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Supervisors? Safety Roles and Responsibilities Language for OHS Policy Statement

Transforming supervisor accountability from theory to practice begins with an OHS Policy Statement that includes a description of supervisors’ safety-related roles and responsibilities. There are two crucial elements to include: i. A description of what/who a supervisor is; and ii. A list of the supervisor’s basic responsibilities based on the supervisors’ duties section of your province’s OHS Act. Here’s Model Language that you can adapt. You may want to use the province-specific version of this Language instead if you’re from Alberta, BC, Nova Scotia, Ontario, Qu‚bec or federally-regulated.


Safety-Related Roles & Responsibilities

All personnel, contractors, and visitors are required to support and will be held accountable for carrying out their responsibilities under the [list name of your jurisdiction’s Occupational Health and Safety Act] and implementing regulations (referred to collectively as ‘OHS laws’), the ABC Company OHS Program and other applicable laws and standards. Substandard health and safety performance from anyone at any level will not be tolerated. The following stakeholders shall have the following responsibilities.

  1. Employer
  2. Managers
  3. Supervisors

Supervisors, including not just those with the title of supervisor but any individual who control, direct, or are in charge of work operations, are responsible for taking all steps reasonably necessary under the circumstances, to protect the health and safety of the workers under their direct supervision, including but not limited to:

  • Being knowledgeable about the OHS laws and other laws, regulations and standards applicable to the work they supervise;
  • Ensuring that all workers under his/her direct supervision are made aware of all known health or safety hazards to which they are exposed;
  • Providing the competent supervision, instruction and safety training required by OHS laws and the ABC Company OHS Program;
  • Ensuring workers are made aware of and competent to carry out all required safe work procedures;
  • Ensuring workers have and properly use required personal protective equipment and safety equipment;
  • Ensuring that all required field and equipment inspections and hazard assessments are properly carried out;
  • Correcting unsafe acts or conditions;
  • Holding workers accountable for complying with all OHS laws, the ABC Company OHS Program and other applicable health and safety laws, regulations and standards;
  • Cooperating with the workplace joint health and safety committee or worker health and safety representative, if there is one;
  • Cooperating with government safety officers or other persons carrying out a duty under the OHS laws; and
  • Leading by example by always working safely and in compliance with health and safety rules.