B.C. Matthews Hall
University of Waterloo
200 University Ave. West
Waterloo, Ontario, Canada N2L 3G1
519-888-4567, ext. 45513
March 9, 2015
Hilton Toronto Airport Hotel & Suites, Mississauga
Case study presentations:
- Kitchener-Wilmot Hydro (VIDEO)
- Southlake Residential Care Village (VIDEO)
- BlackBerry (VIDEO)
- Horizon Plastics International (VIDEO)
- Ontario Power Generation (VIDEO)
- Maple Leaf Foods (VIDEO)
This conference attracted a diverse group of stakeholders including labour, human resources, health & safety system and ergonomics consultants, and sectors including manufacturing, transportation, health care, retail, energy, technology, automotive, education and government at the provincial and regional/city level. The conference provided a range of opportunities for profiling successful practices in Musculoskeletal Disorder (MSD) prevention. The format of the conference encouraged participants to network, share MSD prevention experiences and problem solve.
Dr. Jodi Oakman from La Trobe University in Australia kicked the conference off with a keynote emphasizing the contributory effect to MSD of both the better known physical factors and the less well addressed work psychosocial factors, such as work organization, workplace support and communication with managers.
Inspiring strategies in MSD prevention were jointly presented by front line employees and management from a wide range of sectors and organizations: Kitchener-Wilmot Hydro, Southlake Residential Care Village, BlackBerry, Horizon Plastics International, Ontario Power Generation and Maple Leaf Foods.
After lunch, a model of Workplace Safety Improvement was highlighted by Lynda Robson from the Institute for Work & Health, which outlined factors common to companies undergoing organizational change that resulted in injury and MSD reductions.
The conference then brought the pieces together by engaging participants in small groups to focus on their challenges and successful interventions in the three key theme areas of culture and leadership; process, tools and interventions; and training.
The conference themes and presentations resonated with the over 100 attendees and prompted them to think and act differently as evidenced by some of the post conference evaluation comments:
…this conference has made me realize and address the impact MSD have on the individual's productivity, functionality and quality of life.
We need to start tracking and measuring our changes better.
...the sitting issue prompting me and colleagues to design a physical activity break schedule/club at [the] workplace.