March 7, 2019
The Joint Health and Safety Committees (JHSC) Certification Training Standard is being amended to reduce the burden on business while maintaining standardized high-quality training accessible to all workers across Ontario.

On Jan. 31 2019, Ontario Minister of Labour, Laurie Scott announced changes to bring the province’s health and safety training into the 21st century. These changes mean 50,000 Ontario workplaces no longer need to send workers for a five-day classroom course. Spending up to five days away from family was unfair to Ontario workers and was a major cost to Ontario job creators. These changes will save Ontario businesses and other organizations an estimated $5 million per year.

The improvements include:
  • Allowing Part One JHSC training to be fully delivered via eLearning.
  • Adjusting the minimum duration for eLearning to utilize technology and reflect self-paced learning.
  • Extending the time to complete Part Two JHSC training to within a year of completing Part One JHSC training.
  • Simplifying rules to create straightforward timelines for training and eliminating the need to submit forms.

“I am committed to creating fair and competitive processes for business, dynamic labour markets and safe workplaces for every worker in Ontario,” said Laurie Scott, Minister of Labour. “Our government will make Ontario Open for Business and Open for Jobs by making our province the best jurisdiction in North America to recruit, retain and reward the workers of today and tomorrow.”

Allowing the option of online training, in addition to the existing options of classroom, distance and blended learning will reduce travel and accommodation expenses for businesses. Businesses will no longer have to pay for travel and accommodation costs for employees to travel for up to five days to take in-person training.

“Joint health and safety committees are a cornerstone of a well-functioning workplace internal responsibility system. These improvements will help workplaces promote a strong health and safety culture by meeting the needs of both employers and workers,” said Ron Kelusky, Ontario’s Chief Prevention Officer.

Learners will still have the option to take Part One JHSC training by attending an in-class training program or by distance learning and blended learning (mix of in-class and online) formats. Learners will be required to cover the same content and achieve the same learning outcomes, regardless of delivery mode. eLearning has been shown to reduce the time it takes to complete the course while covering the same amount of material. One day, or 6.5 hours, is the minimum duration for eLearning, but the learner could take longer to complete the course content.

The option of eLearning will only be available for Part One training. Part Two JHSC training will continue to be delivered in a classroom setting with a minimum duration of two days.

Once the changes come into effect, the new requirements will be outlined in the JHSC Certification Training Program Standard. There will also be changes to the training provider application. If you have a JHSC Certification eLearning program that you wish to offer you will be able to apply to have your training program approved. The process for applying will remain, however there will be new guidance available for applicants.

These changes are expected to come into effect after the updated Standard is posted later this year.

For more information, visit the Ontario Ministry of Labour website at