Self-Employed Persons - Safety Responsibilities
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Everyone has a role to play in keeping a workplace safe and healthy. Self-employed persons are required to work safely, whether working alone, as part of a crew, or when contracted by another person or employer to carry out a task. An employer who contracts out a task to a self-employed person must ensure the self-employed person knows their responsibilities and follows the workplace safety legislation.
Self-employed persons dutiesThe Occupational Health and Safety Act’s purpose is to protect workers and self-employed persons from risks to their physical safety and psychological well-being arising out of, or in connection with, activities at their workplaces.
Self-employed persons are not exempt from the requirements of the Act and regulations. These duties mean that a self-employed person must work in way that protects their own health and safety, as well as making sure their work is not a hazard for others. Where the Act and regulations require the use of specific equipment or personal protective equipment, or where there is a requirement for training, a self-employed person must also follow these requirements.
Any duties that are required of an employer or worker in the regulations are also required of the self-employed person. A self-employed person has the responsibility to:
- Take every reasonable precaution to protect their own health and safety and that of others who may be affected by their activities.
- Cooperate with an employer and a joint occupational safety and health (JOSH) committee or representative where they work.
- Cooperate with any person performing a duty or exercising a power established by the Act or regulations.
- Comply with the Act and regulations.
When an employer hires or contracts a task to a self-employed person, they should make sure that the self-employed person knows their responsibilities and follows the legislation.
If the self-employed person is considered a constructor or contractor , similar responsibilities are required. It is recommended that the responsibilities be clearly set out in a contract or other agreement before the self-employed person begins their work.
Part 1 DEFINITIONS AND APPLICATION
Section 1.8 Self-employed person
1.8 A duty or requirement that is imposed on an employer or a worker under these regulations applies to a self-employed person, with such modifications as the circumstances require.
[EC2004-632, s. 2]
OCCUPATIONAL HEALTH AND SAFETY ACT
R.S.P.E.I. 1988, c. O-1.01
Section 1 Definitions
1. In this Act
(a) "Board" means the Workers Compensation Board continued under the Workers Compensation Act R.S.P.E.I. 1988, Cap. W-7.1;
(b) "committee" means a joint occupational health and safety committee established under section 25;
(c) "construction" includes building, erection, excavation, alteration, repair, renovation, dismantling, demolition, structural maintenance, painting, moving, land clearing, earth moving, grading, street and highway building, concreting, equipment installation and alteration and the structural installation of construction components and materials in any form or for any purpose, and any work in connection therewith;
(d) "constructor" means a person who contracts to do work on a project for an owner or who undertakes work on a project as an owner;
(e) "contractor" means a person who contracts for work to be performed at the workplace of the person contracting to have the work performed, but does not include a constructor;
(f) "Council" means the Occupational Health and Safety Advisory Council continued under subsection 22(1);
(g) "Director" means the Director of Occupational Health and Safety appointed under section 5 or any person designated by the Director under subsection 6(2) to act on behalf of the Director;
(h) "employer" means a person who employs one or more workers or contracts for the services of one or more workers, and includes a constructor or contractor;
(i) "former Act" means the Occupational Health and Safety Act R.S.P.E.I. 1988, Cap. O-1;
(j) "medical examination" means a medical examination conducted by a medical practitioner;
(k) "Minister" means the Minister appointed by the Lieutenant Governor in Council to administer this Act;
(l) "occupational disease" means an occupational disease as defined in the Workers Compensation Act ;
(m) "officer" means an occupational health and safety officer appointed under subsection 5(2) and includes the Director;
(n) "owner" includes
(i) a trustee, receiver, mortgagee in possession, tenant, lessee or occupier of lands or premises used or to be used as a workplace, and
(ii) a person who acts for or on behalf of a person referred to in subclause (i) as that person's agent or delegate;
(o) "policy" means an occupational health and safety policy made under this Act;
(p) "program" means an occupational health and safety program required under this Act, unless the context otherwise requires;
(q) "project" means a construction project, and includes
(i) the construction, erection, excavation, renovation, repair, alteration or demolition of a structure, building or tunnel and the preparatory work of land clearing or earth moving, and
(ii) work of any nature or kind designated by the Director as a project;
(r) "protective equipment" means a piece of equipment or clothing designed to be used to protect the occupational health or safety of a worker;
(s) "regularly employed" includes seasonal employment with a recurring period of employment that exceeds 12 weeks;
(t) "representative" means an occupational health and safety representative selected under section 26;
(u) "self-employed person" means a person who is engaged in an occupation on that person's own behalf;
(v) "supplier" means a person who manufactures, supplies, sells, leases, distributes or installs any item, device, material, equipment or machinery or a biological, physical or chemical agent to be used by a worker;
(w) "Supreme Court" Repealed. [S.P.E.I. 2008, c. 20, s. 72]
(x) "worker" means
(i) a person employed in a workplace,
(ii) a person in a workplace for any purpose in connection therewith;
(y) "workplace" means a place where a worker is or is likely to be engaged in an occupation and includes a vehicle, fishing vessel or mobile equipment used or likely to be used by a worker in an occupation.
[S.P.E.I. 2008, c. 20, s. 72]
Section 2 Purpose of Act
2. The purpose of this Act is to secure workers and self-employed persons from risks to their safety, health and physical or psychological well-being arising out of, or in connection with, activities in their workplaces.
[S.P.E.I. 2018, c. 45, s. 1]
Section 13 Duties of constructor
13. A constructor shall ensure
(a) that every reasonable precaution is taken to protect the occupational health and safety of persons at or near a project;
(b) that the activities of the employers and self-employed persons at the project are co-ordinated;
(c) that the communication of information necessary to the occupational health and safety of persons at the project occurs between the employers and self-employed persons at the project;
(d) that communication is facilitated between the constructor and a committee or representative required by this Act for the project;
(e) that the measures and procedures in this Act and the regulations are carried out at the project; and
(f) that every worker, self-employed person and employer performing work in respect of the project complies with this Act and the regulations.
Section 14 Duties of contractor
14. A contractor shall ensure
(a) that every reasonable precaution is taken to protect the occupational health and safety of persons at or near a workplace;
(b) that the activities of the employers and self-employed persons at the workplace are co-ordinated;
(c) that the communication of information necessary to the occupational health and safety of persons at the workplace occurs between the employers and self-employed persons at the workplace;
(d) that the measures and procedures in this Act and the regulations are carried out at the workplace; and
(e) that every worker, self-employed person and employer performing work at the workplace complies with this Act and the regulations.
Section 17 Duties of self-employed person
17. A self-employed person shall
(a) take every reasonable precaution to protect the self-employed person's own occupational health and safety and that of other persons who may be affected by the self-employed person's undertaking;
(b) cooperate with an employer, a committee or representative, if any, at a place at which the self-employed person conducts an undertaking, to protect the self-employed person's own occupational health and safety and that of other persons who may be affected by the undertaking;
(c) cooperate with any person performing a duty or exercising a power conferred by this Act or the regulations; and
(d) comply with this Act and the regulations.