WHMIS (Workplace Hazardous Material Information System)

WHMIS symbol, Local 1611 members

This is the recognized Workplace Hazardous Material Information System (WHMIS) logo across Canada.

The Workplace Hazardous Materials Information System (WHMIS), is Canada’s hazard communication standard.The key elements of the system are hazard classification, cautionary labeling of containers, the provision of (material) safety data sheets (MSDSs), and worker education programs.

Each provincial, territorial and federal agencies responsible for occupational health and safety has established employer WHMIS requirements within their respective jurisdictions. The Labour Program at Employment and Social Development Canada is responsible for workplaces under federal jurisdiction. These requirements place an onus on employers to ensure that controlled or hazardous products used, stored, handled or disposed of in the workplace are properly labelled, material safety data sheets are made available to workers, and workers receive education and training to ensure the safe storage, handling and use of these products in the workplace. Therefore, WHMIS certification is a mandatory requirement on all jobsites. All Local 1611 members must have a current WHMIS certificate.

For can find further information regarding WHMIS on the: Health Canada Workplace Hazardous Materials Information Handling website.

NOTICE: Transitioning from WHMIS 1988 to WHMIS 2015

To allow time for suppliers, employers and workers to adjust to the new WHMIS 2015 requirements, a multi-year transition plan is in effect.

Until May 31, 2017 suppliers can use either WHMIS 1988 or 2015 to classify and communicate the hazards of their products. As such, during the transition period, you may receive hazardous products that follow either WHMIS 1988 or WHMIS 2015 requirements.

For this reason it is necessary for workers to be educated in both systems. Education and training on the “old” WHMIS 1988 system will be necessary for as long as workplace products have “old” WHMIS style labels. This situation will exist until the transition to WHMIS 2015 is complete. You can find the 2015 WHMIS study guide and exam at 2015 WHMIS or call our Training Plus office if you have any questions at (604) 538-5101.