Occupational Health and Safety Law and Regulations

Registration/Certification Maintenance Points

  • The Canadian Registration Board of Occupational Hygienists (CRBOH): 5.0 RMPs
  • The American Board of Industrial Hygiene (ABIH): 5.0 IH CMPs
  • The Board of Canadian Registered Safety Professionals (BCRSP): 5.0 CMPs

This four-day course addresses the occupational health and safety law and regulations in Atlantic Canada and of the federal jurisdictions. Using Nova Scotia's Occupational Health & Safety Act as the main focus, the course will review the main concepts or themes running through the Act and Nova Scotia's regulations. The comparable legislation from the other Atlantic Provinces, and the federal jurisdiction, will be compared and contrasted throughout the course.

This is a required course in the Certificate in Occupational Health & Safety Management.

Benefits to participants

You will learn:

  • How to read Occupational Health & Safety legislation
  • The definitions within the legislation and when they apply
  • Both subtantive and procedural aspects of Occupational Health and Safety law
  • OH&S Prosecutions and Defence issues and the role of the appeal process


To provide participants with a good understanding of occupational health & safety legislation and regulations applicable in Atlantic Canada and the federal jurisdiction. Upon completion of the course, participants should be significantly more comfortable in their use and understanding of the legislation and how it may apply in any given situation.

Who should attend

The course will be of value to Health and Safety professionals, Employers and Managers, Labour representatives, Human Resource Managers, WCB personnel, and Occupational Health Nurses and Lawyers.


Day 1 - registration/check-in will start at 8:00 a.m. with sessions to begin at 8:30 a.m. and adjourn at 4:00 p.m. Days 2-4 will commence at 8:30 a.m. and adjourn at 4:00 p.m. There will be 15 minute mid-morning and afternoon breaks. A light lunch is included. Evaluation includes a take-home quiz provided to students at the end of Day 3, to be returned at the start of Day 4.   

Course content

Day 1

8:00 Registration
  Overview of the Course
The Problem: Injury and Illness in the Workplace
Historical Overview
9:00 What is Law?
Some Legal Concepts
Canadian Legal Framework
The Structure of OH&S Law
Statutory Interpretation - Reading and understanding legislation
10:00 Internal Responsibility System
Guest Speaker: TBA
Workplace Parties
Shared Responsibilities
1:00 Other Parts of OH&S Legislation
OH&S Advisory Council
OH&S Policy and Program
OH&S Representatives
2:00 Access to/Disclosure of Information Under OH&S Legislation
Introduction to Work Refusals
3:30 Discussion - Questions and Answers

Day 2

8:30 Work Refusals (Cont'd)
Case Law
9:30 Discriminatory Action Complaints
Case Law
10:30 New Administrative Penalties
11:30 Workplace Investigations
OH&S Jurisdiction
The Offshore
Federal - Provincial
1:00 Overview of OH&S Division, NS Dept. of Labour and Advanced Education
Guest Speaker: TBA
OH&S Director - Role, Powers and Appeal Function
2:30 The Role of the WCB in Prevention
Guest Speaker: TBA
3:45 Subcontractors

Day 3

8:30 OH&S Inspections and Investigations
Guest Speaker: TBA
Role and Powers of OH&S Officers
OH&S Prosecutions
The Role of the Crown: before and after charges have been laid
The Decision to Prosecute: burden of proof, penalties and public interest issues
The Judicial Process: both regulatory and criminal
Disclosure: what, when and why
Expert witnesses: when are they required?
1:00 OH&S Prosecutions (Cont'd)
Resolution Discussions and Agreements: What are they and their limitations?
Principles of Sentencing: criminal, regulatory and structured
Appeals from conviction, acquittal or sentence
2:30 Violence in the Workplace Regulations
Duties and Responsibilities of the Employer and the Employee
3:30 Accident Case Scenario / Take home quiz
Video, discussion, and distribution of take home assignment

Day 4

8:30 Defending the Accused
Guest Speaker: TBA
Strategy, Due Diligence and Case Law
10:00 Occupational Safety General Regulations & Workplace Health and Safety Regulations
Guest Speaker: TBA

Structure, objectives, process for approval
Review of legislative amendments and new regulations
1:00 Review of Accident Case and Examination
Discussion of video and take home assignment from Day 3
4:00 Adjournment


Alex Keaveny was called to the Bar in Ontario in 2002 and in Nova Scotia in 2003. He began his career with the Ministry of the Attorney General in Toronto at the Crown Attorney’s Office (Downtown) from 2000 to 2003, first as an articled clerk, then as an Assistant Crown. In 2003, Alex returned to P.E.I. and later to Halifax where he worked in private practice until returning to prosecutions in 2005 when he joined the Public Prosecution Service (PPS) as a Crown attorney in the Halifax and Dartmouth Crown Attorney’s offices. In 2006, Alex joined the Halifax law firm, Stewart McKelvey, where he practiced civil litigation, tax litigation and regulatory defence. Alex returned to the PPS in March 2011 as a Crown Attorney in the Dartmouth office. Since July 2014 Alex has been the dedicated OH&S prosecutor with the Special Prosecutions section of the PPS, working mainly on workplace safety related prosecutions. Alex has been a lecturer at Dalhousie University since 2008, co-teaching the Civil Trial Practice course at the Schulich School of Law.

Lisa M. Gallivan is a partner in the labour and employment group at Stewart McKelvey in Halifax, Nova Scotia and was called to the bar in 1997. She advises and represents large and small public and private sector clients in federal, provincial and municipal jurisdictions and regularly represents clients in connection with collective bargaining, union certification matters, Labour Board proceedings, grievance arbitration, wrongful dismissal claims, human rights issues, occupational health and safety matters, workers’ compensation appeals and employment standards matters. She also negotiates and drafts executive employment contracts, termination agreements and other agreements pertaining to executive compensation. In addition to being an advocate and advising management clients on labour relations and employment matters, Lisa is a frequent lecturer at client seminars as well as guest speaker at programs sponsored by such groups as the Dalhousie University College of Continuing Education on municipal employment issues, the Nova Scotia Construction Safety Council and has also lectured in the Department of Business Administration at Mount Saint Vincent and Saint Mary’s University. Lisa is also a member of Brigadoon Children’s Camp Society.