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 Workplace Hazardous Materials Information System (WHMIS) is a nation-wide communications system that provides information about hazardous materials, which are produced, sold in, imported to, or used within workplaces.

The system has three components that provide you with information about the materials you work with, about the physical agents you are exposed to and the hazards that exist in the working environment.

  • Labels
  • Material Safety Data Sheets
  • Worker Education Programs

WHMIS was enacted federally in 1987, and has been implemented in all provinces and territories through a combination of federal and provincial legislation. (See Appendix A for complete list). In Ontario, WHMIS is a legislated requirement of the Occupational Health and Safety Act.

Because the school board is a workplace, the employer must ensure that employees are provided with information necessary to protect themselves when using hazardous products in the workplace.

Using the information provided by the WHMIS system, suppliers, employers and workers can work together to minimize the risks of hazardous materials in the workplace.