What is the perfect number of Joint Health and Safety Committee (JHSC) members? The answer may not be straightforward. There’s more to nailing down the ideal mix and number of members than just abiding by the Occupational Health and Safety Act (the Act.)
Determining the correct number and mix of members plays a part in ensuring that your JHSC contributes to your organization’s success.
If you’re not sure whether the mix and number of members on your JHSC is optimal, consider the following:
Is my JHSC Compliant?
Having a JHSC keeps your organization compliant with the requirements of the Act. Compliance is important, as non-compliance can be costly for organizations, and it sends the wrong message to stakeholders.
In Ontario, organizations with 20-49 workers must have at least two certified members on the JHSC; one representing management, one representing workers. Companies with 50+ employees must also have two certified members and two other members.
The Act sets out minimum standards; your JHSC is not limited to two or four members. As well, you are not prohibited from having more than the minimum number of members certified. In fact, it is recommended that all JHSC members get certified.
Is my JHSC Top Heavy?
Management members must never outnumber worker members. Section 9(7) of the Act states that “at least half of a committee shall be workers employed at the workplace who do not exercise managerial functions.”
Does my JHSC Reflect the Workforce?
Your JHSC needs enough members to represent the entire workforce. If your organization employs workers in different areas, departments, or roles, a good mix of JHSC members will include worker representation from all areas. Companies with union and non-union employees should be sure to have representation from both groups as well.
Is my JHSC Diverse?
Adding diversity brings new perspectives to the JHSC and ensures that ideas don’t get stagnate. This may mean adding more members to get a range of ages, cultures, and genders.
Is the Size of my JHSC in line with my Company Size?
A large organization needs a bigger JHSC than a small company. Consider square footage too – physically small workspaces don’t require the same person-power to complete workplace inspections. A business with more than one location may need a JHSC for each location, thereby increasing the number of members, including the total number of certified members.
Is my JHSC Accessible?
Employers have a duty to accommodate, and they also have a responsibility to ensure that all workers have an equal opportunity to join the JHSC. Your organization’s perfect mix of JHSC members may include workers with disabilities, which will ensure diversity and a variety of perspectives.
Best Safety Training Can Help
Best Safety Training is a Chief Prevention Officer (CPO)-approved provider of JHSC training. We offer in-house and on-site JHSC Part One, Part Two, and Refresher training. Let the Best Safety Training company take care of your training needs.
To ask questions about determining the right mix of JHSC members for your unique business, or to learn more, contact us online or call 226.777.7385.