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Workers’ Compensation Challenges for the Mobile Workforce: Policy and Practice in Canadian Jurisdictions

Free 1 Hour
This webinar will: Present key findings from a program of research on employment-related geographical mobility E-RGM in the Canadian context looking at its impact on the effectiveness of workers' compensation legislation in a selection of Canadian provinces. Distinguish challenges that arise for different categories of workers who are injured while engaged in E-RGM, including those engaged in a long daily commute, intraprovincial and interprovincial workers and temporary foreign workers in Canada or Canadian workers engaged in work outside of Canada. Examine some of the effects of the workers' compensation process, particularly return-to-work requirements, on workers' families.

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Take-home messages:

  • Workers’ compensation is the oldest social program in Canada, providing coverage to millions of workers since the beginning of the 20th century.
  • Why is it that members of the mobile workforce are falling through the cracks? We found that many of these workers are invisible to regulators because of the mobility associated with their work, and that systems are sometimes, but not always, designed to meet their needs.

Learning Outcomes

Workers' compensation coverage issues that affect E-RGM workers and their employers
Jurisdictional issues that contribute to the complexity of the workers' compensation process
Problems that arise in the determination of benefits for E-RGM workers
Challenges related to return to work when E-RGM workers are injured
Ways in which return-to-work processes affect workers' families


Katherine Lippel
Katherine Lippel is co-investigator with the On the Move Partnership. The Partnership is a 7-year national scale research program with international links, investigating employment-related geographical mobility and its consequences for workers, families, employers, communities, and Canadian municipal, provincial and federal governments. Professor Lippel leads the policy component of the On the Move team's research program and is author of the On the Move reports on Occupational Health and Safety and Workers' Compensation. Professor Lippel holds the Canada Research Chair in Occupational Health and Safety Law and is professor of law in the Civil Law section of the Faculty of Law at the University of Ottawa. She specialises in legal issues relating to occupational health and safety and workers' compensation. She has been a member of the Québec Bar since 1978.
Dana Howse
Dana Howse is a Postdoctoral Fellow with the Centre for Research on Work Disability Policy, co-located at the SafetyNet Centre for Occupational Health and Safety Research, Memorial University and at the Canada Research Chair in Occupational Health and Safety Law, affiliated with the Faculty of Law (Civil Law Section) at the University of Ottawa. Dana's postdoctoral work is examining the ways in which disability policies and programs support and/or impede people with physical disabilities to undertake work-related travel, or 'work mobility'. Dana completed her Ph.D. in Public Health Science (Social Science and Health) in the Dalla Lana School of Public Health, University of Toronto. Her research interests include the social relations of work and health, workers' compensation and return to work, work mobility, disability policy, and critical qualitative methodology.
Barb Neis
Dr. Barb Neis is John Paton Lewis Distinguished University Professor at Memorial University of Newfoundland, Canada. Based in the Department of Sociology, she is also the Co-Director of the SafetyNet Centre for Occupational Health and Safety Research. She was co-awarded the Vanier Institute of the Family Mirabelli-Glossop Award for distinguished contribution to the work of the Vanier Institute. She is a past president of the Canadian Association for Research on Work and Health, is currently Project Director on a 7-year project called On the Move: Employment-Related Geographical Mobility in the Canadian Context, and is co-chair of the Newfoundland node of a second project, the Centre for Research on Work Disability Policy.

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