December 15, 2010

Minutes of Meeting

UTM Joint Health & Safety Committee

Wednesday, December 15, 2010- 9:00 a.m.

Room 2068B, William G. Davis Building

Present:Ivan Ampuero, Sandy Arch, Tamara Breukelman, Sara Chavez, Rob Eidukaitis, Mike Foley, Paull Goldsmith, John Janczura, Devin Kreuger, Rubina Lewis, Dale Mullings, Louise Oliver, Len Paris, Anthony Sestito, Steve Suraci

Regrets: Susan Allison, Dave Clancy, Donna Coulson, Andrea De Vito, Adrian Georgescu, Patrick Gunning, Paul Handley, Khalique Mohiuddin, Laura Patterson, Susan Senese, Wei-Ting Shek

Approval of Agenda

Moved by Devin Kreuger, seconded by Ivan Ampuero, that the Agenda be approved.


Minutes of Previous Meeting

Moved by Sara Chavez, seconded by Ivan Ampuero, that the minutes of the previous meeting be approved. 


Introduction and welcome to new members

Len welcomed Tamara Breukelman, Operations Manager for the Mississauga Academy of Medicine, to the Committee.

Business Arising from the Minutes

 a) Accident Reports

Only one incident had been reported since the last meeting, involving a student in one of the Chemical and Physical Sciences labs who had cut his hand.  Incidents where students are injured in labs are reported to the Committee for information.  There have been no reports received of staff or faculty accidents or injuries since the previous JHSC meeting. 

b) Training Courses - Update

Student Housing and Residence Life, with Wei's team, had provided training for (roof and ladder) fall protection and the use of harnesses to their staff as well as caretaking staff and the engineers in Facilities Management and Planning.

c) Laboratory and Chemical Safety Training Day Update (December 13, 2010)

This event was very successful with 90 people participating.  There are several Powerpoint presentations available on request.  Wei prepared the training packages, and rolled out a program for UTM which included laboratory safety manuals for research and the undergraduate labs.  It is expected that this training will be done more than once a year. 

d) South/Davis Building Hallways - Hazards and Fire Safety (Awareness and Poster Campaign)

The posters should be available at the February meeting of the Committee.  Len will send drafts of the two posters-one about propping open doors, the other about cluttered hallways-to the Committee.  U of T Fire Prevention has also done work on the St. George campus with respect to hallways in the residences.

e) Presentation to Principal's Table (October 26, 2010)

The presentation lasted 50 minutes, significantly more than the twenty minutes allotted, and went very well.  Rubina, Len and Wei provided detailed information on the work of the Joint Health and Safety Committee, statistics on workplace injuries and illness, training initiatives, and committee priorities.

f) Indoor Air Quality - Registrar's Office, Assessment Report

Len shared the conclusions and recommendations of the assessment report with the Committee. 

g) Other hazard reports/audits:

Ergonomics Review, Early Learning Centre

This review was done because of an injury sustained by a staff member while lifting a toddler.  The recommendations were shared with the Committee, and members were told the report is available to anyone interested.  Several recommendations were based on "best practices" and design of the ELC at the St George campus.

Acoustic Assessment and Recommendations - CCT Atrium

There had been an assessment of noise levels by acoustic engineers, and a report had been issued confirming there is noise.  There are noise controls that can be put in place, at significant cost (e.g., $100,000 for noise reduction panels).  Paull's department has consulted with Conference Services (about booking space), and has looked at student programs.  One improvement was the removal of the video wall, which has decreased the noise.  Campus Police should be notified if students are practicing dance routines with radios in the Atrium; students are encouraged to use the student Centre, Dance studio in Athletics, and other bookable space on campus instead. 

h) New Workplace Inspection Checklists for Offices, Laboratories and Mechanical/Industrial areas

Under Bill 168, workplace violence is considered a hazard, which means questions need to be asked during inspections to identify and assess risks to security and personal safety.  EHS has produced a new inspection checklist incorporating these factors.  We can either adapt their form or add the sections to our forms.  Our forms have room for writing; the EHS forms do not.  The Committee was asked to think about what they prefer before the next meeting, so the forms can be finalized.   

New Business

a) Access restrictions and hallway door signs for laboratory research rooms

Research staff at the Facilities/Research Group meeting indicated they did not want people admitted to their labs.  To address this, printable signs have been developed advising that no one is to enter except in an emergency.   It is expected that these will be available in the New Year.  

b) After hours emergencies in laboratories (new signs)

In conjunction with item a) above, a sign on the inside of the lab door provides the names of three or four emergency contacts for that lab as well as a list of hazards in the lab.  It is expected that these signs will be rolled out in the New Year.   It was suggested by the Committee that these signs also be on the outside of the door, so that anyone who needs access during an emergency will know what hazards might be in the lab.

c) New database for hazards, permits and laboratory chemicals (March 2011)

Beginning March, 2011, Committee members can log into this new database and find out who has permits of certain types, where they are, and what chemicals are stored in certain rooms that might be of concern.  

d) Biosafety Cabinets Annual Certifications

There is a tri-campus committee looking at this, and Professor Tim Westwood of UTM is a member of the RFP review committee.

e) Workplace Violence and Harassment Policy - Investigation

Under Bill 168, all cases of workplace violence and harassment must be brought to the attention of the Committee.  UTM has already dealt with one case.  Four members of the Committee were involved in the investigation, which was done with involvement from Health and Safety, Human Resources, University Police and the Program on Workplace Violence.  In the end, the person's employment was terminated.  The role of the Committee, the process and procedures of the workplace violence policy, the workplace harassment policy, and the civility guideline, were discussed briefly.

Other Business/Announcements

The meeting adjourned at 10:15 a.m.

Next Meeting:

Wednesday February 16, 2011, 9:00AM, Room 3130, (Council Chambers), William G. Davis (South) Building

________________________________                          _____________________________________

Rubina Lewis, Co-chair                                                 Len Paris, Co-chair