Are you aware that your business is legally required to conduct Legislative Training for yourself and all of your staff? Do you know why it is mandatory? When businesses grow beyond a few employees, the business owner or the supervisor cannot be with all of the employees all the time. So all of the employees must know how to work safely.
The key is to educate them about safety practices and HR policies through a comprehensive training program. Legislative training is an indispensable way to keep your organization and its employees safe.
What is legislative training?
A legislative training is intended to inform employees about the risks involved in their work. The training must cover safety measures, policies and procedures that have to be followed to ensure workplace safety. The mandatory Legislative Training ensures employers understand their responsibilities, and employees understand their rights.
Though every organization’s training needs are unique, training every worker on the following topics is mandatory for almost every workplace in Canada:
Key Legislative Policies
Employees have to know that there are HR policies in place that has to be followed and how these policies protect them as much as it protects the employer. As an example, employees have to follow the Workplace Harassment Policy, and the employer must provide the training to create awareness on unacceptable behaviour in the workplace.
Occupational Health and Safety Training under the Health and Safety Act requires businesses to ensure that all of their workers and supervisors complete a basic awareness program on occupational health and safety.
Training on Workplace Hazardous Material Information System (WHMIS) is done to educate the employees and supervisors about the hazardous materials they may be exposed to at work. There are two types of WHMIS training:
- Generic WHMIS training
- Workplace specific training
AODA Training (Only for Ontario)
As per the official website of Ontario: “ The Accessibility for Ontarians with Disabilities Act (AODA) is a law that sets out a process for developing and enforcing accessibility standards. Persons with disabilities and industry representatives work together with the government to develop the standards.”
An AODA training gives employees basic knowledge about accessibility, and how it affects people with disabilities.
Reasons your employees must undergo legislative training
It is deemed mandatory by the Government Employers in Canada must meet specific training requirements to comply with provincial and federal regulations. The training requirements vary based on the province and the industry. Each of the three territories, ten provinces, and the federal government has its own Occupational Health and Safety legislation, and there is separate legislation that applies to hazardous materials (WHIMS)
1. Helps in staying compliant
HR Compliance doesn’t end with having the perfect employee handbook or all the HR policies documented. You need to provide training to help your staff, seasonal staff, and volunteers follow internal policies and ensure they meet legislative requirements at your company.
Staying compliant with training requirements helps protect your organization from hefty fines and lawsuits to a certain extend. As per the latest update on Administrative Monetary Penalties, non-compliant employers can be fined up to $250,000 along with public naming.
2. Creates awareness among employees
The training will educate employees about the legislative policies and motivate them to respect and follow these policies. Employees will also know about the possible hazards in their work and get the necessary information to avoid and tackle these and to protect their health and safety on the job.
3. Avoids Discrimination, Harassment and Injuries
When there are strict policies to keep discrimination and harassment in check, educating employees on these policies will create a safe working culture that is repulsive of all sorts of misbehaviour. Safety training will enable employees to work safely and to report or refuse any unsafe work and thereby avoiding complexities.
4. Improves staff morale and human relations
A workplace atmosphere should be characterized by mutual trust, and there should not be any room for intimidation, oppression and exploitation. Legislative training programs ensure a working environment in which employees are treated with dignity, decency and respect.
5. Protects your business
Risk is a critical component in every business operation. However, keeping those risks to a bare minimum is the key to the survival of the business. By providing legislative training to your staff, you are mitigating the risks of harassment allegations, discriminatory issues, injuries, hefty fines and above all, legal suites!
6. Prevents occupational disorders or diseases
Educating employees on appropriate ergonomics and instructing them on methods to avoid risks of direct exposure to hazardous materials will prevent several occupational disorders and diseases.
7. Reduce supervisory needs
Once you train all of your staff, you need to keep an eye on each of your employees and don’t need your supervisor to spend time instructing employees from time to time. The supervisors can spend this time on things that need more attention in the core business process.
8. Saves money
By providing legislative training, you are mitigating legal risks and minimizing the chances of getting fined and suffering a business loss. Keeping legal and financial risks miles away will save you a lot of money.
How to implement legislative training?
Be mindful of the following before you implement a training plan.
- Training modules vary from industry to industry.
- Supervisors and employees including non-seasonal staff and volunteers must be trained.
- Employers must maintain a record of training completed by workers and supervisors.
- Training must include information about recognizing workplace violence & safety procedures.
- Training should be repeated whenever there is a significant change to the policy and when hiring new employees.
So how do you implement the training? Hiring a qualified and experienced HR expert is an option; however, the average salary of such professional ranges between CAD79000 and CAD100,000. The most beneficial way is to collaborate with an organization that offers the best legislative training programs.