The Ontario government is launching a first-of-its-kind program to make free naloxone kits (and free training) available at workplaces where there is a risk of staff witnessing or experiencing an opioid overdose.
For up to two years, Ontario will provide free nasal spray naloxone kits to businesses at risk of opioid overdoses through the Workplace Naloxone Program and free training needed to equip staff with the tools to respond to an opioid overdose.
Businesses can determine if they are eligible for the program and find additional information on accessing naloxone kits and training at Ontario.ca/workplacenaloxone. Once the requirement is in effect, Ministry of Labour, Immigration, Training and Skills Development’s inspectors will take an education-first approach to enforcement.
Employers must provide a naloxone kit when an employer becomes aware, or ought reasonably to be aware, of the following scenarios:
There is a risk of a worker opioid overdose.
There is a risk that the worker overdoses while in a workplace where they perform work for the employer.
The risk is posed by a worker who performs work for the employer.
If any one of these scenarios are not present, an employer does not need to comply with the OHSA requirements to provide naloxone in the workplace.
The OHSA requirements do not apply to workplaces where the risk of an opioid overdose is created by a non-worker, such as a customer.
If there is no risk of a worker opioid overdose, an employer would not have to comply with the OHSA requirements.