The Yukon Chamber of Commerce (YCC) continues to advocate the importance of safe and healthy workplaces. We believe in the important role that that the Yukon Workers’ Compensation Health and Safety Board (YWCHSB) provides. We also believe that the rates have to be affordable and reasonable in order to help Yukon Businesses prosper.
In reviewing the 2019 YWCHSB Industry Classification and Assessment Rates, which were announced today, the Yukon Chamber of Commerce notes a rate reduction in the medium and high rate groups of the resource and transportation and construction classifications. There was also a rate reduction in the high rate group of the service classification. The four rate groups that did see increases were all under 3%, with three of them under 2%.
Most importantly, there was one death at work in 2017. This is down from three in 2016.
The lost-time injury rate per 100 covered workers dropped slightly to 2.0, down from 2.1 the preceding year
The number of lost-time claims rose slightly from 469 to 477, up 1.7%
YWCHSB’s decision, which was prompted by efforts on the part of the Yukon Chamber (YCC), to issue $10 million in rebates to employers in 2015, in 2016 and again in 2017, resulted in a decrease in the surplus in the YWCHSB compensation fund.
“We are very pleased with the nine consecutive years of positive growth in the YWCHSB investment fund, and their refunds of surplus reserves over the last three years,” stated YCC Board Chair Stanley Noel. “YCC believes it is important for employers to understand that YWCHSB has enjoyed excellent returns on its investments. This in turn has resulted in a large surplus, and allowed YWCHSB to subsidise the average rates paid by employers over the last several years by about $0.35 per $100 of payroll. This significant subsidy on all rates has been part of efforts by the YWCHSB to reduce its surplus reserves. Without these subsidies funded by surplus funds, employers would have paid higher assessments over the past several years,” Noel added.
Furthermore, YCC Board Chair Stanley Noel said, “The new rates remind us all of the importance of safe and healthy workplaces. Yukon workers and employers need to continue to work together to focus on maintaining a safe work environment. When they do, assessment rates go down. Decreased costs to employers enable businesses to invest resources in ways that grow the economy, create wealth and increase employment.”
YCC President Peter Turner observed, “Workers and employers should be congratulated on working towards a safer work environment. We are encouraged by the lower rates in the construction classification, as well as medium and high rate groups of the resource and transportation classification and high rate group of the service classification. These are generally higher risk classifications, so reductions reflect progress in workplace safety, and improved return-to-work outcomes.”
The Chamber encourages all employers, managers, supervisors and workers to work together to ensure everyone is safe at work.
The new rates by industry for 2019 can be found on the YWCHSB website at wcb.yk.ca/rates