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APG Sees Educating Producers & Discussion with Government as Critical to Proposed Bill 6 Changes NOV 18 2015 | Producers | News Release

Alberta Pulse Growers (APG) will provide educational opportunities and continue to share information with members regarding the proposed changes to Alberta’s farm safety legislation. The omnibus Bill 6, titled Enhanced Protection for Farm and Ranch Workers Act, was introduced in the Alberta Legislature yesterday.

“There is significant concern from our membership regarding the technical details associated with the proposed changes, which covers farm safety, labour relations, WCB and employment standards,” said APG Chair Allison Ammeter. “APG will provide feedback in the collaborative process of developing technical details and discuss areas of employment standards to ensure that they are effective and in the best interest of our membership.”

APG participated with three other crop commissions in a joint press release on Sept. 1 in response to indications from Alberta’s Ministry of Jobs, Skills, Training and Labour that removal of the agriculture exemption from the Occupational Health and Safety Act was a priority. The commissions stated that beyond the removal of the exemption, consultation and collaboration with the agriculture sector was necessary to ensure a successful outcome for farmers and farm workers.

“Farm safety is paramount to farm managers as it is often our own family members who are at risk,” Ammeter added. “However, removal of the OH&S exemption will likely do little to improve farm safety. Education and extension of safe farming practices is the main action that will lead to a significant reduction in fatalities and injuries.”

Ammeter encouraged producers to have their voices heard about the proposed changes at public meetings planned by the Alberta government.

“Farmers are the subject matter experts on what will be most effective for their farm,” Ammeter said. “We look forward to sharing that expertise with the Government of Alberta as the technical details are developed.”