Health & Safety

The Right to Refuse Unsafe Work

Article 33.13 of the Collective Agreement provides us with the right to refuse unsafe work. If a member honestly believes that their safety is at risk, or that the work they are doing may endanger someone else’s safety, they may exercise this right by stating to their supervisor“I am exercising my right to refuse this work under Article 33.13 of the Collective Agreement”. A supervisor may not issue a direct order to perform unsafe work.

The following is a summary of the requirements of this Article:
  • The supervisor and Union Representative must be informed of the refusal without delay.
  • A member exercising this right will not suffer any lost wages.
  • Neither the worker, nor any other worker, will be permitted to perform the duties giving rise to the complaint until an investigation has been completed.
  • As soon as the Corporation is made aware of the complaint it must conduct an investigation.
  • The member making the complaint and the Union Representative are entitled to be present during the investigation.
  • A member may be temporarily assigned to perform another similar job until such time as the situation is corrected, providing that the reassignment does not violate other provisions of the Collective Agreement.
  • A worker may not be disciplined for exercising their right to refuse, unless it can be established that they, for frivolous reasons, sought to dishonestly take advantage of this clause.


The STDP kit can be printed from Intrapost or provided by Canada Post. The included forms must be submitted within 16 days of application.

Once notified, Canada Post will provide the member with Canada Life’s number to arrange for a telephone appointment with a case manager. If the member does not call, the case manager will call the member within 48 hours.

Here are things to keep in mind as you start the process Short Term Disability:
  • Keep copies of everything;
  • Keep notes of discussions with your Case Manager;
  • Sign a release allowing for the Union to be involved your case right from the beginning;
  • Be aware of the importance of meeting time limits;
  • Be aware a demand for re-payment is the possible


If a member is injured at work, they should:
  • Report the accident or occupational disease to their supervisor. Tell them that it is a workplace injury.
  • Report the injury to your Local Health and Safety Representative(union).
  • Get first aid and medical attention immediately.
  • Tell the person treating you that it is a workplace injury.
  • Request union representation (Health and Safety Representative) for the Accident Investigation.