Canadian Centre for Occupational Health and Safety
Symbol of the Government of Canada

>Performance Report

Performance Report for the period ending March 31, 2009

The Honourable Rona Ambrose, P.C., M.P.

Minister of Labour

CCOHS Logo

 

Table of Contents

 

The Message
Section I: Departmental Overview
1.1 Summary Information
Raison d'Ítre
Responsibilities
Strategic Outcomes
Program Activity Architecture
1.2 Performance Summary
2008-09 Financial Resources ($ thousands)
2008-09 Human Resources (FTEs)
Contribution of Priorities to Strategic Outcomes
Risk Analysis
Expenditure Profile
Voted and Statutory Items
Section II: Section II - Analysis of Program Activities by Strategic Outcome
2.1 Strategic Outcome
2.1.1 Program Activity: Occupational health and safety information development, delivery services and tripartite collaboration
Program Activity Summary
Benefits for Canadians
Performance Analysis
Lessons Learned
Section III: Supplementary Information
3.1 Financial Highlights
3.2 List of Tables
3.3 Other Items of Interest

 

The Message

CCOHS is Canada's national occupational health and safety resource which was created to provide a common focus for and coordination of information in the area of occupational health and safety. CCOHS promotes and facilitates consultation and cooperation among federal, provincial and territorial jurisdictions and participation by labour, management and other stakeholders in the establishment and maintenance of high standards and occupational health and safety initiatives for the Canadian context.

The vision of CCOHS has not changed: to eliminate workplace injuries, illnesses and deaths, and that at the end of every working day, Canadians return home healthy and safe. CCOHS relies on its tripartite Council of Governors for vision, direction and support. CCOHS is governed with representation from labour, business and provincial, territorial and federal governments. This tripartite structure helps to ensure that CCOHS remains an independent and a trusted source of unbiased information for employers, workers and governments.

CCOHS focuses on providing management tools, information, training and education to help create safer workplaces. During the past year, the Centre expanded its outreach to Canadians by developing several communication channels such as Workscape, an online discussion board where people interested in health and safety can share experiences, and exchange ideas and information.

Other services include new publications, public services, software and tools to help Canadians work safely. CCOHS has worked hard to continues to evolve its services and products to meet the ever-changing needs in Canadian workplaces.

It is the fundamental right of all Canadians to a healthy and safe workplace that is the cornerstone to the mandate of CCOHS. By working together, we can provide the guidance, information and resources to improve workplace health and safety.

S. Len Hong
President and CEO

Section I: Departmental Overview - Summary Information
Raison d'Ítre

The Canadian Centre for Occupational Health and Safety was founded by an Act of Parliament in 1978 with a mandate to promote health and safety in the workplace and to enhance the physical and mental health of working people.

Responsibilities

The Canadian Centre for Occupational Health and Safety (CCOHS) operates under the legislative authority of the Canadian Centre for Occupational Health and Safety Act S.C., 1977-78, c. 29 which was passed by unanimous vote in the Canadian Parliament. The purpose of this Act is to promote the fundamental right of Canadians to a healthy and safe working environment by creating a national institute (CCOHS) concerned with the study, encouragement and co-operative advancement of occupational health and safety.

CCOHS is Canada's national occupational health and safety resource which is dedicated to the advancement of occupational health and safety performance by providing necessary services including information and knowledge transfer; training and education; cost-effective tools for improving occupational health and safety performance; management systems services supporting health and safety programs; injury and illness prevention initiatives and promoting the total well-being - physical, psychosocial and mental health - of working people. The Centre was created to provide a common focus for and coordination of information in the area of occupational health and safety.

CCOHS functions as an independent departmental corporation under Schedule II of the Financial Administration Act and is accountable to Parliament through the Minister of Labour. Its funding is derived from a combination of appropriations, cost recoveries and collaboration with the provinces. It is expected that 50% of the budget will be funded through cost recoveries from the creation, production and worldwide sales of fee-for-service and revenue generating occupational health and safety products and services.

CCOHS is a recognized leader in providing effective programs, products and services, which are based on the centre's core knowledge, its collection of occupational health and safety information, and its application of information management technologies.

CCOHS is governed by a tripartite council representing governments (federal, provincial and territorial), employers, and labour. The Council of Governors provides guidance in the creation and delivery of a trustworthy and complete occupational health and safety service. Our key stakeholders are directly involved in the policy, governance and strategic planning for the organization. They also assist with reviews of programs and services to help ensure our information is impartial. Our inquiries service is also supported and funded from contributions provided by federal, provincial and territorial governments.

Strategic Outcomes

In order to pursue its mandate, CCOHS has the following strategic outcome:

Canadians will be provided with unbiased occupational health and safety information and services for the prevention of work-related illnesses and injuries.

Program Activity Architecture

Occupational health and safety information development, delivery services and tripartite collaboration.

The goal of this program is to provide free information on occupational health and safety to support Canadians in their efforts to improve workplace safety and health. Citizens are provided information through a free and impartial personalized service via telephone, e-mail, person-to-person, fax or mail. Alternatively they can independently access a broad range of electronic and print resources developed to support safety and health information needs of Canadians. This may include cost recovery products and services and is supported financially by contributions from various stakeholders.

CCOHS collects, processes, analyzes, evaluates, creates and publishes authoritative information resources on occupational health and safety for the benefit of all working Canadians. This information is used for education and training, research, policy development, development of best practices, improvement of health and safety programs, achieving compliance, and for personal use. When the products or services provided by CCOHS are used by identifiable external recipients with benefits beyond those enjoyed by the general taxpayer, a user fee is charged.

CCOHS promotes and facilitates consultation and cooperation among federal, provincial and territorial jurisdictions and participation by labour, management and other stakeholders in the establishment and maintenance of high standards and occupational health and safety initiatives for the Canadian context. The sharing of resources results in the coordinated and mutually beneficial development of unique programs, products and services. Collaborative projects are usually supported with a combination of financial and non-financial contributions to the programs by stakeholders and result in advancement of occupational health and safety initiatives.

Strategic Outcome

Canadians will be provided with unbiased occupational health and safety information and services for the prevention of work-related illnesses and injuries

Program Activity

Occupational health and safety information development, delivery services and tripartite collaboration

Program Sub- Activities: Expected Results

  • Easy access to occupational health and safety information and services
  • Application of OHS information to improve workplace practices
  • Increased awareness and understanding of occupational health and safety issues in the workplace
  • Partial Recovery of Costs from User Fees

Inquiries

  • Web access/design
  • New Resources
  • Osh Answers Content
  • New risks
  • Refinement of existing products
  • OHS management System
  • High quality Information
  • Improved Application in workplaces
  • Foster collaboration
  • Education
  • National Forum
  • Training, conferences and presentation
  • Enhance web presence
  • Resources for Chemical health and safety
  • Health and Safety Report
  • OHS products

 

1.2 Performance Summary

2008-09 Financial Resources ($ Thousands)

2008-2009
PlannedTotal Authorities Actual Spending
4,713 5,312 4,925

Planned spending represents the amount authorized through the main estimates process. Authorities represents the total amounts authorized for the entire year, including the main estimates. The increase in total authorities represents funding received for compensation relating to collective bargaining, rollover amounts and other transfers. Details are provided in our annual report at: http://www.ccohs.ca/ccohs/reports.html The difference between total authorities and actual spending is due to timing of cash receipts at year end. A large portion of revenues are earned and collected at year-end and it is not feasible to responsibly spend all these funds within a short time frame. The resulting carryover is used in the next fiscal period.

2008-09 Human Resources (FTEs)

2008-2009
PlannedActualDifference
96906

The difference between actual and planned is that there are more FTE's in the estimates than can be funded. Since CCOHS must earn a substantial portion of its operating funding, we must earn the funds prior to making the commitment to spend. This includes assurance of available funds for the staffing of additional needed positions.

Strategic Outcome: Canadians will be provided with unbiased occupational health and safety information and services for the prevention of work-related illnesses and injuries
Performance Indicators Targets Performance Summary
Satisfaction with access and ease of use for resources Over 80% satisfaction ratings for Inquirers and clients Overall satisfaction of 80% inquirers and 82% clients
Increase awareness and understanding Increase of 10% of distributions of information Increase of awareness through increase distribution of information materials and web site - over 11%
Application of occupational health and safety information 72% used information to make positive change in the workplace to improve health and safety 75% used information to make change
    Overall satisfaction with key stakeholders

Summary of Achievements against Priorities

  • Achieved an 80% satisfaction rating from Inquirers from average of six attributes measured through an independent evaluation.
  • Achieved an 85% satisfaction rating from customers (average of six attributes) from independent evaluation of clients through an evaluation.
  • Most of the uses 75% for Inquirers and 76% for purchaser of CCOHS information relate to either current or future changes to the workplace that may result in improved workplace health and safety.
  • When asked CCOHS' importance to meeting the health and safety needs of their organization, 83% of respondents said that CCOHS was either very important or important.
  • Increase in distributions of health and safety report, website and e-learning participants greater than 11%.
  • Key informants were nearly unanimous in their positive assessments about the high quality of its products and services.

In thousands (000's)

Program Activity Expected Results 2008-09 Alignment to Government of Canada Outcomes
Planned Spending Total Authorities Actual Spending
Occupational health and safety information development, delivery services and tripartite collaboration. Easy access to Occupational Health and Safety Information And Service
Increased Awareness and understanding of occupational health and safety issues in the workplace.
Application of occupational health and safety information to improve workplace practices.
4,713 5,312 4,925 Healthy Canadians
Total 4,713 5,312 4,925  

Contribution of Priorities to Strategic Outcomes

Operational Priorities Type1 Status Linkages to Strategic Outcome(s)
Provide additional resources on chemical health and safety New Met all Linked to improved workplace conditions and practices that enhance the health, safety and well being of working Canadians
Importantce relates to high incidence of questions relating to chemicals and need to provide safety tools for their safe use
  • Launched new product CANWrite MSDS writing software involved in evaluating regulatory requirements and hazard communicaton.
  • Developed WHMIS training for Safety inspectors course.
  • Developed occupational and environmental cancer: recognition and prevention course aimed at medical professionals.
  • Developed Global Harmonised System of Classification and Labelling of chemicals information such as posters, courses and information sheets.
Working with chemicals safely is essential to workplace safety.

It is important that safety inspectors and the medical community fully understand the issues and health concerns.
Promoting healthy workplaces through internet, training and eduation ongoing Mostly met As above
Awareness is key to changing attitudes which leads to change in the workplace
  • Provided Health and Safety Report via the internet with 96% satisfaction ratings
  • Promoted health and safety via webinars, podcasts, NAOSH week, awards, Day of mourning, presentations and posters
  • Development and re-design of OHS information portals
  • Creation and launch of Workscape OHS discussion Board
Information resources apply directly to enhancing well being of working Canadians eg. Healthy Workplaces, Young Workers Zone and Workspace
Expand e-learning resources including customized courses ongoing Met As above
Training has direct impact on improvements in workplace Added 15 new courses this year and additional public awareness events on important occupational health and safety topics. Improves direct knowledge of workers for application in the workplace to improve health and safety.

1Type is defined as follows: previously committed to-committed to in the first or second fiscal year prior to the subject year of the report; ongoing-committed to at least three fiscal years prior to the subject year of the report; and new-newly committed to in the reporting year of the RPP or DPR.

Management Priorities Type Status Linkages to Strategic Outcome(s)
Enhancement of e-commerce to attract more clients to contribute to our requirement to pay 50% of operating costs. Ongoing Exceeded expectations


Increased sales 107% in e-commerce
As above

Important to make our information and resources accessible electronically 24 hours and to improve our cost recovery to support our public programming.
Improve website New Met expectations:
  • Common look and feel update
  • Updated infrastructure
  • Improved reporting and statistics using google analytics
  • Improved IT security
As above

Important to stay current with IT infrastructure to meet the needs of the Canadians.

Risk Analysis

CCOHS relies on partnerships and resources from many organizations and governments to deliver its programs. Governments and non-profit organizations are subject to changing priorities and limited resources. These changes in priorities impact stakeholders' and partners' ability to support CCOHS and fiscal changes within those organizations also impact CCOHS. Risks include funding levels, support and participation in programs and access to information and revenue streams for CCOHS. In order to address these risks, CCOHS keeps in close contact with its stakeholders and is proactive in dealing with risks and anticipating change. CCOHS continually seeks ongoing partnerships with a variety of organizations and does not rely on limited range of organizations.

From the internet, the public has increased access to world wide information making sales of traditional CCOHS databases less relevant. CCOHS must continually update and expand its product offering in order to remain financially viable. With this trend of reduced database sales, it became evident that CCOHS would not be financially viable without replacement income. CCOHS addressed this situation with the development of e-learning courses and also with customized MSDS management services and OHS management services.

CCOHS is impacted by overall economic conditions such as foreign exchange fluctuations and economic slowdowns since we rely on revenue generation from the business sector. CCOHS continually reviews its products and services and makes improvements to keep these offerings relevant to users.

The availability of free information on the internet continues to strain CCOHS' ability to generate sales from information products. It is difficult to balance the role of providing a free of charge public service with our need to generate funds through cost recovery. When operating in a government environment it is difficult to achieve financial success, as the goal of helping people does not always coincide with the mandate to achieve cost recovery.

Data from performance management feedback surveys clearly indicates that provision of current OHS information is essential to operating a credible service. CCOHS products are information based, which require constant updating to remain current. In addition, with continually changing technologies, our infrastructure must be updated on an ongoing basis. Information, secured from other sources, for CCOHS' information infrastructure and product development, frequently requires payment of royalties and CCOHS is at risk from business decisions being made at other organizations. Examples include the recent discontinuation of the Canadian Health Network resulting in a significant loss of income.

CCOHS' traditional database resources have been declining in revenue for many years. With this trend, generating 50% of its budget from these sources is not realistic. CCOHS has mitigated this risk by developing OHS management programs as more of a value added service. This included the development of e-learning courses, customized MSDS management services and OSH management services.Recent product additions include the offering of of a MSDS authoring program, CANWrite.

Similar to other organizations, a significant portion of our staff will soon become eligible for retirement. This is a serious concern as technical, scientific and business knowledge will be lost and it will be difficult to replace. In order to plan for the retirement of staff members, the staff have been re-organized into working groups or teams. This promotes knowledge transfer in anticipation of retirements so there are other trained individuals available to replace the loss of key employees.

Expenditure Profile

Departmental Spending Trend

Departmental Spending Trend

For the year 2006-7 to 2008-9 periods, the total spending includes all Parliamentary appropriations, Main Estimates, Supplementary Estimates, Treasury Board Vote 10, 15 and 23. It also includes carry forwards and adjustments. The planned spending represents the main estimates.

CCOHS' funding remains consistent from year to year other than increases for compensations. Fluctuations in funding are primarily due to carry forward amounts and recovery of paylist shortfalls relating to retirements and maternity leave. Spending is impacted by the ability to raise revenues to cover the un-funded portion of the budget.

Voted and Statutory Items(in thousands)

Vote # or Statutory Item (S) Canadian Centre for Occupational Health and Safety 2006-2007
Actual Spending
2007-2008
Actual Spending
2008-2009
Main Estimates
2008-2009
Actual Spending
25 Operating expenditures 3,544 3,672 3,682 3,929
(S) Contributions to employee benefit plans 962 979 1,031 996
  Total 4,506 4,651 4,713 4,925

Section II: Analysis of Program Activities by Strategic Outcome

2.1 Strategic Outcome - Canadians will be provided with unbiased occupational health and safety information and services for the prevention of work-related illnesses and injuries.

The Act to create the Canadian Centre for Occupational Health and Safety (CCOHS) was based on the concept that all Canadians have ". a fundamental right to a healthy and safe working environment." A national centre would be an essential requirement to enable people to exercise this right everywhere in the country, a concept launched and supported by stakeholders across Canada. The resulting Act in 1978 had unanimous support from every federal party.

The Centre was created to provide a common focus for and co-ordination of information in the area of occupational health and safety. Prior to 1978, Canada was the only major industrialized nation that did not have a central body for this task. Given the large, diverse and multi-jurisdictional aspects of Canada, such a service is essential. Its key stakeholders, government (all levels), employers and labour work closely with CCOHS to promote occupational health and safety, and to foster consultations and co-operation with the mutual goal of reducing or eliminating occupational illnesses and injuries.

CCOHS is governed by a tripartite Council of Governors, comprised of representatives from labour, business and provincial, territorial and federal governments. This tripartite structure helps to ensure that CCOHS remains an independent and trusted source of unbiased information. The stakeholders participate actively in the governance of CCOHS making it unique as a tripartite organization that helps ensure its programs and services are unbiased, credible and meet the on-going needs of Canadians. Our recent evaluation (2009) stated:

The core strategic outcome for CCOHS is that Canadians will be provided with unbiased occupational health and safety information and services for the prevention of work-related illnesses and injuries. This objective involves CCOHS being recognized as a national clearinghouse for health and safety information and as the recognized leader in providing unbiased occupational health and safety (OHS) information and services to Canada's OHS community. This community includes workers, their unions, employers, governments, educational institutions and related OHS professionals. Access to a leading and unbiased source of health and safety information provides further benefits to Canadians through a reduction in the extent of workplace disagreement and conflict over appropriate health and safety initiatives.

The evaluation used multiple lines of evidence to assess the extent to which CCOHS has achieved this recognition as an unbiased national OHS centre. We conducted interviews with leading members of the OHS community, we surveyed paying clients and users of free services and surveyed users of the CCOHS web site.

The activities of CCOHS are related to the promotion of occupational health and safety in the context of Canada's decentralized system of OHS internal responsibility. The benefits of these activities are difficult to measure directly. CCOHS products and services are intended to lead to improved workplace conditions that ultimately lead to fewer illnesses, fewer injuries, and fewer deaths. In addition to these risk reduction benefits, reduced time loss and increased productivity from fewer accidents and injuries are an additional source of benefits. Current research on the value of reducing occupational fatality risks and preventing accidents indicates that Canadian society assigns a very high value to such reductions in workplace risks.

Data in this evaluation study show that there have been very significant and continuing declines in workplace fatalities and injuries relative to the number of workers employed. Many factors have influenced the decline in injury and fatality rates over time so that it has not been possible to determine the independent impact of CCOHS on these declines. In this report, the extent of the improvement in workplace conditions, attributed by users to the information disseminated by CCOHS, is used as a proxy measure of the health and safety impact of CCOHS. Our analysis, based on interviews and surveys, found that the reach of CCOHS products and services is substantial. As a result, we can establish plausible linkages between CCOHS activities and its intended effects on improving workplace conditions.

While directly attributing reductions in injuries and illnesses to CCOHS programs is not feasible due to many variables affecting this outcome, independent evaluations of our services indicate wide spread use of CCOHS information to effect change in workplaces. The extensive use of CCOHS information may result in reductions in injuries and illnesses throughout.

Exhibit IV-1 shows comparative data on occupational injuries and fatalities for 2007 (the latest year for which published data are available), and selected earlier years going back to 1970. There have been significant reductions in injuries and fatalities relative to numbers of workers but the numbers remain high and require our continuing attention. The reductions in both injuries and fatalities likely result from a variety of factors including a changing industry mix, changing production technologies, better educated workers and industry initiatives together with occupational health and safety policies and programs, including the activities of CCOHS.2

2 CCOHS Program Evaluation and Financial Capacity Assessment, 2009.

Exhibit IV-1 Occupational Injuries and Fatalities in Canada

Year Employees (millions) Time-Loss Injuries Fatalities Injuries per million workers Fatalities per million workers
1970 7.03 301,653 918 42,909 131
1998 14.33 375,360 798 26,201 56
2003 15.80 348,854 963 22,709 61
2005 16.17 337,390 1,097 20,865 68
2007 16.87 317,524 1,055 18,822 63

 

Source: Human Resources Development Canada, Occupational Injuries and their Cost in Canada, 1993-1997, 1999, and Statistical Analysis: Occupational Injuries and Fatalities, Canada, 1994-1998, 2000. For 2003, 2005 and 2007: Work Injuries and Diseases National Work Injuries Statistics Program, Association of Workers' Compensation Boards of Canada, 2001-2003, and 2005-2007 and Labour Force Survey,2003, 2005, 2007, Statistics Canada.

2.1.1 Program Activity:
Program Activity: Occupational health and safety information development, delivery services and tripartite collaboration.
2008-09 Financial Resources ($thousands) 2008-09 Human Resources (FTEs)
Planned Spending Total Authorities Actual Spending Planned Actual Difference
4,713 5,312 4,925 96 90 6
Expected Results Performance Indicators Targets Performance Status Performance Summary
Easy access to Occuptional Health and Safety Information And Service % of users satisfied with ease of access and retrieval of OHS information from Inquiries Service, web access and other CCOHS resources Overall 80%Satisfied or very satisfied:
  • Understanding 85%
  • Time 82%
  • Completeness 80%
  • Usefulness 80%
  • Clarity 80%
  • Courtesy 89%
Met expectations Overall 80% satisfied or very satisfied:
  • Understanding 77%
  • Timeliness 83%
  • Completeness 77%
  • Usefulness 80%
  • Clarity 77%
  • Courtesy 83%
Application of occupational health and safety information to improve workplace practices. Percentage of respondents that say information is being applied in the workplace by employees, government and employers to make change. 72% is used to make change in the workplace Expectations met 75% Inquirers
76% Customers used information to make change in the workplace
Number of participant institutions in the academic support package 110 post secondary institutions Mostly met 105 Institutions, reach of 3.6 million
High quality information products and services available for the workplace Usage statistics and satisfaction surveys Met expectations Satisfaction 97%
Referral 94.6%
Usage and satisfaction statistics for educational programs e-learning
95% satisfaction
94% Referral rate
90% Satisfaction Classroom
Webinar 80%
Satisfaction rate
Expectations met Satisfaction 82%
Increased Awareness and understanding of occupational health and safety issues in the workplace. Numbers of Distributions of OHS information to employees and employers to improve their understanding of OSH Increase distributions of materials by 10%
Webinars
Naosh week
Day of Mourning
Posters
Workscape
Liaison
Exceeded expectations 40% increase locations
45% increase locations
51% increase is webstatistics
Posters - new program, 1000 posters and 23,139 pdf versions
New - 800 participants
New - increase 51% subscribers
Satisfaction of attendees from Forum and post forum web statistics 85% satisfaction
2,000 downloads
Met expectations
Mostly met
84% Satisfaction

1,958 downloads
Reach, impact and satisfaction with the Health and Safety Report 85% Satisfaction
83% impact to make safer work place
10% increase in usage
Exceeded expectations 100% Satisfaction
80.6% to improve workplace
16.9% increase in distributions
Providing Canadians new information to Canadians through partnerships Reach of partnerships outcomes Met expectations 5 new partnerships
5 Collaborative websites/portals
Program Activity Summary:

CCOHS has one program activity (PAA), occupational health and safety information development, delivery services and tripartite collaboration.

As a national institute, CCOHS undertakes a wide range of activities to achieve its objectives. These activities include the following:

  • The provision of technical documents, data and related safety information to workers, workplaces and the health and safety community, Canadian workplace communities and the education system. An important element of these activities is to improve the coordination of the flow of occupational health and safety information.
  • The promotion and evaluation of research on occupational health and safety issues.
  • The provision of expert advice and training in occupational health and safety.
  • Participation in meetings and conferences to contribute to improving prevention of safety and health problems.
  • Other activities consistent with the mandate of promoting improved health and safety in the workplace and enhance the physical and mental health of Canadian workers.

Maintaining the health of Canadians is an important goal for Canada. Workplace health is an essential component of overall health of Canadians. CCOHS contributes to Canada's goal of a healthy population, sustainable development, safe communities, and Canada's role in the world. CCOHS works closely with labour, business and all levels of government to establish high standards for occupational health and safety, to foster consultation and co-operation, and reduce or eliminate occupational hazards.

Benefits for Canadians:

CCOHS is a national centre dedicated to the advancement and dissemination of unbiased information on occupational health and safety. CCOHS provides Canadians with information about occupational health and safety that is trustworthy, comprehensive and intelligible. The information facilitates responsible decision-making, promotes improvements in workplace health and safety, increases awareness of the need for a healthy and safe working environment, and supports training.

This program activity contributes to the goal of Healthy Canadians. Occupational diseases, illnesses and deaths are serious health risks faced by Canadians. The government plans to strengthen our social foundations by improving the overall health of Canadians starting with health promotion to reduce the incidence of avoidable disease. One of the most effective strategies in reducing ill health is the prevention of the causes. CCOHS' primary role is to support Canada's capability to improve prevention of work-related illnesses and disease by providing information and knowledge to enable Canadians to identify hazards and minimize or eliminate risks in the workplace and assist them to address issues and take remedial action.

CCOHS contributes to greater collaboration among nations to promote the sharing of information and knowledge for programs relating to occupational health and safety to reduce injuries and illness and improve conditions for workers. This promotes a safe and secure world through international co-operation. CCOHS also benefits Canadians by providing extensive information on a wide range of health hazards on hazardous chemicals and their impact on health and the environment. CCOHS is a major source of environmental health information relied upon by government regulators, the chemical industry, manufacturing sectors, fire fighters and citizens.

Performance Analysis:

CCOHS organizes its activities to meet the expected results linked to our program activity and strategic outcome:

  • Easy access to occupational health and safety information and services
  • Application of occupational health and safety (OHS) information to improve workplace practices
  • Increased awareness and understanding of occupational health and safety issues in the workplace
  • Partial recovery of costs from user fees (raise other revenues)
Easy access to occupational health and safety information and services

The primary risk of achieving the goals for this expected result is funding sources. This service is partially funded by voluntary contributions from most Canadian provinces and territories. These funding bodies are subject to funding availabilities in their own jurisdictions. The vast amounts of information from the internet is another risk. In order to mitigate this risk, CCOHS strives to distinguish itself as a trusted and reliable source of information by keeping information current and relevant to the users. CCOHS also adds value by providing information web portals and partnerships with trusted organizations so users can rely on the credibility of the data provided.

CCOHS offers an inquiries service that has fully trained information officers who specialize in occupational health and safety and information retrieval. CCOHS has extensive publications, worldwide database and an in-house library to provide current and relevant answers to Canadian Inquiries. In addition, we have a self-serve website, OSH Answers, that answers 6.8 million on-line inquiries. Our person to person service answered 12,514 inquiries. Our recent evaluation provided satisfaction results as follows:

Level of Satisfaction with CCOHS Inquiries Service (% of respondents indicating either very satisfied or satisfied)

Indicator% satisfied
Timeliness 83%
Knowledge and ability of staff 77%
Courtesy of staff 83%
Completeness 77%
Usefulness 80%
Clarity 77%
Reliability 81%
Average 80%
Overall satisfaction with information received (separate question) 67%

Source: Data for CCOHS is from a survey of users conducted by TNS Canadian Facts 2009.

CCOHS performs its own surveys on a ongoing basis as evaluations are done every 4 to 5 years. This survey was conducted on users of the service during a 9 month time frame. Our internal surveys are done within two to four weeks after service delivery.CCOHS provides additional information through copyright requests resulting in 357,000 copies of CCOHS information being made available to the public through many institutions. These distributions are shared with many more users.

CCOHS also improved its web design complying with the common look and feel requirements of the government of Canada and continually enhances the website to provide up to date data. CCOHS developed and maintains several web portals on various topics such as workplace health, pandemic planning, Canosh, and NAOSH.

OSH Answers provides over 650 documents answering over 8 million inquiries to 2.5 million unique visitors to the site. CCOHS monitors trends and current developments to provide current information to meet the needs of Canadians.

CCOHS also publishes guides each year to reach workers as an on the job tool. There are currently 20 titles available. This year, a new guide Telework and Home Office Health and Safety Guide was released and our Workplace Wellness Guide was issued in its second edition. Our satisfaction survey for publications indicates a 93% satisfaction rate and a 93% recommendation rate. Clients feel this publication delivers good value for money, stating 96% satisfied or very satisfied. Over 93% said that the publication helped them improve their understanding of health and safety.

Application of occupational health and safety (OHS) information to improve workplace practices

The expected result of CCOHS activities is to improve the application of occupational health and safety to improve workplace practices. This includes several priorities to achieve this goal. CCOHS promotes collaboration and exchanges through national dialogues, forums and conferences to increase applications in the workplace and improve practices. We work closely with the education sector and partners to expand and improve teaching of health and safety in schools and providing them with resources.

CCOHS promotes application in the workplace with tools such as the CanOsh website, http://www.canoshweb.org/ to help Canadians locate Canadian occupational safety and health information for the purpose of legal compliance, improving workplace health and safety practices and ultimately to facilitate the acquisition of information required for the reduction of workplace fatalities, injuries and illnesses. This website helps Canadians navigate 14 governmental jurisdictions and multiple websites. In 2008-9, more than 54,000 people accessed this site 160,000 times this year.

CCOHS works with many international organizations to obtain up to date information for Canadians. The details of many collaborative projects are outlined in our annual report.

CCOHS measures the application of its programs through surveys asking if information provided will result in changes in the workplace. Our recent independent evaluation asked this question for users of products, services and the inquiries service.

The survey responses indicate that most, 75% for Inquirers and 76% for clients, of the uses of CCOHS information relate to either current or future changes to the workplace that may result in improved workplace health and safety. This clearly demonstrates that CCOHS goals are being met.

In terms of the overall importance of the CCOHS Inquiries Service in meeting the health and safety needs of their organization, 76% of respondents said that CCOHS was either very important or important. For product users, the result was higher with 83% saying CCOHS was either very important or important.

Training and education are effective means of improving employers' and workers' awareness and knowledge of their rights and responsibilities with regard to OSH and are directly applicable to the workplace. Another recent study found only one in five Canadian workers received training in their first year of a new job.3 The risk to health is related to the workers newness to a job, a lack of training and hazardous work conditions. CCOHS offers courses in various environments that include traditional classroom, customized courses and e-learning to help meet the needs of Canadians. Courses are reviewed by tri-partite external reviewers to ensure relevancy and comprehensiveness.

CCOHS continued to expand its internet based e-learning courses this year. There are currently 15 new courses and a total of 45 bilingual courses. There are also free courses available on the website for the general public. These courses have helped train thousands of workers and have a very high satisfaction rating of 97.1% and a recommendation rate of 94.6%. The students reported 94.8% helped improve their understanding of occupational health and safety and 64.2% say the information will be used to make change in the workplace.

Increased Awareness and Understanding of Occupational Health and Safety issues in the Workplace

CCOHS' goal is to increase awareness and understanding of occupational health and safety issues in the workplace. Awareness is the first step leading to changes that will result in reductions in workplace illness and injuries and death. This is accomplished through many public communications strategies and training.

The primary risk in achieving this goal is the limits of financial resources and staffing. CCOHS also relies on partnerships with other organizations to expand its reach. During the year, CCOHS undertook many initiatives to increase awareness and understanding.

The Health and Safety report is a monthly free e-newsletter distributed to anyone who signs up for the service. The content is widely reproduced by other organizations to enhance their own health and safety program. The service is very popular with a 16.9% increase this year to over 24,000 members. Each year a readership survey is conducted and it showed a 100% satisfaction rating and 93.7% saying the newsletter provides value to their organization. They also reported that 70.5% of respondents said the use of the information from the Report is directly/indirectly related to changes in their workplace that might improve health and safety. The report is often used for other newsletters, bulleting boards and orientation kits. 90% of subscribers share the report with others.

3Smith, Peter and Mustard, Cameron, How Many Employees Receive Safety Training During Their First Year of a New Job?, Injury Prevention, 2007, Volume 13, Issue 1

CCOHS also began a poster program to provide the public tools to help raise awareness of workplace health and safety issues. This program has been very successful with over 23,000 free downloads and 1,100 sales of posters.

During the year, CCOHS launched a new web discussion board to encourage knowledge exchange and community building amongst OHS professions and those with an interest in workplace health and safety. There are now 800 members and thousands more that view ongoing discussions.

CCOHS also has a webinar program to encourage people to host information sessions as an easy and efficient means to share information. These programs have been held to promote NAOSH week. CCOHS also partnered with the Healthy Workplace Coalition and Trillium Health Centre to produce a webinar on creating a healthy workplace. CCOHS also actively participates and partners with other organizations to promote the National Day of Mourning and North American Occupational Safety and Health Week and Canadian Healthy Workplaces Month. There are also several web portals to increase awareness of key issues. They include the Young Workers Zone, Bringing Health to Work, Pandemic Planning and many others. A summary of links is provided at the end of the report.

CCOHS has also begun a social media campaign using Twitter, Slideshare and Facebook to increase awareness to promote workplace health and safety and improve understanding. Through our website we reach over 7 million visitors with 46.5 million hits. CCOHS information reaches more individuals than the initial contact. The summary below shows the reach.

A summary of the quantitative data establishing the reach of CCOHS products and services in Canadian workplaces is shown in Exhibit IV-4. The key point of this exhibit is that not only does CCOHS have a large number of users and clients of its products and services but that the information and products they provide have a large number of users within the organization. Using the data in Exhibit IV-4, (together with a relatively conservative assumption that the "more than 500" category is 750) allows us to calculate the average number of workers affected by the products, services and information in each of the three columns of the exhibit. This average number of workers who could benefit from the information is 81 for the Inquiries Service, 80 for paid web products, 97 for other paid products and 208 for information supplied to users of the web site. 4

4 CCOHS Program Evaluation and Financial Capacity Assessment, 2009

Exhibit IV-4 Reach of Information in Organizations Using CCOHS Products and Services

Persons using within Organization Inquiries Service Paid Web Products Other Paid Products Web Site
1-10 62.4% 62.3% 65.6% 28.7%
11-100 25.3% 26.6% 15.6% 36.1%
101-500 7.0% 4.8% 12.5% 17.0%
More than 500 5.6% 6.2% 6.3% 18.1%

Partial recovery of costs from user fees

CCOHS generates 47% of is own revenues through cost recovery initiatives and support from other organizations. As CCOHS was directed to recover costs to finance 50% of its budget, it is necessary to have a cost recovery program. While it is extremely difficult to finance, CCOHS develops products to promote workplace health and safety and encourage attitudes and methods that will lead to improved worker physical and mental health.

Details about various cost recovery initiatives can be found in our annual report.

Lessons Learned:

During the past several years the ability to produce revenues from the sale of traditional database products has declined. With the change in technology and the workplace, it is a constant challenge to meet the ongoing needs of Canadians. CCOHS has learned that seeking feedback from the public is essential to providing what Canadians need to meet their occupational health and safety requirements. CCOHS has learned that providing information is the first step in the process of change, but the information must be provided in a meaningful format that is understandable to the user. In order to meet the changing needs of Canadians, CCOHS has implemented an ongoing performance management program to seek feedback at various service points. CCOHS has also learned that there must be continuous change in communication strategies and the delivery of various products. With this in mind CCOHS implemented webinars, podcasts, e-newsletters, posters and e-learning to help Canadians learn about health and safety.

Section III. Supplementary Information
3.1 Financial Highlights

The financial highlights presented within this DPR are intended to serve as a general overview of CCOHS' financial position and operations. CCOHS' financial statements can be found on our website at: http://www.ccohs.ca/ccohs/reports/reports_council.html

Condensed Statement of Financial Position
At End of Year (March 31, 2009)
($ thousands)
% Change 2009 2008
ASSETS
Total Assets -9% 1,096,228 1,214,122
TOTAL -9% 1,096,228 1,214,122
LIABILITIES
Total Liabilities -9% 3,682,466 3,360,203
EQUITY
Total Equity -20% (2,586,238) (2,146,081)
TOTAL -9% 1,096,228 1,214,122
EXPENSES
Total Expenses 2% 10,185,784 9,896,886
REVENUES
Total Revenues -11% 3,590,251 3,990,818
NET COST OF OPERATIONS -13% (6,595,533) (5.906,808)

 

Assets are lower this year as there were no large outstanding amounts at year end from government clients. We have been purchasing less computer equipment resulting lower values as assets depreciate yearly.

Assets by Type

Liabilities are higher due to employee severance benefits increases as staff are older and have been at CCOHS longer resulting in higher liability.

Liabilities by Type

Salaries and benefits represent are largest expense and our employees are our biggest asset. We also incur costs for professional services for items such as translation, royalties on information products and staff development. Overall, expenses are comparable to prior year, excluding compensation increases.

Expenses - Where Funds Go

CCOHS earns revenues from the sale of various products and services relating to health and safety. This includes e-learning, collaborative projects, legislation, chemical databases and management services. Overall, revenue is down from the prior year due to a discontinuation of a major project, CHN and fewer government projects.

Revenues - Where Funds Go
3.2 List of Tables

The following tables are located on the Treasury Board Secretariat website:

  • Table 1: Sources of Respendendable Revenue
  • Table 2: Internal Audits and evaluations
  • Table 3: Policy on service Standards
3.3 Other Items of Interest

A. Contacts for Further Information

For further information about this document or any of the products and services available from the Canadian Centre for Occupational Health and Safety please contact:

CCOHS
135 Hunter Street East
Hamilton ON L8N 1M5
Tel: 905-572-2981
1-800-668-4284 Canada and US
Fax: 905-572-2206
www.ccohs.ca

  • S Len Hong
    President and Chief Executive Officer
    905-572-2981, ext 4433
    hongl@ccohs.ca
  • P K Abeytunga
    Vice-President and Director General
    905-572-2981, ext 4537
    abey@ccohs.ca
  • Bonnie Easterbrook
    Controller
    905-572-2981, ext 4401
    bonniee@ccohs.ca
  • Norma Gibson MacDonald
    Manager, General Health and Safety Products and Services
    905-572-2981, ext 4527
    normag@ccohs.ca
  • Renzo Bertolini
    Manager, Inquiries and Client Services
    905-572-2981, ext 4477
    renzob@ccohs.ca
  • Eleanor Westwood
    Manager, Communications
    905-572-2981, ext 4408
    eleanorw@ccohs.ca
  • David Brophy
    Manager, Computer Systems and Services
    905-572-2981, ext 4498
    davidb@ccohs.ca
  • Louise Henderson
    Manager, Human Resources
    905-572-2981, ext 4404
    louiseh@ccohs.ca
  • Chris Moore
    Manager, Training and Education
    905-572-2981, ext 4462
    chrism@ccohs.ca
  • Lorraine Davison
    Manager, Chemical Services
    905-572-2981, ext 4466
    lorraind@ccohs.ca

B.  Legislation Administered by Name of Department

The federal Minister of Labour has sole responsibility to Parliament for the following Acts:

Canadian Centre for Occupational Health and Safety Act R.S., 1985, c. C-13

C. Key Reviews

During the period of this report, there were no new reports. All previous reports, evaluations and reviews can be accessed at: http://www.ccohs.ca/ccohs/reports.html.

D. Listing of Statutory and Departmental Reports

  • Canadian Centre for Occupational Health and Safety Council of Governors' Annual Report to Parliament 2008-09
  • Report on Plans and Priorities 2008-09
  • Program Evaluation and Cost Recovery Study 2001
  • CCOHS Program Evaluation and Performance Measurement Study, 2005
  • CCOHS Program Evaluation and Financial Capacity Assessment, 2009
  • Modern Comptrollership Capacity Assessment 2002
  • Customer Satisfaction Research Report 2004

These items are available at http://www.ccohs.ca/ccohs/reports.html.

E. Links to CCOHS web portals: