Health Canada is launching a consultation that begins the process of applying the Globally Harmonized System of Classification and Labelling of Chemicals (GHS) for workplace chemicals in Canada.
Chemicals used in the workplace are produced and sold around the world. These products often have different label information depending on the safety rules in place where they are produced and sold, Health Canada said. The purpose of the GHS for workplace chemicals is to promote both workplace safety and international trade by applying definitions and safety information requirements that are globally accepted.
“For workers, applying the GHS would make it easier to understand and reduce their exposure to hazardous materials in the workplace. For employers, it would mean a safer workplace and simpler rules for compliance,” said Minister of Health Leona Aglukkaq. “For producers, it would mean reduced barriers to selling their products in Canada and the United States and other countries where the GHS is applied.”
Health Canada and the United States Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) recently signed a memorandum of understanding, which allows OSHA and Health Canada to collaborate on implementing the GHS in their respective jurisdictions, as well as any future developments of the GHS.
Information about the proposed regulatory changes is available on the Health Canada website. Requests to obtain a copy of the proposed regulations can be made by email to
Following this consultation, Health Canada says it intends to publish a formal regulatory proposal in the
Canada Gazette, Part I,
for broader public comment.