Occupational Diseases Initiative
The Occupational Diseases Initiative for 2016–2018 uses a risk-based approach to proactively identify, prioritize, and address the occupational diseases of greatest risk to workers across B.C. This three-year plan focuses on three categories of disease and six primary risk exposures:
- Cancer (asbestos, silica, solar radiation, welding fumes)
- Asthma (sensitizers)
- Poisoning (lead)
- Raise awareness of the risks, hazards, and controls relating to the three targeted categories of occupational disease
- Reduce workplace exposure to the six primary risks
- Increase industry awareness at both the industry and job-task level — Workers and employers that fully understand the risks are more likely to take steps to reduce exposure
- Create officer support tools — Officers that fully understand the risks and have the tools to explain them are better able to help employers and workers reduce exposure
- Conduct targeted inspection programs that focus enforcement activity on the employers with the highest risk exposures — Targeting helps us reach the workers and employers that most need to mitigate the risks
By targeting diseases instead of limiting the scope to risks within specific industries, we are able to partner with external organizations that focus on those same diseases. This will give us a new perspective and allow us to conduct research and communicate across multiple industries where the operations and job activities might differ, but where the same disease outcomes exist.
Updates and results
WorkSafeBC’S High Risk Strategies and Industry Initiatives identify and target industries and employers with a high risk of serious workplace injury and a significant contribution to the serious injury rate. Each strategy focuses prevention initiatives on identified areas of high risk in order to apply resources and effort where they will be most effective. As part of our strategic initiative to develop measures to assess the effectiveness of prevention activities, we are providing updates of our High Risk Strategies and Industry Initiatives.
Note: To save space in bulleted lists, our update documents may refer to occupational health and safety as OHS. All references to the Act, refer to Part Three of the Workers Compensation Act. Penalties and warning letters reported in updates may have been initiated by inspections in a previous quarter.