Joint Health & Safety Committee Certification Training: Part I & Part II: What’s the Difference?

For companies with more than 20 workers, having a Joint Health and Safety Committee (JHSC) is a must. Not only does it reduce the number of lost-time injuries, proactively control workplace hazards, and give employees a way to actively participate in their health and safety, but it is a legislated requirement under the Occupational Health and Safety Act as well.

A Brief History of JHSC Certification Training

In 1976, in response to public criticism regarding inadequate worker protection, the Ontario government established a Royal Commission under James Ham, known as the Ham Royal Commission. The resulting report of the Ham Royal Commission contained several recommendations. Most notable was the introduction of the Internal Responsibility System (IRS), which included the Joint Health and Safety Committee (JHSC). Although bill 208, which featured the requirement for certified JHSC members, did not receive assent until 1990, the idea of uniform Joint Health and Safety Committee training took root long before. The idea of Joint Health and Safety Committee Certification Training was that it would be delivered in two parts: Basic Certification Training in Part I, and Workplace-specific Hazard Training in Part II.

What’s the Difference Between JHSC Certification Part I and Part II?

Joint Health and Safety Certification Training Part I is not workplace or hazard specific. It covers health and safety principles and theories, such as roles and responsibilities, health and safety legislation, hazard recognition, assessment, control, and evaluation (RACE), and accident investigation.

Part I also covers the function of the JHSC, and the legal requirement for how often they must meet, how often they must inspect the workplace, their role in work refusals and bi-lateral work stoppages, and how much they are expected to be involved with an investigation if there is an accident. JHSC members are also exempt from some laws, and Part I explains where and why JHSC members may be exempt from legislation found in the Act.

Part II teaches the application of the hazard recognition principles to real-life hazards in your specific workplace. Using a solid job hazard analysis model (JHA), Part II ensures that workplace-specific hazards can efficiently be recognized, controlled, and evaluated. It allows participants to practice drafting action plans and making recommendations for safer workplaces. 

Why is the JHSC Training Split in Two Parts?

In total, Joint Health and Safety Committee is five days long. Many employers can’t spare their workers for as many days, so it makes sense to split the course and put minimal impacts on productivity. Splitting the course also aids in retention. One component of Part II is recalling the important theories covered in Part I. Many learners find it easier to retain information that is delivered in chunks as opposed to one, week-long training marathon. Because Part I and Part II cover such different subject matter, splitting the courses also helps learners differentiate between the theory portion and the more hands-on application of those theories.

Do You Need Help Getting Started?

Having an active JHSC is one of the best ways to increase the safety culture in your workplace. OSG is the largest private provider of JHSC Part 1 and Part 2 training. If you have questions about starting or running your JHSC, or how to recruit workers to join the JHSC, call 1-800-815-9980 to speak to a Health and Safety expert today. If you need to book your JHSC part 1 or part 2 training, click the links below.

Written by Jennifer Miller | Curriculum Development Coordinator


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