The National Health and Safety Policy Committee (NHSPC) held a virtual meeting on February 28. Here is an overview of what was discussed.
Prison Needle Exchange Program and Overdose Prevention Site
This item was back on the agenda again. As the employer representative wasn’t present to discuss the project, we didn’t receive any substantive updates. UCCO-SACC-CSN denounced this anomaly and pointed out that someone else could surely have given a progress report. UCCO-SACC-CSN maintained that the employer’s arguments for refusing to set up an overdose prevention site and introducing a prison needle exchange program (PNEP) instead at Bowden do not hold water.
The committee will hold an ad hoc meeting (yet another one!) on the PNEP and the overdose prevention site in the coming weeks. UCCO-SACC-CSN has urged that implementation of the program at new sites be delayed until the meeting is held and the overdose prevention site and PNEP models can be assessed.
Draft LAB-1070 Guidelines
The Correctional Service of Canada (CSC) has released draft guidelines for LAB-1070 reports. The consultation process has begun and UCCO-SACC-CSN will participate and raise any issues that may affect our members.
CX Footwear Allowance and Footwear Hazard Assessment
During the consultation on our bargaining demands, many members brought up the footwear allowance. UCCO-SACC-CSN put the item on the NHSPC’s agenda and gave a brief history of the assessment that was done more than 10 years ago. Given the time that has elapsed, UCCO-SACC-CSN stressed the need to review both the hazard assessment and the allowance. It was agreed that a subcommittee would be formed to address the issue and report back to the NHSPC.
Automated External Defibrillator (AED) Program
In addition to renewal of the automated external defibrillators, the CSC plans to present guidelines, including an analysis grid for the number and location of AEDs, at the next NHSPC meeting.
In a Nutshell
• The employer presented draft safety guidelines for telework. Aside from some rare situations, this policy has little impact on our members.
• The joint training project on the Canada Labour Code continues to take shape. A report from the subcommittee (which includes a UCCO-SACC-CSN representative) is expected at the next meeting.
• The next NHSPC meeting will be held in June 2023. Between now and then, ad hoc meetings are planned on matters including the PNEP, the footwear hazard assessment and the footwear allowance.