WorkSafeBC issue health & safety orders after inspection of North Fraser Pre-Trial Centre

Following discussions with representatives from the British Columbia Government and Service Employees' Union (BCGEU/NUPGE) inspectors found non-compliance of health and safety issues at North Fraser Pre-Trial Centre (NFPC).

Vancouver (8 May 2013) - A WorkSafeBC (WCB) inspection of the North Fraser Pre-Trial Centre (NFPC) has resulted in nine orders being written. 

Inspectors found the NFPC was in non-compliance with health and safety regulations in a number of areas.

The inspectors find areas of concern

The orders include:

  • the employer must conduct a risk assessment for the living units and must address specific safety concerns brought forward by staff who work on living units
  • OC spray must be provided to all living unit officers as the current policy of not providing OC to staff working the living units fails to ensure the risk to staff from inmate violence is minimized
  • incident investigation reports must clearly identify unsafe conditions/acts/procedures and recommend corrective actions
  • the Joint Health and Safety Committee (JHSC) must be properly maintained
  • the worker co-chair of the JHSC must be provided with the necessary time off from work
  • the employer must provide the JHSC with follow-up reports of corrective actions
  • pod control officers must receive effective training on the Digital Video Monitoring System
  • first aid treatment must be prompt and maintain confidentiality, and
  • develop and implement procedures for the selection, use, inspection, cleaning, maintenance and storage of respirators.

Find the full WCB NFPC inspection report here.

Inspection result of concerns brought forward by BCGEU/NUPGE

Representatives of the British Columbia Government and Service Employees' Union (BCGEU/NUPGE) have been engaged in ongoing meetings with the WCB representatives to discuss violence inside BC’s nine provincial jails. Concerns raised include:

  • Direct supervision model and officer/inmate ratios as risk factors in the violence prevention risk assessments;
  • Single Corrections Officer hospital escorts;
  • OC spray as personal protection equipment;
  • Egress routes and Living Unit Officer Stations, and
  • The formation of a tripartite committee (the union, the employer, the WCB) to examine health and safety issues in corrections.

Inspections to be conducted at remaining institutions in the province

WCB inspectors will be conducting a detailed examination of OH&S documents at each correctional centre. They are also meeting with Corrections Officers at each facility.

The provinces' remaining five correctional centres will be inspected in the next few months.


The National Union of Public and General Employees (NUPGE) is one of Canada's largest labour organizations with over 340,000 members. Our mission is to improve the lives of working families and to build a stronger Canada by ensuring our common wealth is used for the common good. NUPGE

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