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March 2021 Safety Tip: Your Basic OHS Right to Participate - BCGEU

Did you know that, as a worker, you have the Right to Participate in your workplace Occupational Health and Safety (OHS) program, even if you're not a designated OHS rep? 

The right to participate can take many forms:

  • Reporting a workplace hazard or unsafe working condition to your supervisor;
  • Discussing OHS concerns with your colleagues and health and safety reps;
  • Being consulted on OHS issues that impact the work you do, e.g. ergonomics and workplace violence;

Q: Do you know to who you should report unsafe working conditions?

A: Your Manager on Duty (MOD) is the employer representative on the shop floor and has the agency to resolve unsafe working conditions. You can also speak to your OHS representative, who can bring in the MOD to look at the issue and be your point of contact in case there is follow up needed.

Q: Do you know where to find out who is your OHS rep?

A: Your Safety Board should list all the committee members, and contain important OHS information, such as inspection reports, committee meeting minutes for the last three months (for stores with greater than 20 employees) and any WorkSafeBC orders issued in the last 12 months.

Q: Is there a mechanism to easily report health and safety concerns?

A: Best practice is to have a communication sheet on your OHS board where concerns can be reported, anonymously if need be, so that the committee can follow up. 

Q: How do you know what steps have been taken to fix the situation?

A: All incident reports and, if applicable, remedies should be brought to the monthly OHS meetings to review and look at any emerging patterns. 

It is important to know that according to the Workers Compensation Act, your employer must not dissuade or prevent any worker from reporting unsafe work. 

For more information on OHS at BCGEU please go to

For general inquiries, please contact [email protected]

In solidarity,
BCGEU Component 5 (Retail Stores and Warehouse) Occupational Health and Safety Committee

Download PDF of notice here