In January 2019, the Newfoundland and Labrador government announced changes to Occupational Health and Safety legislation specific to violence and harassment in the workplace. These new rules will come into effect on January 1, 2020.
Currently, worker-on-worker violence is specifically excluded when it comes to violence in the workplace, falling instead under the employer’s general duty to provide a safe workplace. As of January 1, 2020, a business must have processes in place that will allow for an employee to make a complaint of violence that was perpetrated by a colleague, and have that complaint investigated.
Workplace harassment does not currently feature in the legislation, but as of January 1, 2020 employers will need to have a written harassment prevention plan in place, created in conjunction with the OH&S committee/representative/designate.
What’s the difference between violence and harassment?
Violence relates specifically to a physical threat or behaviour.
Harassment relates to inappropriate or offensive attitudes, words or behaviours.
For help creating your harassment prevention plan, including template documents, please contact your CFIB Business Counsellor.