Top TEN Contraventions in the Community Service and Hospitality Industries

Service Hospitality’s mission is to build our members’ capacity to prevent workplace injuries by ensuring they identify hazards in their workplace and comply with relevant health and safety legislation, protecting them from legal action. Below are the TOP TEN contraventions in our industries during 2023 in Saskatchewan. 

1. Establishing of OH&S Committees – Saskatchewan Employment Act 3-22

Every place of employment where ten or more workers of one employer work is required to have an OH&S Committee. This committee must have at least two members, represent both the employer and employees, and meet no less than once every three months.

WHY? This committee is an integral part of your Safety Management System, helping you monitor, hear, and respond to the health and safety of employees and the workplace.

Resources: Spotlight on Safety Committees ServiceHospitalityTV episode

Training: Your Safety Committee & the Law

2. Duty of employer to provide information – OHS Regulation 3-4

An employer must make readily available for workers’ reference a copy of the Saskatchewan Employment Act and the Occupational Health & Safety Regulations. To fulfill this requirement, ensure you have a physical copy of both publications in an area where staff congregate, such as a staff room. Or, have a PDF copy on the desktop of a staff-accessible computer. If you have a copy, but it’s locked away at a manager’s desk somewhere, you’re at risk for this contravention.

WHY? The Right to Know and the Right to Participate comes from access to information.

Resources: PDF of The Saskatchewan Employment Act and The Occupational Health and Safety Regulations

Training: Health and Safety Leadership

3. Fire Safety Plans – OHS Regulation 25-2

Employers are responsible for ensuring they have taken all reasonably practicable steps to prevent the outbreak of a fire and to provide effective means to protect workers from any fire that may occur. This must be documented in a written fire safety plan that provides for the safety of all workers in the event of a fire.

WHY? It is too late to develop a plan to save lives and property when a fire breaks out.

Resources: Emergency Plan template, Emergency Response Drill template

Training: Emergency Response Planning

4. Supervision of Work – OHS Regulation 3-6

Employers shall ensure that ALL work at the place of employment is sufficiently and competently supervised. Supervisors should have sufficient knowledge of their legal responsibilities regarding organizational health and safety.

WHY? In almost all workplace incidents involving workers, the supervisor is contravened and sometimes charged with “insufficient supervision.” Supervisors are liable for the work of the workers they oversee and for implementing and upholding the employer’s policies and procedures.

Training: Health and Safety Leadership

5. First Aid Register – OHS Regulation 5-8

Most workplaces have first aid kits, but did you know your first aid kit must also contain a first aid register (or logbook)? This register must be updated each time a supply item is removed from the kit with a description detailing the first aid treatment administered to a worker. The OH&S committee should inspect this register at regular intervals.

WHY? By studying this register, you gain insight into minor and near-miss incidents, which are a ‘warning bell’ of a bigger incident if control measures are not implemented.

ResourcesFirst Aid Register template

6. Eye Flushing Equipment – OHS Regulation 21-12

If a worker’s eyes are at risk from corrosive or other harmful substances (cleaning chemicals or hot fryer oil, for example), the employer must provide appropriate eye-flushing equipment. Ensure that any eye-flushing solution is not expired and that all stations are properly equipped!

Resources: Inspection checklist template

Training:  Workplace Inspections

7. Frequency of Meetings – OHS Regulation 4-4

The OH&S Committee is required to hold its first meeting within two weeks of being established. Three subsequent meetings must be held at intervals not exceeding one month. After that, regular meetings must be held at intervals not exceeding three months.

WHY? This committee helps to review safety policies and procedures and plays a crucial role in workplace inspections and incident investigations. It cannot function effectively without regular meetings.

Resources: OHS Committee Terms of Reference Template

Training: Your Safety Committee & the Law

8. Harassment Policy – OHS Regulation 3-25

On the top 10 list since 2016, Harassment contraventions continue to plague service and hospitality industries. The employer’s responsibility to ensure the safety of the entire workplace includes a workplace free from harassment.  All workplaces must implement a harassment policy and post a copy of the policy in a conspicuous (easily accessible and noticeable) place that is readily available for reference by workers.

WHY? Policies alone do not prevent harassment, but they do lay the foundation for accountability, awareness and training and give all employees the capability to recognize and take action.

Resources: Harassment Policy template, Harassment Complaint Form Template

Training: Creating Harassment-Free Workplaces in Community Service and Hospitality

9. General duties of employers – OHS Regulation 3-1

All employers must meet the minimum requirements for health and safety standards as required by law. The duties of the employer include ensuring that the systems of work and working environments protect the health, safety, and welfare of all workers.

WHY? The employer is accountable for making sure information, instruction, training, and supervision of the safety management system is in place.

Training: Health and Safety Leadership

And, tied for the 10th spot…

10. Worker Education and Training – OHS Regulation 22-4

All Canadian jurisdictions require that employers develop, implement, and maintain a worker WHMIS education and training program. All workers who work with a hazardous product or who may be exposed to a hazardous product as part of their work activities must learn about the hazard information for these products.

WHY? A well-organized WHMIS program helps prevent injury, keep workers safe, and ensure environmental protection.

Resources: WHMIS 2015 for the Employer and Employee – Service Hospitality TV Episode

10. Covers for switches, receptacles, and connections – OHS Regulation 30-4

All electrical switches and connections must be covered to protect workers from electrical hazards. The National Electric Code also requires an electrical panel clearance of at least three feet around them.

WHY? Keeping the panel clear of debris and obstructions is crucial to ensuring your electrical system’s and your employees’ safety.

10. Training of OH&S Committee Members – OHS Regulation 4-9

OH&S Committees play an important role in helping the employer ensure the workplace is healthy and safe. To do this effectively, OH&S Committee members (co-chairs at a minimum) are required to receive training on the committee’s duties and functions.

WHY? This committee would not be effective without understanding OH&S legislation, their roles and responsibilities, how to perform proactive inspections, or how to identify true causes of incidents and implement effective controls

Training: Your Safety Committee & the Law


For assistance, or if you have questions or comments, please Get in Touch with Service Hospitality.

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