Human Resources Policies
Working Alone Safely
Policy for Working Alone Safely

Category: Health and Safety
Sub-Category: General

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Policy Statement

The City of Toronto will provide a safe work environment for its employees. In doing so, the City will take all reasonable and practical measures to eliminate or minimize injury or incident risks associated with the nature of the work performed when employees work alone. The intent of this policy is to protect workers from probable risk of injury from health and safety hazards because of working alone. Potential violence hazards that exist for employees who work alone are addressed in the Workplace Violence policy and are therefore not intended to be addressed by this policy.

Application

This policy applies to all City of Toronto employees.

Definition

Working Alone:
to work alone at any time in the shift where assistance is not readily available from a co-worker or expected from a member of the public when needed in the normal course of duties or in the event of an injury, illness or emergency

Responsibilities

Management Staff of Divisions will:

  • Communicate this policy and its procedures to employees who work alone
  • Conduct a hazard assessment to identify existing or potential hazards related to the nature of the work or the work environment given the circumstances of the work when working alone
  • Take all reasonable and practical steps to minimize or eliminate identified injury or incident risks
  • In cases where hazards are identified, establish an effective means of communication between the employee and persons capable of responding to the employee’s needs
  • Consult with joint health and safety committees/health and safety representatives in conducting hazard assessments, investigating incidents and developing practical steps to minimize or eliminate identified risks
  • Conduct further hazard assessments at intervals of time appropriate to the changing conditions and circumstances of the worker’s job (e.g., changes in work organization, physical environment or equipment and tools)
  • Annually review the effectiveness of the hazard controls and procedures and make improvements as required

Human Resources Health and Safety Consultants will:

  • Assist management staff to implement this policy and develop divisional procedures
  • Regularly review this policy and recommend revisions, if needed

Joint Health and Safety Committees/Health and Safety Representatives will:

  • Review hazard assessment results and provide recommendations to management to reduce and minimize the injury or incident risks
  • Participate in critical injury investigations, review injury/accident and incident reports, and recommend corrective measures
  • Respond to employee concerns related to working alone and communicate these to management

All employees will:

  • Maintain a safe work environment and take every reasonable precaution when working alone.

Occupational Health and Safety Coordinating Committee will:

  • Review regularly the effectiveness of the policy and guidelines and make changes as required by consulting with management staff and employee representatives

Authorities

Occupational Health and Safety Act of Ontario (R.S.O. 1990, c. 0.1)
City of Toronto Corporate Occupational Health and Safety Policy (1999)


Endorsed by

Occupational Health and Safety Coordinating Committee (OHSCC), October 30, 2001

Approved by

Executive Management Team, February 18, 2002

Date Approved

February 18, 2002

Reviewed & Revised by OHSCC

February 28, 2012


Related links - external

Corporate Occupational Health and Safety Policy
Occupational Health and Safety Act

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