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Do Students Hired for Summer Jobs Need Special Safety Training? – Ask The Expert

Safety orientation training for new and young workers is either a legal requirement or best practice.


We’re hiring college students (20-years-old or older) to work at our plant this summer. Do we have to provide them any special safety training before they start?




First and foremost, you must provide not just young but all new workers training necessary to ensure they can do their assigned jobs safely. In addition, the OHS laws of most jurisdictions also require employers to provide special safety orientation to new and young workers before they start their employment. Such training is also highly advisable as a best practice in the jurisdictions where it’s not expressly required (all but FED, AB, NS, PEI, QC). While rules vary slightly from place to place, new and young worker safety orientation should cover, at a minimum:

  • The name of and contact information for the new/young worker’s supervisor;
  • Contact information for the workplace JHSC or health and safety representative, if any;
  • The employer’s and young/new worker’s OHS duties and rights, including reporting unsafe conditions and refusing unsafe work;
  • Workplace health and safety rules;
  • Hazards to which the new/young worker may be exposed;
  • Proper use of any PPE required;
  • The location of first aid facilities and method of calling for help;
  • Fire and emergency procedures; and
  • Required WHMIS information.

Also be sure to keep written records documenting that you provided the required training and, importantly, took steps to verify that trainees understood and demonstrated that they were capable of applying it on the job, e.g., by passing a test or demonstrating what they learned.