On June 17, 2008 the Honorable Jean-Pierre Blackburn, Minister of Labor and Minister of the Economic Development Agency of Canada for the Regions of Quebec, announced new regulations to prevent violence in federally-regulated workplaces.

"The Government of Canada believes that workers have every right to expect a workplace that is healthy, safe and free of the risk of violence," said Minister Blackburn. "These new regulations will help to keep Canada's labor force safe, healthy and competitive. Canada is taking another step in its efforts to build the model workplace."

Under the new regulations, employers must develop a policy to prevent workplace violence, including bullying, teasing, or abusive behavior, and provide training for all workers who are exposed to or who are at risk of workplace violence. They are also required to assess and evaluate the risk and potential for workplace violence, and put controls in place to prevent workplace hazards and to investigate acts of violence. As well, employers are required to assess the effectiveness of their policy and measures at least every 3 years and update them as necessary.

"These violence regulations represent the most comprehensive of their type in any jurisdiction across Canada, added Hussan Yussuff, Secretary-Treasury of the Canadian Labor Congress. The Minister and the Labor Program should be complimented on the energy and effort that was put into bringing these regulations to fruition."

At the recent meeting of federal, provincial and territorial ministers responsible for labor held in Quebec City in January 2008, all labor ministers pledged to work together on the issue of violence prevention in the workplace as an integral part of achieving healthy and safe workplaces across Canada.

These regulations affect sectors under federal labor jurisdiction such as banking, interprovincial and international transportation, broadcasting, federal Crown corporations and the federal public service. (Source: Government of Canada)