Occupational Health and Safety


Date: 1973-08-08
Instance of approval: Administration Committee

  • Date: 2010-07-14
    Instance of approval: Administration Committee
  • Date: 2016-03-16
    Instance of approval: Administration Committee 2271.4
  • Date: 2019-04-17
    Instance of approval: Administration Committee 2358.5
    • Date: 2021-05-05
      Instance of approval: Administration Committee 2448.2
    Originating/Responsible Department: Human Resources


    1. This Policy must be applied in conjunction with the applicable health and safety legislation and the University’s administrative policies and procedures, in particular with Procedure 14-1 – Internal Responsibility Procedure for Health and Safety Issues, which further explains the responsibilities of individuals at the University and sets out the University’s accountability framework for health and safety matters.

    2. This Policy applies to all members of the University of Ottawa community, including the Board of Governors, employees, volunteers, students and visitors. Contractors hired by the University are also expected to comply with this Policy where warranted.


    3. It is University policy to maintain a safe work and study environment, and to comply with health and safety legislation, regulations and orders. The University promotes and seeks to protect the health, safety and well-being of all its members, and is committed to


    4. The University and all individuals at every level of its organizational structure have a legal responsibility to adhere to health and safety laws. (For more on the roles and responsibilities of the University as an employer, and the roles and responsibilities of supervisors, including senior management, professors and principal investigators, see Procedure 14-1 — Internal Responsibility Procedure for Health and Safety Issues.)

    5. The University has legal obligations that include ensuring employee compliance with health and safety laws, informing employees about the existence of potential or actual workplace hazards and providing training and instruction on preventative procedures. The University must demonstrate that it has taken reasonable precautions to ensure employees can work in a healthy and safe work environment, and that it has taken reasonable steps to ensure that employees are acquainted with the University’s health and safety policies, procedures, practices and guidelines.

    6. All University employees must protect their own health and safety by working in compliance with the relevant legislation and with University safe work practices and procedures. Employees must familiarize themselves with legislated and internal safety requirements, use or wear protective equipment or devices where required and report safety hazards, accidents, incidents or near misses to their supervisors. Employees must follow all initiatives for improving workplace health and safety conditions and have the right to refuse unsafe work.

    7. The University is also responsible for providing all of its students with a safe and healthy work and study environment. While students are not subject to provincial legislation on occupational health and safety, the University abides by the principles of this legislation in the case of students.


    8. Individuals who fail to meet their obligations concerning health and safety will be subject to disciplinary measures, in accordance with the University policies, procedures and/or collective agreements governing their employment.


    9. No individual will be disciplined, penalized, coerced, dismissed, intimidated or suspended for complying with this policy, University procedures or directives, or the applicable occupational health and safety legislation.


    10. This Policy will be reviewed by the University annually and in accordance with the applicable health and safety legislation.


    11. No exception or amendment can be made to this policy without the approval of the President.

    (Human Resources)