FYI MAY25

FYI… There has been some issue that we have exercised our right to refuse.
Please read your rights.

Right to Refuse Work

The Occupational Health and Safety Act (OHSA) gives a worker the right to refuse work that he or she believes is unsafe to himself/ herself or another worker. A worker who believes that he or she is endangered by workplace violence may also refuse work.

The Act sets out a specific procedure that must be followed in any work refusal. It is important that workers, employers, supervisors, members of joint health and safety committees (JHSCs and health and safety representatives understand the procedure for a lawful work refusal.

Do all workers have the right to refuse unsafe work?

The right to refuse unsafe work applies to all workers other than specified types of workers in specified circumstances. For further information, please refer to subsections 43(1) and (2) of the Act.

In specified circumstances, the right to refuse unsafe work is limited for:

police officers
firefighters
workers employed in the operation of correctional institutions and similar institutions/facilities
health care workers and persons employed in workplaces like hospitals, nursing homes, sanatoriums, homes for the aged, psychiatric institutions, mental health centres or rehabilitation facilities, residential group homes for persons with behavioural or emotional problems or a physical, mental or developmental disability, ambulance services, first aid clinics, licensed laboratories—or in any laundry, food service, power plant or technical service used by one of the above [subsection 43(2)].