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Mentorship important for career development

‘Find someone that you can make a connection with and that you find very easy to learn from,’ says Women in Safety speaker When Anne Guinard was first starting out as a young safety professional at Imperial Oil in Calgary, she found an excellent mentor in Dave Fennell, who was the senior safety advisor at

Authentic leadership style needed for advancement

Women need to figure out their 'superpowers,' says Women in Safety speaker   To help female safety professionals climb the ranks into leadership positions, Johanna Pagonis suggests they focus on developing a personal and authentic leadership style. “An authentic leadership style is like finding that right pair of jeans — one that fits well and

Layered approach required for workplace mental health

Leaders must receive additional training due to their organizational influence, says Women in Safety speaker Occupational health and safety professionals need to get involved in the mental health of their workforce — it can’t just be left to human resources. “One of the most important things that we can do in an organization to help

Women face many gender-specific OHS risks

Experiencing more workplace violence, musculoskeletal disorders, says Women in Safety speaker While women and men face many of the same occupational health and safety risks on the job, there are some significant differences that safety professionals need to take into account. For example, certain chemicals are known to affect a woman’s reproductive health and women

Women must ‘claim their achievements’ at work

Particularly important for women in male-dominated industries, says Women in Safety speaker No matter what industry they find themselves in, women face many barriers when trying to advance their careers. Fortunately, they can control or influence almost all of them, according to Paula Campkin, vice-president and chief safety officer for Energy Safety Canada in Calgary

Is your organization actively caring?

All levels must go to great lengths to ensure the well-being, safety of others Do you care about safety? How could you possibly answer anything but “Of course I do!”? The fact that you are reading an article in COS is a good indication that you care enough to continue to learn more about safety.

Median ROI for mental health programs can add up to $2.18 for every dollar spent: report

'There's both an economic and moral imperative for employers to take action' Canadian companies that invest in mental health programs can see a median yearly return on investment (ROI) of $2.18 for every dollar spent, according to a new report. In looking at three years’ worth of historical data from seven organizations, Deloitte Canada found

Working more than 40 hours a week increases risk of miscarriage: Study

Pregnant women who work night shifts also face greater risk of complications Pregnant women who work more than 40 hours per week or who work the night shift face an increased risk for preterm delivery and miscarriage, according to a recent University of Alberta study. Researchers reviewed 62 independent studies from 33 countries and found

A strong brand can build your influence

Authenticity, consistency key elements to driving change Safety practitioners need to consciously build their brand to gain sufficient non-hierarchical influence to drive change. Building a brand takes time, and establishing credibility with a growing audience requires real effort and focus. You will need to be seen as a savvy collaborator and it works like this:

Workplace harassment experienced by 1 in 5 women: StatsCan

Ranges from disrespect to sexual assault Harassment and abuse on the job continue to plague many Canadian workplaces, according to a Statistics Canada study. Almost one-fifth (19 per cent) of women and 13 per cent of men reported they suffered some form of harassment in the past year, according to Harassment in Canadian Workplaces. The

Workers suffering from increased stress, isolation at work: Survey

'Organizations have evolved to prioritize employee well-being and management of workplace stress, yet reports of stress continue to increase' Workplace stress is on the rise and employees are feeling the pressure, according to a a survey by Morneau Shepell. More than one-third of employees said they are more stressed now from work (35 per cent)

Rae Ann Aldridge wins 2018 Safety Leader of the Year award

Thanks to her hard work, the University of Calgary is the only post-secondary institution with COR for its entire operation After receiving her undergraduate degree in chemical engineering, Rae Ann Aldridge’s first job was writing material safety data sheets at a consulting firm. About one month in, her manager asked her to help out in

Workers exposed to chemotherapy drugs at increased risk for cancer, organ damage, reproductive issues

Nurses, pharmacists and housekeeping staff all must be aware of this toxic hazard Over the past year, the Alberta Union of Provincial Employees (AUPE) has received 150 complaints from its members about exposure to one of the most toxic classes of chemical agents used in health care. Cytotoxic drugs, also known as antineoplastic drugs, have

Women’s group aiming to boost gender representation in safety profession

Mentorship program will help women support each other's career development Paula Campkin knows what it’s like to be the odd woman out. As the vice-president and chief safety officer for Energy Safety Canada, she is one of the few women at the C-suite level. Throughout her career, she has attended many meetings where she was

Higher education can enhance career advancement

Options range from leadership development programs to PhD Professionals know the only way to keep up in the ever-changing world of work is to be a committed lifelong learner. Lifelong learners inevitably are led to higher education, which refers to all the educational options available after high school. It includes all formalized certificates, diplomas and

The changing role of the safety professional

Which type of safety advisor are you? Today’s business environment demands agility from safety professionals to be successful. It’s agility that allows for the proper and effective response to change and turns adversities into opportunities. Historically, the role of the safety advisor was to “police” the workplace and drive compliance to the legislation and the

Don’t just shrink it and pink it

Many women in hazardous jobs still wear ill-fitting safety gear made for men When Amy Charette, a journeyperson welder, was just starting out in the late 1990s and needed to buy her own personal protective equipment (PPE), she had a hard time finding PPE that fit her properly. As a woman in the trades, she

Breathing for 2

Without proper respiratory protection, moms-to-be face risks of birth defects, complications When Meredith Corman worked at a medical marijuana processing plant in Flin Flon, Man., a few years ago, she wore a surgical mask to keep dried plant particles from entering her lungs. When she became pregnant, she and her employer stepped up the respiratory

A variety of career paths exist for OHS professionals

Many people go into occupational health and safety because it is a rewarding career — implementing processes and procedures that can save lives. But they may not realize it also has many opportunities for variety and professional advancement. Industries OHS professionals can have varied career paths just based on the wide range of industries that

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