Government launches national young worker safety video contest

Ontario is joining the federal government, and all provinces and territories, to launch the first national video contest for young people on workplace safety and fairness, the Ministry of Labour announced.
The It’s Your Job contest invites contestants to submit a video of up to two minutes on any topic related to awareness about workplace health and safety, or employment standards. The contest opened for submissions Feb. 1, 2013.

With cash prizes of up to $3,000, the contest challenges secondary school students and those between ages 18-24 who are out of secondary school to speak out and raise awareness about workplace rights and responsibilities.

The 18-24 category is open to Canadians in all provinces and territories, and will be held nationally. Secondary school students will compete within their own province or territory. Winning videos from the secondary school contests will then compete against others across Canada. A panel of celebrity judges will select the top winners, a Ministry of Labour said.

The top videos from all provinces and territories will be viewed by Canadians online in May 2013, when everyone will have an opportunity to vote for their favourite.

Protecting workers on the job is part of Ontario’s continued commitment to preventing workplace injuries through its Safe At Work Ontario strategy, while creating jobs.

Each year, more than 6,200 young workers across Ontario are injured seriously enough to need time off work; that’s at least 17 Ontario youth a day who are injured, according to the Ministry of Labour. Workers new to their job, including young workers, are four times more likely to be injured during the first month on the job than more experienced workers.

Statistics are improving, however, according to the ministry. The number of lost-time injuries for young workers — those under 25 years old — in Ontario has dropped significantly over the years, from 13,254 in 2004 to 6,205 in 2011 at provincially regulated workplaces.

Find out more about the “It’s Your Job” video contest.