Bill 14 – Workers’
Amendment Act, 2011
WorkSafeBC is going to centralize
mental disorders claims to a special unit based in Richmond. The
team will have six claims managers, two nurse advisors, two psychologists
and other necessary support. There will be nine vocational rehabilitation
consultants throughout the province to assist with returning to work.
They expect the volume of claims to be
1800 to 2000 per year. The team will be using a multi-disciplinary case
management team approach to start. The first year will also be spent
developing practice guidelines for future case management.
Claims will initially go to the
teleclaim process but only the regular questions will be asked. If the
claim is a mental disorders claim, the more detailed questions will come
from one of the designated claims managers.
Education is the fifth highest sector
or industry in registering psychological-only claims.
Policy Changes Expected
BCPSEA responded to the first policy
related to the changes needed to enact the claims process that will start
on July 1, 2012. There was a two-week
resolution dated June 20, 2012, the Board of Directors of WorkSafeBC
approved deletion of Item C3-13.00, Mental Stress, of the Rehabilitation
Services & Claims Manual, Volume II,
and replacement with new Item C3-13.00, Section 5.1 - Mental Disorders,
to reflect the Bill
14 amendments to the Workers Compensation Act as they relate
to compensation for mental disorders. The
legislative amendments will come into effect on July 1, 2012.
Item C3-13.00, Section 5.1 - Mental Disorders, applies to every
decision made by WorkSafeBC or the Workers Compensation Appeal Tribunal
after July 1, 2012, in respect of a claim made but not finally
adjudicated before July 1, 2012.
feedback received by the Board of Directors informed their
decision-making on the new policy.
and policy amendments are effective July 1, 2012.
Action Regarding Bullying and Harassment
is currently working with employer and worker representatives to develop
a “tool box” for employer programs on bullying and harassment.
districts across BC already have policy regarding harassment. When two
employees are involved, the collective agreement process must be
followed. It includes provisions for investigation and disclosure of
information. A site-based committee is not entitled to a harassment
need to review their procedures especially where they relate to the
public, parents, and students re harassment and bullying. Policy
and practice related to respect of others should be emphasized.
WorkSafeBC is working on a policy on bullying and harassment. There will be
stakeholder consultation, which will occur during July and August with
the close of consultation expected in September.
policy will include a definition of bullying and harassment. There may
be conflicts between the current collective agreement provisions and
the new factors with WorkSafeBC.
will develop a prevention toolkit. They are looking at practice in
other jurisdictions with similar language including Ontario, Australia,
has provided WorkSafeBC with information on our current
train-the-trainer model for harassment awareness and the Awareness
and Prevention of Harassment online option available for school districts.
WorkSafeBC officer could be called in to review how the employer is
dealing with harassment and bullying because of an employee report.
are strongly encouraged to participate in the consultation. If you send
in feedback, BCPSEA would appreciate receiving a copy. We will be
submitting feedback once the policy is public.
on Registration Requirements for Property Management Firms and Building
The Assessment Department
has proposed removing specific policy direction in the Assessment
Manual regarding the registration of property management firms and
building owners, as the direction is both misleading and
redundant. If this section of policy is removed, the general principles outlined
elsewhere in the Assessment Manual would be used to determine when
property management firms and building owners should register.
The Policy and Regulation
Division has prepared a discussion paper for stakeholder review and
comment on whether this policy should be removed.
Stakeholders are invited
to review the discussion paper and proposed policies and to provide
feedback by September 21, 2012.
The discussion paper,
proposed policies and information on providing feedback can be accessed
by clicking the following link: Review
WorkSafeBC Consultation on New Policy — Employer’s
Obligations Towards Other Workers – Section 115(1)(a)(ii)
their May 2012 meeting, the WorkSafeBC
Board of Directors approved the release for consultation of a discussion paper and proposed
new policy regarding an employer’s duty towards other workers.
The new policy is in bold text and
highlighted in yellow.
on the discussion paper, options and draft policy must be received by 4:30
pm Friday, September 14, 2012.
districts have employees from other companies working on school district
sites. This can be in the maintenance area, child care, youth and
family counsellors, to name a few. This new policy, if adopted, will
clarify the obligation when there are workers who are not employees of
districts on site.
As permanent awards are no
longer paid for life, the determination of retirement date has become
increasingly problematic. WorkSafeBC noted significant discord among WCAT
decisions and inconsistencies in application of decisions, particularly
for young workers. Over the past six years, the number of workers over 65
receiving monthly permanent award payments has increased from 131 to 452.
Changes to government benefit schemes (CPP / OAS) are anticipated to
encourage more people to work past age 65.
amendments will seek to provide direction as to when a worker is
considered to be “retired,” when the retirement decision is to be made,
and what evidence should be considered to determine when a worker would
“OH&S Providers” Online Directory
announced a new online directory for individuals to make contact with
OH&S training providers in BC. Changes to the approval process for
the Board are expected but not public yet.