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Safety for New and Young Workers

Best practices for keeping new hires safe on your job site

Young workers and new workers of any age are often keen to learn and can bring new ideas and renewed energy to your workplace, however…

Keep in mind that… young workers often can’t recognize health and safety hazards and hesitate to ask questions…new and young workers are much more likely to be injured on the job.

Supervisors’ obligations under the Occupational Health and Safety Act (OHSA) include the duty to:

  • Ensure that workers perform their jobs in the way that is required by law, using the equipment and protective devices that are required by law and the employer.
  • Explain actual and potential, general and job-specific, workplace hazards.
  • Provide workers with written measures and procedures for their protection where required by law.

Be a leader in workplace health and safety!

Consider these best practices:

  • Spend more time explaining the job, providing training and supervising new and young workers.
  • Explain safety rules and make sure they’re followed.
  • Explain the importance of prompt reporting of health and safety concerns.
  • Be available to answer questions and provide advice about workplace health and safety.
  • Lead by example: wear required protective equipment and always reinforce the importance of working safely.
  • Give new workers a guided tour of the entire workplace.
  • Introduce new and young workers to key people in the organization, including the Health and Safety Manager, Health and Safety Committee members or Health and Safety Representative.
  • Use information about workplace injuries and deaths to reinforce the health and safety message.
  • Continually remind workers of the importance of health and safety.
  • Arrange for experienced, safety-conscious workers to coach new and young workers.
  • If safety rules are not being followed find out why — and make sure they are followed!

Bottom line

Supervisors, you play an important role in helping workers under your supervision to keep safe. Be a role model for new and young workers starting out. Be a leader in workplace health and safety.

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