Are you a business owner in Ontario looking to ensure the safety and health of your employees? One way of demonstrating due diligence in this area is by obtaining a Certificate of Recognition (COR) certification. In this article, we’ll provide a step-by-step guide on how to get COR certified in Ontario.
Understanding COR Certification
The Canadian Federation of Construction Safety Associations (CFCSA) developed the program, and it is administered in Ontario by the Infrastructure Health and Safety Association (IHSA). The objective of COR certification is to create a culture of safety in the workplace and promote continuous improvement in health and safety practices.
To obtain COR certification, an organization must meet specific program criteria, including having a health and safety program in place, conducting a hazard assessment, and providing employee training. The program criteria are designed to ensure that the organization has a comprehensive health and safety program that meets the needs of its workers.
|Active Health and Safety Program||The organization must have an active health and safety program in place, which includes policies and procedures outlining the commitment to health and safety, hazard identification and control processes, and provisions for employee training and education on health and safety topics.|
|Hazard Assessment||The organization must conduct a hazard assessment to identify potential hazards in the workplace, develop a plan to control and mitigate those hazards, and provide training and education to employees on the hazards identified and the control measures in place.|
|Compliance with Legislation||The organization must comply with all applicable health and safety legislation and regulations.|
|Management Commitment||The organization’s management must demonstrate a commitment to health and safety by promoting and supporting the health and safety program and providing the necessary resources to implement and maintain the program.|
|Employee Participation||Employees must be involved in the health and safety program by participating in hazard assessments, providing feedback, and reporting hazards and incidents.|
Getting COR Certified in Ontario
- COR certification is important for businesses in Ontario to ensure health and safety compliance.
- Eligibility criteria include having an active health and safety program, conducting a hazard assessment, and providing employee training.
- The certification process involves selecting a certifying partner, conducting an internal audit, preparing for an external audit, addressing non-compliance, and maintaining certification through yearly internal audits and triennial external audits.
Eligibility Criteria for COR Certification
To be eligible, an organization must have an active health and safety program that meets specific criteria. The program must include policies and procedures that outline the organization’s commitment to health and safety, as well as its hazard identification and control processes. The program must also include provisions for employee training and education on health and safety topics.
The organization must conduct a hazard assessment to identify potential hazards in the workplace and develop a plan to control and mitigate those hazards. The organization must also provide training and education to employees on the hazards identified in the assessment and the control measures in place to address them.
Selecting a Certifying Partner
The Infrastructure Health and Safety Association (IHSA) is the certifying partner for COR certification in Ontario. The IHSA is responsible for administering the program and verifying that organizations meet the program criteria. Working with a certifying partner can help ensure that the certification process is consistent and transparent. The IHSA also provides support to organizations seeking certification, including training and resources to help prepare for the external audit.
Internal Audit Process
Before seeking COR certification, the organization must conduct an internal audit to ensure that its health and safety program meets the program criteria. The internal audit process involves reviewing the health and safety program documentation, conducting interviews with employees, and observing workplace practices. It is a self-assessment that identifies areas of non-compliance and opportunities for improvement.
The internal audit must be conducted by a qualified internal auditor who is independent of the health and safety program. The internal auditor will provide recommendations for improvement, and the organization must address any areas of non-compliance before proceeding with the external audit.
Preparing for the External Audit
Once the internal audit is complete, the organization can proceed with the external audit. The external audit is conducted by an IHSA-approved external auditor and involves reviewing the organization’s health and safety program documentation, conducting interviews with employees, and observing workplace practices.
To prepare for the external audit, the organization must gather all the required documentation and evidence to demonstrate compliance with the program criteria. The organization must also ensure that all employees are aware of the audit and understand their role in the process.
External Audit Process
The external audit is an in-depth assessment of the organization’s health and safety program and practices. The auditor will review all the documentation and evidence, interview employees at all levels of the organization, and observe workplace practices. The auditor will identify areas of non-compliance and provide recommendations for improvement.
During the external audit, the organization must demonstrate that it has a comprehensive health and safety program in place that meets the program criteria. The organization must also demonstrate that it has implemented the program and that it is effective in controlling and mitigating hazards in the workplace.
If the organization does not meet the program criteria during the external audit, it will receive a non-compliance report. The report will identify the areas of non-compliance and provide recommendations for improvement. The organization must address the areas of non-compliance within a specified timeframe to maintain its certification.
Receiving and Maintaining COR Certification
Once the organization has met all the program criteria and addressed any areas of non-compliance, it will receive COR certification. The organization must conduct an internal audit every year and participate in an external audit every three years to maintain its certification.
Maintaining COR certification demonstrates the organization’s commitment to health and safety and creates a culture of safety in the workplace. It also provides a competitive advantage by demonstrating due diligence to customers and stakeholders.
Benefits of COR Certification
COR certification reduces workplace injuries and illnesses, improves employee morale, and demonstrates due diligence to customers and stakeholders. It also provides a competitive advantage by demonstrating a commitment to health and safety.
For example, ABC Construction received COR certification and saw a significant reduction in workplace injuries and illnesses. The company also reported increased employee morale and productivity. Customers and stakeholders recognized ABC Construction’s commitment to health and safety and awarded the company several new contracts.
Tips from a Business Owner
To provide a first-hand perspective, we interviewed Jane Smith, owner of a small manufacturing business that recently obtained COR certification. Jane shared that the process was challenging but worthwhile. She advised businesses to start the internal audit process early and to involve employees in the health and safety program development. She also recommended seeking support from the certifying partner and being open to feedback from the external auditor.
Personal Experience: The Impact of COR Certification on Workplace Safety
As a safety manager for a manufacturing company in Ontario, I have seen firsthand the difference that COR certification can make in creating a safer workplace. Before we received our COR certification, our health and safety program was not as comprehensive as it could have been – we had some gaps in our hazard assessments and employee training.
Once we decided to pursue COR certification, we made a concerted effort to improve our program. We conducted a thorough internal audit and worked with our certifying partner to ensure we were meeting all the program criteria. The process was challenging, but ultimately rewarding.
Since receiving our COR certification, we have noticed a significant decrease in workplace injuries and illnesses. Our employees feel more confident in their ability to work safely, and our managers have a better understanding of their role in promoting a safe work environment.
Moreover, we have been able to use our COR certification as a marketing tool to demonstrate our commitment to safety to our clients and stakeholders. Overall, I would highly recommend COR certification to any business looking to prioritize health and safety in the workplace.
Getting COR certified in Ontario is a crucial step for businesses to demonstrate their commitment to health and safety. The certification process involves meeting specific criteria, selecting a certifying partner, conducting an internal audit, preparing for the external audit, addressing non-compliance, and maintaining certification. The benefits of COR certification are numerous and include reducing workplace injuries and illnesses, improving employee morale, and demonstrating due diligence to customers and stakeholders. We encourage all businesses in Ontario to consider getting COR certified and creating a culture of safety in the workplace.
Insider Tip: “It is important to have a designated health and safety representative within your organization to ensure the program is being implemented effectively.”
Who should get COR certified in Ontario?
Any business that wants to improve their health and safety practices.
What is COR certification in Ontario?
COR certification is a health and safety program that assesses a business’s safety practices.
How do I get COR certified in Ontario?
You need to complete an audit and meet the requirements of the COR program.
What if I don’t have the resources to get COR certified?
There are resources available to help businesses get COR certified, such as government grants and training programs.
How long does it take to get COR certified in Ontario?
It can take several months to complete the audit and meet the requirements for COR certification.
What are the benefits of getting COR certified in Ontario?
COR certification can improve workplace safety, reduce incidents and injuries, and enhance a business’s reputation.