A comprehensive review of the functions of the National Office of WHMIS (NOW) was conducted at the end of 2009 by a consultant, the Sussex Circle . It was apparently completed and its recommendations submitted to Health Canada . However the review was never released to the stakeholders.
GHS implementation in Canada
A Current Issues Committee meeting took place on May 13-14, 2010, in Ottawa , and was followed by teleconferences on June 3 and 10. The purpose of the meeting was essentially to review the 133-page draft Discussion Document (DD) sent to the stakeholders prior to the meeting. The DD itself was put together by the NOW and reflected the decisions that were reached following the WHMIS Working Group meetings we have had since 2003. The document also listed some outstanding technical issues and issues that needed to be revisited in light of the publication of the 3rd revision of the GHS Purple Book.
At the beginning of the meeting, the new Director General, Athana Mentzelopoulos (replacing Charles Ethier) introduced herself and stated that implementation of the GHS is a high priority. She advised that she had established a GHS implementation team. She informed participants that a work plan will be developed on a priority basis and emphasized the Government’s commitment to moving forward on the GHS.
James Van Loon, the Director of the Program Development Bureau, was also introduced at the meeting. He is charged with heading a GHS implementation team to navigate the amendments for both WHMIS and the CCCR through the regulatory maze. James Van Loon also happens to be Kim Headrick's new boss. Kim is chairing the UN Sub-Committee of Experts on GHS (SCEGHS).
GHS implementation worldwide
Again some countries have been very active in the implementation of the GHS in 2010 especially the Asian countries while the EU is steadily putting in place the program.
In the US , following the publication of the GHS Notice of Proposed Rulemaking (NPRM) by OSHA in 2009, the hearings on the GHS proposal were completed at the beginning of 2010. The final rule is expected for August 2011.
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