The Health and Safety Committee is an integral part of the company's Internal Responsibility System (IRS). Its purpose is to identify hazards and make recommendations to the employer to control the risks. However, the employer is also required to keep the Committee informed of health and safety developments in the workplace.
The Joint Health and Safety Committee Observation Reporting
The JHSC inspectors typically talk to other workers and make observations. They record observations and document findings on an inspection checklist. As they inspect the workplace and work through their checklist items, they make as many general observations as possible. For instance, they will check if any new hazards haven't yet been identified. If they are, they will make a note and add them to their checklist.
Observation also allows for evaluating already implemented controls and safe work practices to determine if they are working as intended and without unintentionally creating new hazards.
Many Names, Same Purpose
Joint Health and Safety Committee, Joint Work Site Health and Safety Committee, Occupational Health Committee, Workplace Safety, and Health Committee, or Occupational Health and Safety Committee. The Committee consists of both worker and management representatives who meet regularly to deal with health and safety issues.
The advantage of having a joint committee is in:
- The collection of all in-depth practical knowledge of specific tasks with the more extensive overview of the company's policies and procedures; and
- the enhancement of cooperation among all parts of the workforce towards solving health and safety issues.
The primary responsibilities of the Joint Health and Safety Committee are:
- To meet at least once every three months;
- Post the names and work locations of every committee member for all personnel to see;
- Inspect the facilities at least once a month, or where not practical, inspect parts of the workplace at least once a month, so the entire facility is inspected yearly;
- Make written recommendations for improvement of health and safety of the personnel to the employer;
- Identify workplace hazards;
- Respond to employee complaints and suggestions about health and safety;
- Monitor and follow-up hazard reports and recommended action;
- Monitor effectiveness of safety programs and procedures;
- Consult with professional and technical experts;
- Accompany a regulator / labor inspector during their physical inspection of the workplace.
The Joint Health and Safety Committee inspection determines:
- If a hazard is present;
- Which employees are exposed or likely to be exposed; and
- Which employee has been a subject to illness or injury; and
- If established, health and safety procedures and processes are being followed.
Performing and documenting regular safety observations not only ensures a safer workplace but can also help you share best practices with other teams in the company. A powerful solution like The Checker software can help you perform the most effective observation reporting. The Checker software can be used for Joint Health and Safety inspections and can even allow you to perform observation reporting right on your phone.