4 Topics Ontario Employers Must Provide Training On

Every organization’s training needs are unique. But in Ontario, almost all workplaces are legally required to provide these four types of training to all employees:

1. Accessibility for Ontarians with Disabilities Act (AODA)
2. Workplace Hazardous Materials Information System (WHMIS)
3. Worker/Supervisor Health and Safety Awareness
4. Workplace Violence and Harassment

Here’s an overview of training requirements in Ontario and why they’re mandatory.


In Ontario, 2.6 million people have a disability and face accessibility challenges in everyday life. In 2005, the Ontario government passed the Accessibility for Ontarians with Disabilities Act (AODA).

The purpose of AODA is to achieve accessibility for Ontarians with disabilities with respect to goods, services, facilities, accommodation, employment, buildings, structures and premises. This legislation made AODA training mandatory for all employers and employees in Ontario.

AODA training educates employees about:

  • The purpose of AODA, including details about its standards and the benefits they offer Ontarians
  • How to interact with people with various types of disabilities

Free AODA Training


WHMIS stands for Workplace Hazardous Materials Information System. The system is designed to provide information on how to safely use, handle, and store hazardous materials.

  • WHMIS training is mandatory for all employees who work with or are exposed to hazardous substances.
  • Because hazardous substances can range from cleaning products, to paint, to gasoline, almost all employees require WHMIS training.

WHMIS Training

Worker or Supervisor Health and Safety Awareness

Workplaces in Ontario covered under the Occupational Health and Safety Act (OHSA) must provide basic occupational health and safety awareness training to all employees and supervisors. 

  • Worker Awareness Training is required for all employees. The training provides information about their rights and responsibilities and the importance of safety in the workplace.
  • Supervisor Competency Training is required for all supervisors. The training provides information on employee rights and responsibilities as well as additional health and safety responsibilities of supervisors.

Worker Awareness Training Supervisor Competency Training

Workplace Violence and Harassment

A 2021 survey of Canadians revealed that 71% of respondents had experienced workplace harassment in the past year. 

In Ontario, employers, supervisors, and employees all have responsibilities with respect to workplace violence and harassment. The OHSA states that employers are responsible for:

  • Developing and enforcing a workplace violence and harassment policy.
  • Providing training to employees on the contents of the policy.
  • Training supervisors on how to follow up on incidents and complaints.

Employers or supervisors also have responsibilities to prevent and address harassment prohibited under Ontario’s Human Rights Code

Workplace Violence & Harassment Training

Other Training Requirements

Your workplace may have additional training requirements depending on the organization and nature of the work. Here are some other types of training commonly required in Ontario workplaces:

Joint Health & Safety Committee (JHSC) Training

Joint Health & Safety Committees (JHSC) help raise awareness of health and safety issues and make recommendations to the employer on ways to improve workplace health and safety. 

These JHSC requirements apply to all workplaces in Ontario covered under the OHSA, including those with remote and hybrid work environments:

  • Organizations with 20 or more employees need to have at least two JHSC members (one worker employee and one management) who have completed their JHSC Certification.
  • Organizations with more than 50 employees need at least two certified members (one worker employee and one management) and at least two additional members.
  • To stay certified, members need to complete JHSC Refresher Training every three years.

Workplace-Specific Training

Depending on the work your employees perform, you may need to provide job or hazard-specific training. The OHSA requires employees who operate a vehicle or powered machine, tool or equipment to be competent and understand safe operating procedures.

Examples of workplace-specific training are:

It’s recommended that you renew hazard-specific training every three years. For Working At Heights certifications, refresher training must be completed every three years to maintain certification.

First Aid Training

Workplaces covered by the Workplace Safety & Insurance Act must have at least one employee on-site at all times that has a valid first aid certification.

  • Workplaces with five or fewer people working on any shift must have at least one person present with an Emergency First Aid Certificate.
  • Workplaces with six or more people working on any shift must have at least one person present with a Standard First Aid Certificate.
      • Standard First Aid training covers the same areas as Emergency First Aid training and covers additional topics such as spine and head injuries, wound care, environmental or sudden medical emergencies, joint, muscle, and bone injuries, and poisoning.
  • First Aid certifications must be renewed every three years

How to Meet Training Requirements
Providing effective training helps keep your workplace compliant and helps prevent injuries, discrimination, and harassment.

To make sure your organization continues to meet training requirements, make sure you have records of training that employees have completed and keep training up to date (so certifications don’t expire).

Learn more about our Online Health and Safety Management System can help you assign and manage employee training.

Contact Us Begin Your Free Trial