Health Canada Launches Consultation on GHS Implementation

July 5, 2013

Canada: The Minister of Health, the Honourable Leona Aglukkaq, announced that Health Canada will begin consultation regarding the application of the Globally Harmonized System of Classification and Labeling of Chemicals (GHS) for workplace chemicals.

With support from the United States Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA), GHS is designed to promote workplace safety as well as inspire international trade by clearly defining safety information for workplace chemicals using the global standard. OSHA and Health Canada have recently signed a Memorandum of Understanding, allowing for respective jurisdictions to apply the GHS, as well as promoting future GHS developments.

"This important initiative delivers on a Canada-United States Regulatory Cooperation Council commitment. For workers, applying the GHS would make it easier to understand and reduce their exposure to hazardous materialss in the workplace. For employers it would mean a safer workplace and simpler rules for compliance," stated Aglukkaq.

With the implementation of GHS, chemicals that often feature different label information required by different countries, will be more consistently presented using the harmonized classification and labeling system under the GHS. This system utilizes harmonized , including signal words, hazard pictograms, hazard statements, and precautionary statements. As well, the initiative will usher in the requirement to have a , (16 section safety data sheet), with prescribed headings for sections 1 through 16, and prescribed information requirements under the various sections.

Original press release on the consultation.


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