Ontario’s workforce

As of March 31, 2022, there were about 7.4 million workers employed in Ontario. About 6.7 million of these workers worked in workplaces under provincial jurisdiction.

Traumatic fatalities

In 2021, there were a total of 341 allowed workplace fatalities recognized by the Workplace Safety Insurance Board (WSIB) health and safety statistics.footnote 1footnote 2 The numbers presented below are a snapshot of the data as of September 30, 2022.

In 2021, the sectors with the most traumatic fatalities were:

For occupational disease fatalities, the sectors with the highest incidents were:

  • Manufacturing (34%)
  • Schedule 2 firms (16%)
  • Transportation and Warehousing (10%)
  • Nursing and Residential Care Facilities and Social Assistance (10%)footnote 6

Total number of fatalities by type and year of death

Type of fatality2018201920202021
Traumatic82677184
Occupational disease207181189167

Critical injuries

Critical injuries that occur at the workplace must be reported directly to the Ministry of Labour, Immigration, Training and Skills Development. In 2021, a total of 2,387 critical injury events were reported to the ministry — 1,596 of those were in industrial, 407 were in construction, 319 were in health care and 65 were in mining sector workplaces.

Total number of critical injury events reported to the ministry

2018201920202021
2,1152,3982,0292,387

Allowed injuries

In 2021, workplaces under Schedule 1 (employers covered by collective liability) had 59,067 allowed lost-time injury claims and 88,685 allowed no lost-time injury claims. In 2021, workplaces under Schedule 2 (self-insured businesses) had 15,040 allowed lost-time injury claims and 9,493 allowed no lost-time injury claims.

Schedule 1 claims

Claim type / Claim rate2018201920202021
Total allowed lost-time injury claims50,12349,87448,63759,067footnote 7
Allowed lost-time injury rate (per 100 workers)1.031.01.091.24
Total allowed no lost-time injury claims116,390118,60683,76188,685footnote 8
Allowed no lost-time injury rate (per 100 workers)2.402.371.831.86

Schedule 2 claims

Claim type / Claim rate2018201920202021
Total allowed lost-time injury claims16,98717,05012,15115,040
Allowed lost-time injury rate (per 100 workers)2.262.261.571.89
Total allowed no lost-time injury claims15,50415,5859,5699,493
Allowed no lost-time injury rate (per 100 workers)2.062.061.231.19

Training activity

Working at Heights

As of March 31, 2022, CPO-approved training providers have trained over 1,200,000 workers. In the 2021–2022 fiscal year, over 185,000 workers completed Working at Heights training or took refresher training.

The ministry supported Working at Heights learners through COVID‑19 by granting an extension for those who were due for mandatory in-person working at heights refresher training. These learners were notified of this extension between January and June 2021. This extension covered over 130,000 learners whose training expired between February 28 and August 31, 2020. The extension was also part of the ministry’s response to COVID‑19 and helped limit person-to-person contact during this period.

Joint Health and Safety Committee Training

Training and certifications increased from the previous fiscal year. As the chart below shows, they have returned to rates similar to the 2019-2020 fiscal year before the COVID‑19 pandemic.

Status of training or certification as of March 31, 2022Total
Completed Part 118,000
Completed Part 214,000
Fully certified79,000
Completed refresher5,500

Between January to April 2022, the ministry’s Prevention Division received over 3,600 telephone enquiries from the public. More than 70% of calls related to Working at Heights, while 25% related to Joint Health and Safety Committee Training. The remaining 3% of calls related to Health and Safety Awareness Training for workers and supervisors.

Training from health and safety associations

During the COVID‑19 emergency period, Ontario’s health and safety partners also pivoted to provide training for essential services in the sectors they serve. From April 2021 through March 2022, the health and safety associations (HSAs) provided 1,040,881 participant hours of training on a variety of workplace health and safety topics. These included sector-specific training in mining, forestry, construction, transportation, electrical, agriculture, manufacturing, education and health care. Examples include:

  • hoisting and rigging
  • basic safety training
  • electrical safety-high voltage
  • chainsaw operation and maintenance
  • forestry mandatory skills training
  • cross sector awareness and mandatory training
  • training in ergonomics
  • confined space training

This number was up significantly from the prior fiscal year total of 767,641 hours of training. The increase was due to both the increased availability of post COVID‑19 emergency period virtual training offerings and the reopening of Ontario businesses in 2021–2022.

2021–2022 health and safety compliance activity

Occupational health and safety (OHS) inspectors have continued their hard work over the last year to support workplaces in being healthy, safe and compliant.

The table below shows the number of field visits ministry inspectors made in the 2021–2022 fiscal year and orders they issued. As the COVID‑19 pandemic continued throughout this year, the ministry focused proactively on both education and enforcement across a wide variety of sectors.

Number of COVID-related visitsOrders issuedNumber of visits not related to COVIDOrders issued
90,000118,00076,022 to 37,205 workplaces95,847 — includes 6,858 stop use or stop work orders

Field visits conducted by ministry inspectors include both proactive and reactive inspections and are a critical part of inspectors’ work. Proactive inspections are unannounced field visits that are conducted to increase awareness of hazards to help improve safety and prevent injuries or fatalities. In 2021-2022, 47.5% (36,073) of field visits were proactive visits. This is consistent with what we reported in the previous fiscal year. During proactive visits, inspectors issued 62,419 orders which represent 65% of all orders issued. Reactive inspections are field visits conducted to investigate a fatality, critical injury, work refusal, complaint, occupational illness or other OHS-related event in the workplace. In 2021–2022, there were 39,949 reactive field visits, where inspectors issued 33,428 orders.

For more information regarding OHS data for 2021–2022, please visit:


Footnotes

  • footnote[1] Back to paragraph This includes 84 traumatic fatalities, 167 occupational disease fatalities and 90 fatalities due to COVID‑19.
  • footnote[2] Back to paragraph Traumatic fatalities identifies all allowed claims from people who died in that year of a work-related traumatic incident. Excludes claims from people who passed away while in receipt of 100% permanent disability (PD) benefits granted under a pre-1990 legislative framework. Occupational disease fatalities identifies all allowed claims from people who died in that year of a work-related disease or condition for which entitlement to survivor benefits has been granted. Excludes claims from people who passed away while in receipt of 100% permanent disability benefits granted under a pre-1990 legislative framework. COVID‑19 fatalities identifies all allowed claims from people who died in that year for which a decision was made related to COVID‑19, where COVID‑19 is the initial nature of injury.
  • footnote[3] Back to paragraph For this report, Class G has been named “Construction”. Class G includes the following Subclasses: G1 - Building Construction; G2 - Infrastructure Construction; G3 - Foundation, Structure and Building Exterior Construction; G4 - Building Equipment Construction; G5 - Specialty Trades Construction; G1B - Residential Building Construction; G6 - Non-residential Building Construction.
  • footnote[4] Back to paragraph For this report, Class F have been named “Transportation and Warehousing”. Class F includes the following Subclasses: F1 - Rail, Water, Truck Transportation and Postal Service; F2 - Air, Transit, Ground Passenger, Recreational and Pipeline Transportation, Courier Services and Warehousing.
  • footnote[5] Back to paragraph For this report, Class E have been named “Manufacturing”. Class E includes the following Subclasses: E1 - Food, Textiles and Related Manufacturing; E2 - Non-Metallic and Mineral Manufacturing; E3 - Printing, Petroleum and Chemical Manufacturing; E4 - Metal Transportation Equipment and Furniture Manufacturing; E5 - Machinery, Electrical Equipment and Miscellaneous Manufacturing.
  • footnote[6] Back to paragraph The WSIB data is based on industry categories referred to as “class” which describes different types of workplace sectors.
  • footnote[7] Back to paragraph There was a sizable increase in total allowed lost-time injury claims from 2020 to 2021. Motor vehicle injuries (MVIs) saw the greatest increase which is also related to the increase in economic activity. MVIs relates to the trend of employment and economic indicators mostly returning to the pre-pandemic levels seen in Ontario prior to the spread of the Omicron variant. While COVID‑19 claim volume were relatively lower in the second half of 2021, WSIB saw an increase in non-COVID-19 claims which was higher than any other quarter since Q1 2020, when the pandemic began.
  • footnote[8] Back to paragraph There is a sizable decrease in total allowed no lost-time injury (NLTI) claims due to the lockdowns that took place during the height of COVID‑19 in 2021. With most offices still working from home in 2021 and with a slow return to offices, the number of NLTI claims did increase from 2020 to 2021. Overall, the NLTI claims are still lower compared to previous years.