transportation, broadcasting, federal Crown corporations and the federal public service.

This news release is available in alternative formats upon request.

Contact Information

  • Office of Minister Blackburn
    Michael Winterburn
    Human Resources and Social Development Canada
    Media Relations Office
    Labour Program Web site: