submitted by Tony Moscioni:

Last week, the Provincial government announced that it would hire 200 new enforcement staff over the next two years. It will begin immediately by recruiting 100 new inspectors -- a major expansion to the current force of 230 inspectors.

"It's a bold move, and it's the right move," said Don Dickie, Executive Vice-President and General Manager of the Construction Safety Association of Ontario (CSAO). CSAO and the construction industry's labour-management network have long advocated for more inspectors.

"Without question, increased enforcement means a decrease in death, illness, and injury in the construction industry," said Dickie.

The government's goal is to cut workplace injuries by 20% in four years by targeting workplaces with poor health and safety records. The government has identified 6,000 such firms.

The cost of the 100 new inspectors will be $14 million annually, charged to the Workplace Safety and Insurance Board (WSIB). But the government estimates that the reduction in injuries will save the WSIB about $300 million.