Work Refusal Compliance Centre

One of a worker’s most fundamental rights is the right to refuse unsafe work. Unfortunately, employers too often mishandle work refusals, which can lead to reprisal claims and liability. This centre will help you understand the work refusal process, a supervisor’s role in that process and some traps to avoid when handling work refusals. It also includes tools you can use to document work refusals and cases involving refusals so you can learn from other employers’ mistakes and successes.

Guidance and Insight


Lockout Glossary: How to Keep Your Workplace Drug-Free after Marijuana Is Legalized

From zero tolerance to fitness for duty.

TEST YOUR OHS I.Q.: Was Firing Worker Who Claimed Fear of Workplace Violence Unjust?

An anxious worker complains about a manager's threats. The employer says its safe and tells him to return to work. Can it fire him if he doesn't?

KNOW THE LAWS: Right to Refuse Unsafe Work

This chart shows the general work refusal provisions in each jurisdiction’s OHS law.

‘Tis the Sneezin’ – Does the Flu Give Rise to the Right to Refuse...

This flu season, workers may try to refuse to work due to fears of getting sick. Can they?

Test Your OHS IQ: Does Fear of Attack Justify Work Refusal by Residential Home...

A worker claims delivering food to residents endangers her more than her co-workers. Can she refuse work on this basis?


Model Work Refusal Policy

Adapt this model policy for your OHS program, collective agreement and the work refusal requirements and procedures in the OHS laws in your jurisdiction.

Model Right to Refuse Form

Benefits: Workers have the right to refuse work if they have reasonable grounds to believe the work poses an undue or unnatural hazard to...

Model Work Refusal Report

Primary Source Before you use this tool, you may want to read the further analysis presented here: Is Fear of Violence Grounds for a...