February Health and Safety

For the past couple years, CTA released officers have had a number of people talk to us about the temperatures in schools. We have seen teachers say their thermostats are between 10 to 29 degrees in their rooms. Without a doubt, indoor air quality is both a health and safety hazard as well as learning condition in the classroom. Indoor air quality complaints can also range from mould to dust and should be taken seriously. According to the Occupational Health and Safety Regulations – Section 4.80 Temperature and humidity, “The employer must ensure that temperature and humidity levels within the indoor work environment are maintained within acceptable comfort ranges, as far as is practicable.”

So when should the JOHS Committee investigate?

The employer must ensure that the indoor air quality is investigated when:

(a) complaints are reported,
(b) occupancy in the space changes substantially, or
(c) renovations involving significant changes to the ventilation system occur.

Finally, it is important that a record of the complaint, the findings of the investigation, and any actions taken must be documented by the site-based JOHS committee. We encourage all members to talk to your JOHS committee about all health and safety concerns. Once documented, the CTA Released Officers will be able to communicate concerns directly at the District level.