WSIAT Stakeholder Event, September 2023: Highlights and Summary

  • 16 octobre 2023
  • Teresa A. Gianfelice, Office of the Worker Advisor

The Workplace Safety and Insurance Appeals Tribunal held a stakeholder information session on September 14, 2023. Below is a summary of the content of the session for those who were unable to attend.

Chair Update

General Updates:

  • The Tribunal’s Annual Report is now on the WSIAT’s website
  • WSIAT staff & OICs remain on a hybrid mode
  • WSIAT 7th floor reception & library are open to public Tuesdays and Thursdays 8:30 am to 4:30 pm

Hearing Formats:

  • The default hearing option remains video conference
  • First hybrid hearing (combination of in-person participants and remote participants) scheduled for October 2023
  • In 2023, to date, 20 in-person hearings were scheduled
  • Total annual hearings around 2,000+ - in-person hearings remain a very small percentage
  • So far three in-person hearings have been confirmed for 2024

Time to Hearing:

  • Currently about 4.5 months to hearing (from when party is hearing ready) – the Tribunal would like to bring this down
  • In-person hearings may take longer to schedule especially if more people start requesting them

New Pre-Hearing Process:

  • Will be implemented early 2024
  • WSIAT will be holding information sessions on new process and information will be posted on their website

Observers at virtual hearings:

  • The attendance of observers is at discretion of Vice-Chair / Panel
  • An observer might be an emotional support person for witness/worker or a trainee – OIC, WSIAT staff, reps, college students
  • Request for observers should be made at least one week in advance
  • An observer must be on-camera and behind witness. Must not prompt witnesses
  • Too many observers / parties could make hearing process difficult. Tribunal may limit observers
  • Should not be distraction through process
  • Representatives/parties need to comply with Practice Direction (PD), Who May Attend a Hearing, paragraph 4