March 20, 2023
The Ontario government is introducing changes to continue leading the country in providing ground-breaking protections for workers. These proposed changes expand on the ground-breaking actions in the Working for Workers Acts, 2021 and 2022, which are already helping millions of people in Ontario.
Today, the government intends to introduce the Working for Workers Act, 2023, that would, if passed:
The government is also proposing to remove barriers for women in the construction sector by introducing new regulatory amendments that will make the skilled trades more accessible to women by ensuring they have access to at least one women’s-only washroom on jobsites and properly fitting equipment such as uniforms, boots and safety harnesses.
In addition, the Ontario government is making it easier for firefighters, fire investigators and their families to get access to Workplace Safety and Insurance Board (WSIB) compensation by proposing to expand presumptive cancer coverage for firefighters to include thyroid and pancreatic cancers.
The government is also preparing students to enter the skilled trades faster by allowing students in Grade 11 to transition to a full-time skilled trades apprenticeship program. After receiving their certificate of Apprenticeship, these young workers can apply for their Ontario Secondary School Diploma as mature students.
The government will consult with employers, unions, education stakeholders, trainers, parents, and others on ways to make it easier for young people to enter the skilled trades. This includes the potential of lowering entry requirements for some skilled trades that currently require a Grade 12-level education.
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