New association aims to enhance safety, health in Manitoba's manufacturing workplaces

SAFE Work Manitoba has announced the launch of Made Safe, a new safety association dedicated to reducing workplace injury and illness throughout the province's manufacturing industry.
The association was established through a partnership between Canadian Manufacturers & Exporters (Manitoba) and SAFE Work Manitoba.

Made Safe will make it easier for workers and employers to implement relevant safety and health practices, and promote a stronger culture of safety in the manufacturing sector. It will provide industry-specific safety and health training for workers and assistance to employers in developing safety programs and services for their workplaces.

"Safety associations have a vital role to play in making our workplaces safer," said Minister of Labour and Immigration Erna Braun. "Congratulations to Made Safe on this move to reduce injury and illness in our province's manufacturing sector."

Manufacturing is a large employer in Manitoba, making up 18 per cent of the Workers Compensation Board's assessed payroll.

Jamie Hall, COO of SAFE Work Manitoba, is encouraged by the progress being made toward the organization's goal of seeing all Manitoba workers with access to an industry-specific safety association.

"The development of Made Safe means that many more workers and businesses will have access to training and services that will make their workplaces safer. This is our hope for all industries in our province. SAFE Work Manitoba is here to help any industry that wants to form a safety association."

Along with keeping workers safe and healthy, he added, safety associations can help businesses reduce their long-term costs. 

Each year, about 6,000 people become injured or ill while working in Manitoba’s manufacturing sector.

Neal Curry, executive director of Made Safe, says he is looking forward to helping all industry businesses enhance the safety and health of their workplaces.

"Our association will offer assistance to manufacturing companies of all sizes, providing access to new training and programs that wouldn't otherwise be available to many of these companies."

A safety council has been established, consisting of representatives from across the manufacturing industry. Members of this council will provide direction to Made Safe, which will include setting priorities, allocating a budget and determining the programs and services to be offered. The previous Agricultural Manufacturers of Canada Safety Program (funded only by the agriculture manufacturing sector) was transitioned to Canadian Manufacturers & Exporters (Manitoba) on Jan. 1.

Manitoba's Five-Year Plan for Injury and Illness Prevention calls for the development of more industry-based safety associations. Made Safe is the third safety association to be established in the province over the past year. Safety associations for the motor vehicle and trucking industries were created last May and September, respectively.