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Truro – CUPE Nova Scotia President Danny Cavanagh says today’s announcement that five more workplace safety inspectors will be hired is a good first step, but there is much, much more to be done in our province.

Says Cavanagh, “This is a tangible measure to increase workplace health and safety. Now let’s see how committed our new government is to increasing the enforcement of our existing OH&S laws and, in fact, strengthening those laws so that employers are held to account.

It is simply unacceptable that workers are falling to their deaths on construction sites in this province. We can only conclude that employers in this sector and supervisors at those worksites are not enforcing the current laws. We already have laws that require those workers to wear safety harnesses,” says Cavanagh.

Cavanagh says, “If the labour minister wants to send a clear message to those employers, she has it within her power to change the ‘costs’ associated with unsafe workplaces by making the fines much stiffer. She could also maintain a commitment from the previous government to direct the prosecution service to pursue criminal charges when accidents are caused by the negligence of employers.”

Adds Cavanagh, “The regulations allowing safety inspectors to issue fines are currently under revision, so doubling the fine schedule for employers would send a clear message that workers’ safety comes first.” 

One workplace fatality is one too many,” says Cavanagh.


For information:

Danny Cavanagh      
CUPE NS President    
(902) 957-0822 (Cell)     

John Brookfield
CUPE OH&S Representative
(902) 455-4180 (o)

John McCracken
CUPE Communications Representative
(902) 455-4180 (o)