Health and Safety Guidance

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Ontario is moving through the graduated Plan to Safely Reopen Ontario and Manage COVID-19 for the Long-Term. Workplace safety measures and public health measures under the Reopening Ontario (A Flexible Response to COVID-19) Act (ROA) are gradually lifting, in the absence of concerning trends.

Masking: As of March 21, 2022, masking will only be required for public transit and certain health care and congregate care settings. Masking requirements will be lifted for all other settings.

Screening: As of March 21, 2022, screening of workers, patrons or clients is no longer required. This includes both active screening of workers or other individuals prior to entering the workplace (e.g., questionnaires) and passive screening (e.g., signage in your business).

Safety Plans: As of March 21, 2022, employers are no longer required to develop or post written safety plans.

Under the Occupational Health and Safety Act (OHSA) employers have broad responsibilities to ensure workplace safety.
OHSA requirements for all employers include:
· ensuring workers know about hazards by providing information, instruction, and supervision on how to work safely

· ensuring supervisors know what is required to protect workers’ health and safety on the job

· creating workplace health and safety policies

· ensuring workplace parties follow the law and the workplace health and safety policies and procedures

· ensuring workers wear the right protective equipment and are trained on how to use it

· taking all precautions reasonable in the circumstances to protect workers from hazards including the risks of being hurt or getting a work-related illness

Employers should determine what kind of information is appropriate with respect to COVID-19 controls. This may include provision of information about respiratory infections in general, signs and symptoms of COVID-19 and polices about what to do if a worker is sick, including “stay home if sick policies”.

There may be circumstances which arise where additional measures are required. For instance, if there was an outbreak at the workplace or a cluster of cases which shows that COVID-19 may be spreading among the workers, an employer may need to take additional measures to protect workers. In these circumstances, the precautions that are reasonable in the circumstances may include the additional layering of controls that were previously in place, such as re-introducing active screening, ensuring workers are physically distanced or re-introducing masking for workers in all or parts of the workplace.

Employers should continue to assess the workplace, and in consultation with the joint health and safety committee determine what they need to do to protect the health and safety of their workers.
MLTSD inspectors enforce the minimum requirements under the OHSA, and the regulations made under the Act. While the OHSA addresses the minimum requirements, an employer may choose to maintain COVID-19 precautions that exceed these minimum requirements. For example, an employer may choose to maintain masking requirements in certain situations or a modified version of their COVID-19 Safety Plan for the workplace.

Women in Construction Group Bursary

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Are you a female pursuing a career in the skilled trades?

The Barrie Women in Construction group is excited to be offering our annual bursary to female students entering into Post Secondary or continuing education
and Apprenticeships in the 2022/2023 year, with a focus on skilled trades.

Those interested in applying can send an email to

Please include a short essay about yourself, what career path you have chosen and why, and why you feel women in trades are important.
Please also include the best way to contact you

Selected recipients will be notified in May 2022
*Open to Residents of Simcoe County*

Download the flyer

The Barrie Women in Construction group is excited to be offering our annual bursary to female students entering into post-Secondary or continuing education in the 2022/2023 year, with a focus on skilled trades.

Last year we raised $3,000 for women entering the trades and were able to provide the bursary to three individuals!
We are currently seeking sponsors for this year’s bursary.

Any sponsorship amount is appreciated, but typically our sponsors contribute between $100 and $500. Your sponsorship includes your company name and logo on all our advertising and social media pages.

For more information, please contact us at, or reach out to one of our contacts below.
On behalf of all the Barrie Women in Construction members, we thank you for considering this opportunity!

Nicole McArthur, Co-Chair 3M Construction Markets

Alison Smith, Executive Director
Barrie Construction Association

Julie Harris, Co-Chair
Tamarco Contracting Ltd.

Bryony Buchanan, Membership Coordinator Barrie Construction Association

Download the sponsorship flyer


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With businesses once again facing COVID-19 restrictions as mandated by the Government of Ontario, the Invest Barrie team wanted to reach out and ensure you’re aware of the resources and supports available.

We understand this latest round of restrictions is frustrating in an already challenging time. Invest Barrie and our Small Business Centre are available to help guide you through support program options and can be contacted by email at or by phone at 705 720 2445.

Below is a list of resources available to help businesses impacted by the current restrictions. A complete list of resources is available at This page is updated as new information and supports become available.

Program & Status

Local Lockdown Program
Applications Open

Hardest-Hit Business Recovery Program
Applications Open

Small Business Relief Grant
Announced 7th Jan 2022, Application date yet to be announced.

Canada Worker Lockdown Benefit
Applications Open

Ontario Business Costs Rebate Program
Application Opening on 18th Jan 2022

Improving Cash Flow for Ontario Businesses
Six-month interest- and penalty-free period to make payments for most provincially administered taxes (Jan 1st, 2022 – July 1st, 2022)

Electricity Rate Relief
Starting at 12:01 am on Tuesday, January 18, 2022, electricity prices will be set 24 hours a day at the current off-peak rate of 8.2 cents per kilowatt-hour


Ontario Launching New Agency to Better Serve Tradespeople

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Skilled Trades Ontario will address labour shortage by improving training and simplifying services

TORONTO — The Ontario government has launched Skilled Trades Ontario, a new Crown agency, to improve trades training and simplify services. The new agency will promote and market the trades, develop the latest training and curriculum standards, and provide a streamlined user-friendly experience for tradespeople. These changes will result in more workers for in-demand jobs and prepare Ontario for a strong economic comeback.

“We’re redrawing the system to address Ontario’s labour shortage and make the trades a career of choice for more people,” said Monte McNaughton, Minister of Labour, Training and Skills Development. “The skilled trades provide well-paying and rewarding careers that are vital for our economy. By creating this new agency, we are working for workers and delivering the generational change that labour leaders and employers have been calling for.”

The new online services will help apprentices conveniently manage their careers in one place with an online one-stop-shop for scheduling classes and exams, submitting forms, paying fees and more. These changes will reduce the skilled labour shortage the province currently faces – estimated at 350,000 by 2025 – by making it easier for more people to learn about and enter the trades, including reducing processing and registration times for applicants from 60 days to 12.

Read full news release

Skills Ontario launches new app for students to explore trades

TORONTO—Ontario college applicants can now learn about more than 150 skilled trade and technology specialties with the new Skills Ontario career exploration app for Apple and Android devices.

The fully bilingual app, launched recently, is a toolbox for students of all ages to explore skilled trade and technology pathways.

Through an aptitude quiz, quick links to partnered organizations, a calendar of events and frequent scholarship and employment opportunity updates, users can see which career paths could be the right fit for them and learn more about how to succeed in these fields through the app, indicates a Skills Ontario release.

The app can be found by typing “Skills Ontario” in an app store.
Users will receive continuous updates with new resources, event details and scholarship and employment opportunities.

“We are thrilled to announce that our app is live,” said Ian Howcroft, CEO of Skills Ontario, in a statement. “Inspiring the next generation of skilled trade and technology leaders is crucial to our success as a province, and we are looking forward to providing this unique learning opportunity to Ontarians. Skilled trades and technologies play an imperative role in our lives and continuing to promote these fields and support the professionals working within them benefits us all.

Ontario’s New Excess Soil Regulation

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Recently BCA members and Municipal Buyers attended a seminar with Rob Kennaley (Kennaley Construction Law) and Chris Pare (Dragun Environmental Advisers) who provided an overview of the legislation along with practical strategies for owners, contractors, subcontractors and disposal site operators. Thanks to Rob Kennaley the recording of the webinar and PowerPoint presentation can be found below.

Topics included:

·         understanding the changes

·         a new regime with a new purpose

·         the broad definition of “excess soil” and how it must be dealt with

·         the intensive record keeping and reporting requirements

·         the ‘beneficial purpose’ test and options for assessment, treatment and re-use

·         the critical importance of the ‘Project Leader’ – who will assume that role?

·         when can I pass my obligations on to another through contract?

·         the numerous exemptions – when might the Regulation not apply?

·         available resources to help you get ready.

Powerpoint Presentation

Webinar Recording


The Supreme Court of Canada’s new “plausible inference” test: When is a construction deficiency discovered for the purposes of a limitation period?

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In July of this year the Supreme Court of Canada, in Grant Thornton LLP v. New Brunswick, 2021 SCC 31, introduced a new test for the commencement of limitations periods in Canada.  It held that the clock starts ticking on a limitation period when a “plausible inference” of liability arises on facts that are, or ought to be, known through the exercise of reasonable diligence.  The Court also addressed the extent to which a party might need an expert’s report before such an inference arises.

The decision may have significant consequences for the construction industry.  This, because the “discoverability” of construction defects has always been difficult to assess.  Consider, for example, cracks which appear in a newly poured foundation.  These might be attributable to shrinkage, not a deficiency.  They might also not be worth suing over.  Has the owner, upon noticing the cracks, “discovered” a claim against the contractor, concrete supplier, geotechnical engineer, structural engineer and architect simply because a “plausible inference” can be drawn that the cracks might be attributable to something any one of them might be responsible for?  Can the owner take a ‘wait-and-see’ approach, or must it investigate the cause of the cracking in an effort to figure out what is going on (and who might be responsible)?

Continue reading


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City complying with provincial regulations to require proof of COVID-19 vaccination at recreation/culture facilities

(Barrie, ON) On September 1, 2021, the Government of Ontario announced that proof of COVID-19 vaccination would be required in select settings as of September 22, 2021. On September 14, the Government of Ontario released regulations and guidance for requiring proof of vaccination to enter certain facilities. In accordance with the law, the City of Barrie will require proof of vaccination to access select indoor services and programs taking place at community centres, arenas, pools and entertainment/cultural venues. Exemptions will be made as permitted by the Government of Ontario’s regulations.

The following will be required at point of entry:
• Ontario Ministry of Health COVID-19 vaccination certificate or other Government issued vaccination record.
• Acceptable identification which includes name & birthdate – photo ID is not required.
o Examples include birth certificate, citizenship card, driver’s license or other government issued ID.

As per provincial regulations, anyone who refuses to share the required information will not be permitted to enter the City recreation/culture centres. Limited exceptions apply.

Read the full press release


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September 17, 2021

Ontario Government Extends Temporary Layoff Exemption to January 1, 2022

On May 29, 2020, the Government of Ontario introduced a regulation under the Employment Standards Act, 2000 (“ESA”) that provided relief to any employer that had temporarily laid off or reduced the wages and/or hours of a non-union employee due to COVID-19. The regulation largely exempts any such layoff or reduction from being deemed a termination of employment, such that there is no obligation to provide ESA notice or severance pay. The employee is deemed to be on an Infectious Disease Emergency Leave (“IDEL”).

Read the Briefing Note from Sherrard Kuzz, LLP


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The opioid overdose crisis is disproportionately affecting people working in the trades and construction. Other substances such as alcohol and cannabis are also of concern. To support employers and workers in these sectors, the Canadian Centre on Substance Use and Addiction has partnered with Health Canada to produce a toolkit of resources. It’s called Substance Use and the Workplace: Supporting Employers and Employees in the Trades.

This collection of resources is aimed at helping employers address employee substance use, particularly among young men working in the trades. Employers can find ready-to-use resources from more than 30 organizations to learn how to reduce risks related to substances and substance use disorder, and to support workplace health and safety. The toolkit includes resources to help:

• Educate employees about substances and their effects,
• Prevent substance use harms,
• Address employee substance use,
• Find services and supports, and
• Access related information from key reports and organizations.

Included among the resources are four new CCSA posters. Designed to be printed and shared, they provide accessible information on the opioid overdose crisis and ways to address it:

What Are Opioids?
Canada’s Opioid Crisis: What You Should Know
Canada’s Opioid Crisis: How You Can Help
Opioids and Pain Management

We encourage you to share this toolkit of resources across your networks, especially with employers in construction, trades and transport. Together, we can help prevent more deaths and harms from the opioid crisis and substance use in the workplace.

For more information on workplace safety and substance use, please visit CCSA’s Workplace Safety web page.

Covid 19 Vaccination Policies and Resources

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BCA Member, CCPartners recently held a webinar on Covid-19 vaccination policies in the workplace.  You can access the webinar on Youtube by following the link below.  There is also a Q and A session video that immediately followed the webinar.  The link to access that is also included below:

Episode 25:

Episode 25 Q&A:

Are you looking for resources to create Covid-19 educational material for your employees?  The information contained in the link was curated from the Ministry of Education website that was created for the child care sector.  The educational information on Covid-19 applies to all sectors, not just the child care sector.

Educational Resources