Ontario Nurses’ Association says Southlake Regional Health Centre has not complied with Occupational Health & Safety Act - Union awaits Ministry of Labour investigation report on critical injury of a registered nurse
January 25, 2019
TORONTO, January 25, 2019 – Following the critical injury of a registered nurse (RN) attacked in an incident of workplace violence last week, the Ontario Nurses’ Association (ONA) notes that Southlake Regional Health Centre has not complied with clear responsibilities as defined in the province’s Occupational Health & Safety Act.
As details emerge about the violent workplace attack on the RN, ONA President Vicki McKenna, RN, says hospital officials failed to immediately report the attack to the union, the Joint Health and Safety Committee and the Ministry of Labour, as required by law.
“This horrific attack should never have happened,” said McKenna. “The employer has a very clear responsibility to take every precaution reasonable to keep its nurses and other staff safe, keeping our patients safe as well.”
McKenna noted that ONA and its members are anxiously awaiting a report from the Ministry of Labour into the attack on the nurse, saying the investigation appears to be a thorough one. However, she also said that the hospital’s actions appear to signal that they continue to fail to take workplace violence seriously.
“Southlake Regional Health Centre has just released its strategic plan, indicating that it covers their most pressing issues,” said McKenna. “Yet, there is no mention of workplace safety. What will it take for this employer to take action to keep its workers safe – thereby ensuring the safety and security of its patients?”
ONA is the union representing more than 65,000 registered nurses and health-care professionals, as well as 18,000 nursing student affiliates, providing care in hospitals, long-term care facilities, public health, the community, clinics and industry.