New Brunswick is embarking on a three-year, multistage review of its workers’ compensation legislation. It’s the first time in more than two decades there has been a comprehensive review, said Danny Soucy, the province’s post-secondary, education, training and labour minister.
“The objective of this review is to ensure that the system appropriately addresses the needs and realities of current and future workplaces, and strikes the right balance between adequate compensation for injured workers and employers' financial interests,” said Soucy.
The first stage of the review will include a discussion paper and stakeholder consultations with a focus on the following components of the Workers' Compensation Act and the Workplace Health, Safety and Compensation Commission Act:
? the calculation of benefits under section 38.11 (9)
? the determination of the merits of introducing a dispute resolution mechanism relating to processes and procedures
? the governance structure and mandate related to the appeals tribunal.
Members of the public are invited to share their comments online. Submissions will also be accepted by fax (506-453-2148) or by regular mail at: Legislative Review of Workers’ Compensation, P.O. Box 6000, 470 York St., Fredericton, E3B 1X6.
Brian Bruce, a former law professor at the University of New Brunswick, and Ellen Barry, a former deputy minister with the provincial government, will serve as panelists for the consultation phase. They will meet with stakeholders during September to collect feedback.
The panelists will submit the information they gather to Douglas Mah, an independent consultant from Alberta with experience in workers' compensation legislation and reviews. Mah will prepare a report for late fall with recommendations on how to improve workers' compensation legislation as it relates to the first stage of the review.