Health and Safety38
Health and safety are top of mind for everyone at Bell as we continue to develop programs to address hazards and mitigate risks.
WHY IT MATTERS G R I 103
A strong focus on health and safety is essential to protect the wellbeing of team members and customers. Looking after health and safety also makes good business sense; conversely, neglecting health and safety may result in losing team members, lawsuits, increased costs and reduced profitability.
WHAT WE ARE DOING
Bell seeks to provide a safe and healthy workplace where team members come to work knowing that they are part of a team in which we all embrace safety as an integral part of the way we work, not just as an add-on. Dedication and leadership are bringing safety to the top of everyone’s mind at Bell as we continue to develop programs to address hazards and mitigate risks.
Our occupational health and safety management system at Bell aligns with the ISO 45001 standard, and all of our business units have designated health and safety coordinators. This structure seeks to ensure compliance with operational requirements and continuous reporting to the Health and Safety governance team.tagGRI:2018 403-1
Working in partnership with team members and union representatives, we have established Local Health and Safety Committees (LHSCs) as well as Corporate Health and Safety Committees (CHSCs) for our operations throughout Canada. In compliance with regulations, our LHSCs and CHSCs include representation from operational and clerical functions and meet periodically to address health and safety challenges and perform workplace inspections. The corporate Health and Safety team collaborates with these committees on the development and implementation of prevention programs. tagGRI:2018 403-4
We maintain our focus on prevention by continuously improving hazard prevention programs and assessing the company’s various functions for potential risks. We create synergies and align practices across all of Bell’s business lines, as well as evolve our health and safety programs as we welcome new Bell business divisions. tagGRI:2018 403-2
In 2021, we continued working to mitigate the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on our business. These initiatives included further development of return-to-work protocols, monitoring workplace compliance with COVID-19 measures and the deployment of ergonomic reference material and training for employees working from home.
Our overall time lost accident frequency rate in 2021 was 1.121, performance that was below the industry average (1.24). Total reportable health and safety cases decreased by 3.2% year over year.tagGRI:2018 403-9
This decrease was mainly due to more team members working from home, along with the implementation of a series of operational and mitigation measures. The operational measures included a focus on prevention plans – for example, monthly observation and inspection – as well as pre-work hazard assessments, wellness programs and extensive communications related to safe work practices. Continuing general awareness of health issues due to the COVID-19 pandemic has also helped maintain an increased level of vigilance.
Target: Report time lost accident frequency rate annually
At Bell, the health and safety of our team members has been a top priority for 142 years, and we continue to strive to prevent any work-related accidents from occurring. Regrettably, there was one fatality in 2021 due to a workplace accident. In this particular case, a Bell technician was electrocuted upon contact with a public utility's high-voltage electrical lines. Immediately following the accident, our team undertook a comprehensive review of Bell’s electrical safety program, enhanced our training program, and also retrained technicians on how to work safely near electrical lines. While Employment and Social Development Canada (ESDC) has not yet completed its investigation, they have advised that they are satisfied with our plan.
For detailed information on our health and safety programs, see the Health and Safety information sheet on our website.