BVTU Health and Safety

 

Please read through this page if you are new to health and safety as a teacher.

 

School health and safety representatives are the people to talk to about any workplace health and safety concerns.

Ideally, the health and safety knowledge rests on the shoulders OF EVERYONE AT EVERY WORKSITE.

WorkSafe BC Joint Occupational Health and Safety Committees

 

There are four essential BCTF workshops on health and safety that every teacher would benefit from having taken in the last three years. There is release time available. These workshops are:

#1 - Joint Occupational Health and Safety Committees (JOSH Committees) & Worker Representatives

#2 - Occupational Health and Safety Training for New Committee Members and Worker Representatives

#3 - Refusal of Unsafe Work

#4 - Incident Investigations and Reports

 

THE ABOVE WORKSHOPS ARE CONFIRMED.

MAY 7 & 8, 2024.

BOTH DAYS ARE PAID RELEASE BY THE BCTF. 

SIX (6) SPOTS ARE OPEN. FIRST COME, FIRST SERVED.

CONTACT LP54@BCTF.CA TO GET ON THE LIST. 

 

District Occupational Health and Safety Committee

Jamie Burns at SSS is the BVTU Health and Safety representative on the District Health and Safety Committee.

Also on this committee are the BVTU Local President, the CUPE Local President; Rolanda Lavallee, the district safety manager; Dave Margerm, the secretary-treasurer, and other district level staff.

The contract language for this committee is found in our collective agreement, article D.24. 

 

2023 2024 Health and Safety Representatives at each worksite:  

Silverthorne Elementary: Stephanie Yeker

Twain Sullivan Elementary: Tanya Margerm

Houston Secondary: Caitlin Langford

Telkwa Elementary: Kathy McIntyre

Muheim Elementary: Jessica Hitchmough

Walnut Park Elementary: Shawna Espersen

Smithers Secondary: Jody Barber

PLEASE NOTE:

There is also mandatory employer-released WorkSafe BC training.

The WorkSafe BC regulations (laws) on this mandated training and the training opportunities themselves should have been clearly communicated by the empoyer and taken by the employee. The text from the WorkSafe BC site re this training is below:

Mandatory training

The requirements for mandatory training are different for joint committee members and worker health and safety representatives.

Joint committees : All joint committee members selected on or after April 3, 2017 must receive eight hours of training and instruction on the following topics: a) The duties and functions of a joint committee b) The rules of procedure of the joint committee c) The requirements around conducting incident investigations d) The requirements around conducting regular workplace inspections, and how to make regular inspections e) The requirements around responding to a refusal of unsafe work f) The requirements for annually evaluating the joint committee g) Learning materials, including a 2-hour online component, are available to address these training requirements.

Worker health and safety representatives: All worker health and safety representatives selected on or after April 3, 2017 must receive four hours of training and instruction on the following topics: a) The duties and functions of a joint committee b) The requirements around conducting incident investigations c) The requirements around conducting regular workplace inspections, and how to make regular inspections d) The requirements around responding to a refusal of unsafe work e) The Worker Health and Safety Representative Fundamentals online course addresses this required training for worker health and safety representatives in workplaces without a joint committee.

Annual education leave: Each joint committee member and worker health and safety rep is entitled to eight hours of leave per year to attend occupational health and safety training courses.

 

 

WORKPLACE VIOLENCE IS A HEALTH AND SAFETY ISSUE.

WorkSafe BC's definition of workplace violence is:

"The attempted or actual exercise by a person, other than a worker, of any physical force so as to cause injury to a worker and includes any threatening statement or behaviour which gives a worker reasonable cause to believe that he or she is at risk of injury."

  • Teachers want to support the wide range of student needs; in order to do so, teachers need to be self-regulated, calm, and compassionate.
  • In order for teachers to be self-regulated, calm and compassionate -- teachers need to know they are safe at work.
  • Above and beyond employers having a vested interest in worker safety for this reason, worker safety is the law.

In October 2023, the LP had 2 meetings with BCTFs health and safety primary contact. Please see here for the minutes from that meeting. In January 2024 the LP emailed out the following resources that focus on violence in the workplace.

Communicating risk information to prevent violence-related injuries to workers

WorkSafe BC WORKSAFE BULLETIN: Communicate student information - Prevent violence related injuries to workers in the education sector

SD54 Violence in the Workplace 6.410

Violence in the Workplace Presentation

Creating and Managing a Healthy and Safe Workplace

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