AB Labour Urged to Focus on Education over Punitive Fines

Three out of four Alberta businesses are worried they may be unfairly penalized 

CALGARY – Small business owners are seeking clarity from the Ministry of Labour as new occupational health and safety rules come into effect today.  According to a recent survey of Alberta business owners, three-quarters (77 per cent) say they are worried they may be unfairly penalized by health and safety authorities. 

“As the Alberta government is still developing and releasing workplace safety tools, the responsible thing for the Minister of Labour to do is to allow a grace period for small business owners to adapt,” said Amber Ruddy, Alberta Director of CFIB.  “Will the Alberta government commit to focus on education before resorting to punitive ticketing?” 

When asked, what measures are you currently taking to improve occupational health and safety in your workplace?

·         63 per cent provide in-house workplace safety programs and instruction to employees

·         45 per cent are purchasing and installing safer equipment

·         43 per cent are implementing employee ideas into safety policies

·         36 per cent use external courses for health and safety training 

“Businesses owners want to comply, but the intricate details of their new obligations are catching small firms off guard,” said Ruddy. 

The May 2018 survey findings are based on 837 CFIB member responses to a controlled-access web survey. 

Read the CFIB column appearing today in Business in Calgary and Business in Edmonton magazines: Small businesses brace for more changes to employment rules 

About CFIB

CFIB is Canada’s largest association of small and medium-sized businesses with 110,000 members across every sector and region. Learn more at cfib.ca.