Board appointed to govern new provincial OH&S Organization

News and Media Centre  SWITCH BC News  

February 2021

Provincial Framework on OH&S in Health Care Working Group Joint Communication.

A Board of Directors has been appointed to govern a new provincial occupational health and safety (OH&S) organization that will develop a provincial framework, systems and programs aimed at improving workplace health and safety across the BC health care sector.

The creation of the organization was recommended by the joint union-employer Provincial Framework on Occupational Health and Safety in Health Care Working Group (Working Group), which was established by the 2019-2022 provincial health sector collective agreements and the Physician Master Agreement. In December 2019, the Ministry of Health announced a commitment of $8.5 million over three years to fund the establishment and operation of the provincial organization, which will be governed by a Board made up of the following:

  • Six Employer Directors appointed by Health Employers Association of BC (HEABC)
  • Six Worker Directors appointed by the six health sector bargaining associations:
    o Ambulance Paramedics and Ambulance Dispatchers Bargaining Association (APADBA)
    o Community Bargaining Association (CBA)
    o Facilities Bargaining Association (FBA)
    o Health Science Professionals’ Bargaining Association (HSPBA)
    o Nurses’ Bargaining Association (NBA)
    o Resident Doctors of BC (RDBC)
  • One Director appointed by Doctors of BC
  • Two non-voting Observers appointed by the Ministry of Health (MoH) and WorkSafeBC
  • One non-voting Independent Chair

The Board appointments are as follows

Employer Directors (appointed by HEABC):

  • Cameron Brine, Vice President, Employee Experience, Fraser Health
  • Claire Brown, Vice President, Corporate Services, Provincial Health Services Authority
  • James Hanson, Vice President Clinical Operations, Central and North, Island Health
  • Karen (Baillie) Biggs, Chief Executive Officer, Menno Place
  • Dr. Shallen Letwin, Vice President, Clinical Operations, Interior Health
  • Dr. Stacy Sprague, Executive Director, Employee Safety Health & Wellness, Vancouver Coastal Health

Worker Directors (appointed by health sector bargaining associations):

  • APADBA: Corey Froese, Provincial Director of Safety, Ambulance Paramedics of BC
  • CBA: Brent Camilleri, Coordinator, Negotiations, BC Government and Service Employees’ Union
  • FBA: Lynn Bueckert, Assistant Secretary-Business Manager, Hospital Employees’ Union
  • HSPBA: Jeanne Meyers, Executive Director Legal Services & Labour Relations, Health Sciences
  • NBA: Moninder Singh, Director, Occupational Health & Safety, BC Nurses’ Union
  • RDBC: Harry Gray, Executive Director, Resident Doctors of BC

Doctors of BC appointment:

  • Rob Hulyk, Director of Physician Advocacy, Doctors of BC

Board Observers (non-voting):

  • Ministry of Health: Evan Howatson, Executive Director, Labour and Agreements Branch
  • WorkSafeBC: Chris Back, Director, OH&S Consultation and Education Services

The Working Group is currently working to select an independent Board Chair.

Next Steps

The Working Group is in the process of incorporating the provincial OH&S organization as a non-profit society under the Societies Act. Once established, the Board will conduct a search and hire a Chief Executive Officer. The CEO, in consultation with the Board, will determine the staff structure and infrastructure of the organization.

With more than 100,000 employees in hundreds of health care workplaces across BC, stakeholder engagement in health and safety systems and collaboration on addressing workplace hazards will be core elements of the new organization’s work. The Board will look for opportunities to enhance the effectiveness of all aspects of health sector health and safety and injury reduction.