The Workplace Hazardous Materials Information System (WHMIS) was first introduced in 1988 and was modified in February 2015 to align with the Globally Harmonized System of Classification and Labelling of Chemicals (GHS). The goal of GHS is to have a common set of rules for classifying and labelling hazardous products as well as a standard format for safety data sheets (SDSs).

In order to allow time for suppliers, employers and workers to adjust to the WHMIS 2015 system, implementation will take place over a three year period and conclude on December 1, 2018. Because of this transition period, elements of the old system will still continue to remain in place until the 2018 conclusion date.

NLCSA’s half-day, in-class WHMIS 2015 (and 1988) course will now cover the key elements of both the WHMIS 1988 and WHMIS 2015 systems of classification and labelling of chemicals. Specifically, this course will provide participants with guidance on the process of chemical classification and hazards communication through the use of labels and Safety Data Sheets (SDS), previously known as Material Safety Data Sheets (MSDS). Responsibilities, hazard symbols, and hazard pictograms will also be discussed.

NLCSA is also in the process of partnering with the Nova Scotia Constructuion Safety Association and the New Brunswick Construction Safety Association in developing an online WHMIS 2015 course.