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WSIB merges labour market re-entry, return-to-work programs

By COS staff

The Ontario Workplace Safety and Insurance Board (WSIB) is making significant changes to its Labour Market Re-entry (LMR) program.

"After hearing from Ontario employers and injured workers who need help in returning to work, we will phase out the use of external LMR case managers," announced the WSIB in a statement. "Instead, qualified WSIB staff will manage injured workers’ pathways to work."

Beginning later this year, the WSIB will integrate its LMR and Return-to-Work programs into a new Work Reintegration Program. The new program will:

    * Maintain the relationship between the worker and original employer.

    * Provide direct oversight by the WSIB for all re-training services for injured workers.

    * Increase worker input and choice in their vocational goals.

    * Make greater use of Ontario’s public education system for injured worker re-training.

    * Provide workers with marketable skills and valid credentials.

The WSIB will recruit and train staff to deliver this new program. Qualified employees from the external LMR service providers will have the opportunity to participate in this recruitment, the agency said.

The goals of Work Reintegration are to help injured workers return to decent, safe and sustainable jobs and to give Ontario’s employers more support from the WSIB to retain and re-train their injured employees, according to the WSIB.

“The WSIB is committed to helping injured workers return to work, and ensuring that employers see greater accountability and results for their funding,” said WSIB president and CEO David Marshall. The WSIB said it has received early support for the new Work Reintegration approach from both employer and worker stakeholders.

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