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Employers' Obligations

In workplaces, that have been identified as having an increased risk of violence, employers must have and implement a violence prevention policy. Employers are also obligated to take certain precautions if their employees are working in potentially risky environments.

Violence Prevention Policies

A violence prevention policy must include…

  • a statement that the employer is committed to minimizing or eliminating the risk of violence in the workplace
  • a list of worksites where violent situations have occurred or could be expected to occur
  • a list of staff positions that have been, or could be reasonably expected to be, exposed to violent situations
  • the procedure the employer will follow to inform workers about the risk of violence, including information about persons they are likely to encounter who have a history of violent behaviour
  • the actions the employer will take to minimize or eliminate the risk of violence
  • information about the process workers can use to report violent incidents to the employer, and how it will be documented and investigated
  • a recommendation that workers exposed to a violent incident seek medical treatment or counselling
  • a commitment that the employer will provide training for workers about recognizing potentially violent situations, implement practice and procedures to minimize or reduce the risk to workers, and explain how to respond and report violent incidents

In developing and implementing a violence prevention policy employers must consult with the Occupational Health and Safety Committee, the Occupational Health and Safety Representative or the workers directly, when there is no committee or representative.

Violence prevention policies must be readily accessible to workers. The policy must be reviewed at least every three years and revised where necessary, including if there is a change in circumstances that could affect the health and safety of workers.

Late Night Retail

Retail premises that are open to the public between 11 p.m. and 6 a.m. are subject to additional safeguards to help ensure the health and safety of workers. These safeguards include:

  • safe cash handling procedures
  • video cameras
  • signs for the public indicating that access to cash is limited and the premises are under video surveillance
  • check-in system for workers that are alone in these workplaces
  • personal emergency transmitter that can signal for emergency response when activated for workers who are alone in these workplaces

Isolated Workplaces & Working Alone

Employers must identify risks that are associated with working alone or in isolated workplaces and take steps to eliminate or reduce those risks, including having an effective communication system in place. Employers may also want to consider things like establishing a means of regular contact with the workers, prohibiting certain activities, providing additional training and implementing safe work practices and procedures for the situation.

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The Shift Project is funded by the Department of Justice and delivered by the Public Legal Education Association of Saskatchewan (PLEA).