USW-Forest Industry Safety Health and Research Program (SHARP)
The United Steel Workers (USW) and Forest Industry "Safety Health and Research Program", (SHARP), evolved from collective bargaining between the former IWA, now USW Locals 1-424 and 1-425 and the Northern Interior Forest Industry. SHARP was established in the 1988 to 1991 Collective Agreement. Members in SHARP include Conifer companies, Canfor, West Fraser Mills Ltd., other operations and USW Locals 1-424 and 1-425.
SHARP is jointly managed by a Board of 8 trustees, 4 appointed by the USW and 4 appointed by the Northern Interior Forest Industry. Conifer has been appointed as the administrator of the Trust and organizes the day-to-day activities of SHARP such as accounts receivable, accounts payable and manages the trust investments as directed by the Trustees.
SHARP’s chief objectives are:
“The improvement of safety and health protection measures already in place in the forest industry, generally, and by means of research, education and training, the creation and development of a safe and healthful work environment for all persons employed in the various sectors of the forest industry in Northern British Columbia.”
The trust is fully funded by industry contributions based on one-half cent per employee per hour worked. When the Trust funds reach $100 000, the Employers contribute an additional half cent per hour for a total of one-cent per hour until the plan reaches $200 000 at which time the additional half cent per hour is discontinued.
SHARP Trustees have endorsed many SHARP safety initiatives over the years including:
Having an Ergonomics Report on repetitive strain injuries in mills by the BC Research Institute completed in 1994.
SHARP bi-annual Safety Conferences.
Sponsoring SHARP funded television and radio safety awareness campaign regarding working safely in the forest industry.
Developing a seminar geared at dealing with Shiftwork issues.
Acting as a wide distribution network for forest companies to share near misses, accidents and injuries at their companies with other companies to help prevent similar incidents from occurring elsewhere in the industry.
Delivering a one day seminar on the effects of shift work and strategies for dealing with shift work.
Partnering with the Justice Institute to Deliver a 3 day training program for Safety Committees, Safety Professionals, Supervisors and HR Professionals in dealing with Conflict Resolution & Problem Solving in Safety Situations (Resolutions Through Consensus).
Partnering with the BC Safety Council to deliver a one day training program on Accident Investigation Techniques and Worksite Safety Inspections.
Delivering a half day seminar on bullying and harassment titled "Is There A Bully In Your Workplace?"
Sponsoring a FP Innovations "Sawmill Wood Dust Sampling Analysis and Explosivity" research program.
Please check this website often to look for upcoming SHARP news and events.
See below for a list of events and downloadable PDFs
- Safety Conference 2007
- Safety Conference 2009
- Safety Conference 2011
- Safety Conference 2013
- Safety Conference 2015
- Safety Conference 2017
- Safety Conference 2020
- SHARP Training Initiatives
- SHARP Trust Agreement
- SHARP Trustees
- SHARP/WorkSafe Television Campaign
- The Mark Johnson Story
- Wood Dust Abatement Resources
SHARP Safety Conference 2007
2007 Post Conference Brochure
SHARP Safety Conference 2009
2009 Post Conference Brochure
Dr. Louis Hugo Francescutti - Leadership: Making Injuries A Priority: Part A
Dr. Louis Hugo Francescutti - Leadership: Making Injuries A Priority: Part B
Credit Counselling Presentation - How To Address The Challenges & Stresses Of Today's Workplace
Bob Aikens - Leading Change With The Brain
Mike Tasker - WorksafeBC - Keeping Safety On The Agenda In a Slow Economy
WorksafeBC - SHELL Model Presentation
WorksafeBC - Human Factors Presentation Factors
SHARP Safety Conference 2011
2011 Post Conference Brochure
Large Group Discussion Ideas - Improving Safety & Overcoming Barriers
SHARP Safety Conference 2013SHARPen Leadership Skills: Developing and Nurturing Safety Leadership, Culture and Climate
September 19 & 20, 2013 at the Westwood MB Church in Prince George, BC
2013 Conference Brochure
2013 Post Conference Report
Safety Culture Best Practices Round Table
Emergency Response Best Practices Round Table
SHARP Safety Conference 2015SHARPen Your Skills: The Ones You Know, Should Know, or be Willing to Learn
September 24 & 25, 2015 at the Westwood MB Church in Prince George, BC
2015 Conference Brochure
2015 Post Conference Report
Predicting the next incident in your wokplace (what keeps you up at night?):
Round Table Discussion
Wood dust and the ellimination of a potenital hazard: How far we've come and where we are going:
Barry Nakahara - WorkSafeBC, Presentation
Ed Kent - SHARP Dust Abatement Resource Coordinator, Presentation
Bruce McLean - Lakeland Mills, Presentation
Round Table Discussion
SHARP Safety Conference 2017SHARPen Your Safety Senses, By Building Your Health and Safety Toolkit
September 21 & 22, 2017 at the Westwood MB Church in Prince George, BC
2017 Conference Brochure
2017 Post Conference Report
Rondtable: Safety Perceptions in Your Company, What can you reasonable expect to be your standards? - Darren Beattie, Conifex and Cam Meroniuk, Conifer, Presentation
Safe and Sound, Creating a Psychologically Healthy and Safe Workplace - Gord Menelaws, Presentation
2017 SHARP Conference Committee:
Cam Meroniuk, Conifer
Brad Evans, Conifex Inc.
Brad Mores, USW local 1-2017
Brian O’Rourke, USW local 1-2017
Don Hope, Conference Coordinator
SHARP Safety Conference 2020SHARPen Your Views on Safety, in an Evolving Industry
October 1 & 2, 2020 at the Westwood MB Church in Prince George, BC
2020 SHARP Conference Committee:
Cam Meroniuk, Conifer, Conference Coordinator
Brian O’Rourke, USW local 1-2017
Don Iwaskow, USW local 1-2017
Running Effective Meetings with Pam Penner - February 2011
SHIFT Work Seminar Presentation - January 2007
Grace Cox - Industry Trustee - Canfor
Scott Wynn - Industry Trustee - Tolko Industries Ltd.
Lori Saretsky - Industry Trustee - West Fraser TImber Co. Ltd.
Brian O’Rourke - United Steelworkers Trustee - Local 1-2017
Don Iwaskow - United Steelworkers Trustee - Local 1-2017
Paul French - United Steelworkers Trustee - Local 1-2017
Brad Mores - United Steelworkers Trustee - Local 1-2017
November 23 2012
Awareness Campaign Underway With Strong Message
Prince George BC- The Central and Northern Forest Industry and USW Local 1-424 and 1-425 have put forward a seven week awareness campaign under the joint Safety Health Awareness Research Program (SHARP), in partnership with WorkSafeBC. The campaign will see two ads rotating on all northern TV stations covering Kamloops to the borders of BC in the north. The campaign will focus on drugs and alcohol in the work place as well their use while enjoying the holidays with friends and family. The other ad will emphasize just how important locking out equipment is before performing repairs. ‘’Safety is everyone’s business and using common sense saves lives at work or on personal time away from work, ‘’said Sharp trustee Brian O’Rourke, Health and Safety Director for USW 1-424. ‘’ This past year has seen too many deaths and disasters affecting worker’s families and communities so the message is clear: work safe, play safe and drive safe, don’t take the risk. The estimated total cost to implement this campaign from all partners is $20,000. Said WorkSafeBC communications director Scott McCloy, ‘’We believe this is a very small price to pay as we strive to get this message out and prevent a serious injury or even fatality. It’s about protecting your job, livelihood and family, that’s what’s important.’’
Based in Prince George, the USW and Forest Industry “Safety Health Awareness Research Program (SHARP) is committed to improvement of safety and health protection measures in place in the forest industry by means of research, education and training, the creation and development of a safe and healthy work environment for all those employed in various sectors in Northern BC.
Serving 2.3 million workers and about 200,000 employers, WorkSafeBC is a provincial statutory agency governed by a Board of Directors and funded by employers. WorkSafeBC was born out of compromise between workers and employers in 1917 where workers gave up the right to sue their employer or fellow workers for injuries on the job in return for no-fault insurance program fully paid by employers. WorkSafeBC is committed to a safe and healthy work place and to providing return to work rehabilitation and legislated compensation benefits to workers as a result of their employment.
SHARP and WorkSafeBC Partner On Safety Awareness Video
October 14 2014
Twenty Minutes of Hell One Minute to Heaven
Prince George BC - The Central and Northern Forest Industry and USW Local 1-424 and USW 1-425 have funded the production of a safety video under the joint Safety Health Awareness Research Program (SHARP), in partnership with WorkSafeBC. The eight minute video involves an interview with Mark Johnson, a young worker injured in a sawmill incident. The objective of the video, which presents Mark's story and a warning about safety will be made available in the orientation of new workers and for safety crew meetings.
"We want to emphasize the hazards of working in the industry and not to take risks or be afraid to ask questions if you're not sure about a task assigned or procedures for safe work," said SHARP Trustee Brian O'Rourke, Health Safety Director for USW 1-424. "Mark has a very compelling message and we believe having his story on tape will allow for easier access to Mark's message and cover more workers throughout the region in our drive to inform and protect workers on the job."
We believe this project is another step towards safer, healthier workplaces," said WorkSafeBC Community Relations Director Scott McCloy. "It's about protecting your life, livelihood and family, that's what's most important and this project will provide important safety awareness for new and experienced workers."
Based in Prince George, the USW and Forest Industry Safety Health Awareness Research Program (SHARP) is committed to "the improvement of safety and health protection measures already in place in the forest industry, generally, and by means of research, education and training, the creation and development of a safe and healthy work environment for all persons employed in the various sectors of the forest industry in Northern BC."
Serving about 2 Million workers and more than 215,000 employers, WorkSafeBC is a provincial statutory agency governed by a Board of Directors and funded by employers. WorkSafeBC was born from a historic compromise between B.C's workers and employers in 1917 where workers gave up the right to sue their employer or fellow workers for injuries on the job in return for a no fault insurance program fully paid by employers. WorkSafeBC is committed to a safe and healthy work place and to providing return to work rehabilitation and legislated compensation benefits to workers as a result of their employment.
WorkSafe Combustible Wood Dust Mitigation Control Backgrounder - July 2014
WorkSafe Combustible Wood Dust Management Program Development Guide - July 2014
WorkSafe Combustible WorkSafe Wood Dust Mitigation and Control Checklist - July 2014
MAG Wood Dust Mitigation & Control Audit Template - July 2014
MAG Wood Dust Mitigation & Control Audit - Auditor Worksheet, Questionnaire and Guideline - July 2014
FIPI Module 1 Combustible Dust Hazard Mitigation (For Supervisors/Managers) - November 2013
FIPI Module 2 Combustible Dust Hazard Recognition (For Workers) - February 2014
FPInnovations Sawmill Wood Dust Sampling Analysis and Explosibility Report - February 2013
Wood Dust in Sawmills Best Practices - May 2012
Additional resources can be found on the WorkSafe BC website