Enzo Garritano

The IHSA Safety Podcast is a free podcast from the Infrastructure Health and Safety Association that seeks to improve the lives of workers in Ontario — one thought-provoking discussion at a time.

We engage with professionals and industry influencers to help them implement and improve health and safety solutions for workers and the workplace. Each episode explores best practices, resources, and training to control and eliminate safety hazards in work environments involving high-risk activities in the industries that IHSA serves: construction, transportation, and electric utilities.

Episode 43: Understanding Opioids, and the Crisis in Canada (part two)

Opioids are a class of drugs that include the illegal drug heroin, synthetic opioids such as fentanyl, and pain relievers available legally by prescription, including oxycodone (OxyContin®), hydrocodone (Vicodin®), codeine, and morphine. Opioid overdoses and deaths are a public health crisis affecting many working Canadians.


Episode 42: Declining Mental Health and Suicide Risk
  1. Everyone has mental health concerns from time to time. But what some may consider “normal”

    challenges can develop into a mental illness if left unaddressed. A mental illness is a medically

    diagnosed disorder that affects how a person thinks, behaves, and interacts with others. It can

    have a prolonged, negative effect on quality of life.

    • By age 40, about 50% of people will have—or will have had—a mental illness.
    • Approximately 11 Canadians die by suicide each day—about 4,000 people annually.

    Compare that to workplace-related fatalities, which are about three daily, or 1,017 per year

    Resources mentioned during the podcast can be located below, and within IHSA’s Assessing Your Mental Health Safety Talk.

    declining-mental-health-and-suicide-risk.pdf (ihsa.ca)



Episode 41: Assessing Your Mental Health

Mental health and physical health are similar concepts: they both refer to states of well-being. Mental health includes your thoughts and emotions, feelings of connection to others, and ability to manage life’s highs and lows. We all have mental health challenges, just as we all have physical health challenges, from time to time. It’s important to monitor your mental health and seek help and support if you are concerned.

Resources mentioned during the podcast can be located below, and within IHSA’s Assessing Your Mental Health Safety Talk.


  1.   Assessing Your Mental Health IHSA Safety Talk
  2. Check Up From the Neck Up | Mood Disorders Association of Ontario
  3. Building Your Resilience (apa.org)
Episode 40: COR – Preparing for an external audit

Sam Pitaro, Lead COR™ Auditor, brings his experience with the external audit process to this episode as he outlines what to expect during the audit as well as how to achieve a smooth and successful experience. Sam and Stacey also talk about important timelines and administration associated with an external audit.

Episode 39: COR™ – Understanding Your Audit Results
In this episode, Stacey Blea, HSMS Consultant, discusses what to expect during your internal audit results debrief. Sam Pitaro, Lead auditor, provides insight into this experience and how to maximize its benefits for the organization
Episode 38: Understanding Opioids, and the Crisis in Canada

The Occupational Health and Safety Act (Ontario) has been amended to require employers to provide naloxone kits and comply with related requirements if the employer becomes aware, or ought reasonably to be aware, that there may be a risk of a worker having an opioid overdose at a workplace where that worker performs work for the employer, or where the prescribed circumstances exist.


Episode 37: Research Results for COR Certification in Ontario

UBC’s Dr. Chris McLeod describes the methodology he and his team utilized in conducting their research on how the Certificate of Recognition (COR™) program affected lost-time and high-impact injury rates in Ontario. In this discussion, IHSA’s Paul Casey also shares what prompted IHSA to engage with Dr. McLeod and the University of British Columbia.


Episode 36: Mental Health (part four): Toxic Masculinity

Toxic masculinity is a cultural norm that involves pressures on men to behave in a certain way—often based on outdated and unrealistic stereotypes of “manliness.” This does not mean that men are toxic. However, the pressures we place on men to live up to masculine ideals have been shown to be harmful to both men and women.

According to some researchers, toxic masculinity has three core components*:

1. Toughness: The notion that men should be physically strong, behaviourally aggressive, and unemotional.

2. Antifeminity: The idea that men should reject anything considered to be feminine, such as showing emotion or accepting help.

3. Power: The assumption that men must work toward obtaining power and status (social and financial) to gain the respect of others.


Episode 35: Mental Health (part three): Challenging Stigma and Reducing Mental Harm

Stigma is a set of negative beliefs and prejudices about a person or group of people. It is often based on myths and outdated social norms, and can lead to discrimination—unjust treatment and behaviours directed toward a person or group. Many people are stigmatized or discriminated against for more than one reason, including sexual orientation, gender, culture, or physical disability.

Experiencing stigma and/or discrimination can:

  • Lead to mental health or substance-use problems—or make existing issues worse
  • Cause people who already face discrimination (for any reason) to be even less able to find help or access services


Episode 34: Mental Health (Part Two): Beginning the Dialogue in the Workplace

Working in the trades comes with certain risks. Every day on the job, ironworkers, powerline technicians, long-haul truckers, and all other tradespeople face hazards that can affect their health and safety. We have long understood the need to control physical hazards. Less, however, has been done about the mental health risks that workers face.

On average, workers in construction and related industries have a greater risk of experiencing mental health challenges. This is due to a number of job-related factors that IHSA’s Safety Talks explore in detail. Left unaddressed, mental health problems can lead to everything from poor job performance and absenteeism to substance abuse and suicide.

By learning more about mental health, assessing your own well-being, and leading by example, you can promote ongoing discussions that will benefit your workplace right now and in the years to come.


How to Talk about Mental Health at your Workplace

Episode 33: Mental health (part one)

In the past, employers may have viewed mental health as a personal issue and not one to discuss with employees. But the topic should not be ignored at work. Employers and supervisors should find a way to connect with workers, as they can play an important role in identifying early signs and symptoms of mental health issues.

Starting a conversation about mental health is a simple way to begin building mental wellness into your workplace health and safety culture. But simple does not always mean easy. That’s why IHSA has released eight new safety talks to support recognizing and managing mental health in the workplace.


o  Safety Talks (ihsa.ca)

o   Resources for Mental Health in the Workplace | Think Mental Health

Episode 32: Threads of Life

Each worker and family member who has been affected by a workplace tragedy is a thread in the quilt of life. The Association for Workplace Tragedy Family Support, known as Threads of Life, is a Canadian registered charity dedicated to supporting families after a workplace fatality, life-altering injury or occupational disease. Their network of family members and corporate partners believes traumatic workplace injuries, occupational diseases and deaths are preventable.

Threads of Life – Assoc for Workplace Tragedy Family Support

Episode 31: Motor Vehicle Incident, Mobile Equipment, Struck By – MLTSD Blitz Initiative
In this episode we are joined by Juanita Martin, Provincial Specialist of the Ministry of Labour, Training and Skills Development (MLTSD) to get a better understanding of what the MLTSD is looking for as they kick off their first education and enforcement blitz of 2022 – focusing on Motor Vehicle Incident, Mobile Equipment and Struck by hazards. The initiative is running from April 1 to June 30 2022. In conversation with Juanita she shares the “why, when & what” of the initiative and in particular what the MLTSD inspectors will be looking for when they come to your workplace and Michelle Roberts will expand on the essential resources available from IHSA to help with the “how to get ready” for the blitz initiative.
Episode 30: National Construction Safety Officer

The objective of the National Construction Safety Officer (NCSO™) Certificate is to combine practical construction experience with a range of health and safety training. A certified NCSO™ is a valuable resource for construction firms when implementing health and safety measures, recognizing, assessing, controlling, and evaluating hazards or working toward building a strong health and safety culture. They can oversee others and provide support and advice specific to the industry and work.

Episode 29: Road Safety in Northern Ontario

Driving in Northern Ontario presents a unique set of driving-related hazards and some not so obvious differences than driving in Southern Ontario and many road users don’t understand and or fail to consider the uniqueness and are unprepared for safe traveling.

Whether you drive a commercial motor vehicle or a passenger vehicle, it’s important to be aware of the driving hazards and unique road conditions in Northern Ontario.


Episode 28: Supervisors in a Federally Regulated Workplace (Part Two)

Our multi-part series on Supervisors continues with a discussion with Doug Heintz, Manager – Health & Safety Training.


Episode 27: Supervisors in a Federally Regulated Workplace (Part One)

Our multi-part series on Supervisors kicks-off with a discussion with Federal Labour Program Ontario Regional Director, Bruce Christianson.


Episode 26: Supervisor Series "Training Requirements

Our multi-part series on Supervisors continues with a discussion on “Training Requirements” with Alex Hernandez, Health and Safety Consultant at Infrastructure Health & Safety Association


Episode 25: Documentation and Communication: Duties of a Supervisor

Our multi-part series on Supervisors continues with a discussion on “Documentation and Communication” with Jennifer McKenzie, Manager, Regional Operations North & East at Infrastructure Health & Safety Association


Episode 24: Supervisors: Duties of a Supervisor

Our multi-part series on Supervisors continues with a discussion on “Duties of a Supervisor” with Alain Leger, Manager Powerline Apprenticeship & Training.

Episode 23: Supervisors: Identifying and Addressing Hazards

Our multi-part series on Supervisors continues with a discussion on “Identifying and Addressing Hazards” with IHSA Health and Safety Consultant, Alana Stewart.   

Episode 22: The Competent Supervisor

Our multi-part series on Supervisors kicks-off with a discussion with Ministry of Labour, Training and Skills Development’s Assistant Deputy Minister, Jody Young. Jody oversees the Fair, Safe and Healthy Workplaces Division, and is all too familiar with why supervisors are a critically important component to a healthy and safe workplace.

Episode 21: Winter Driving

Whether you drive a commercial  vehicle or a passenger vehicle, it’s always important to be fully aware of the hazardous road conditions created by winter weather. In this podcast, IHSA’s Ken Rayner and Michelle Roberts discuss winter driving tips and break them down into four basic principles: preparation, planning, patience, and practice.

You can find additional winter driving resources at IHSA.ca:

Episode 20: Dr. Joel Moody, Ontario’s New Chief Prevention Officer

Dr. Joel Moody, Ontario’s new Chief Prevention Officer (CPO), joins IHSA to talk about his recent appointment and extensive background in public health, Ontario’s response to the pandemic, and the Prevention Office’s path and opportunities moving forward.

Episode 19: Preparing for the Internal Audit

In this episode, Stacey Blea, Occupational Health and Safety Management Systems Consultant, speaks to lead COR™ Auditor, Peter Smith, about what is involved in preparing for an internal COR™ audit. They look at what’s required in setting up for a successful internal audit including resources, training, and official documents.

Episode 18: Introducing the COR™ Team

This episode introduces IHSA’s COR™ team and looks at the various important roles each member plays in IHSA’s COR™ program. Guests include: Scott Needs, Maren Gamble, Deb Moskal, David Dametto, Peter Smith, John Kelly, and Sam Pitaro.

Episode 17: Getting started with COR™

This conversation with Paul Casey, Vice-President of Programs and Strategic Development, and David Steinschifter, Manager of Strategic Programs, provides an overview and starting point for those interested in getting into COR™ in Ontario. Paul and David discuss the history of COR™, its proven benefits, and the impact it is having across Ontario.

Episode 16: Prevention Works: The 5-year Strategy

Ron Kelusky, Ontario’s outgoing Chief Prevention Officer looks at key points from the Prevention Office’s new 5-year strategy. Ron also discusses his office’s key accomplishments during his tenure, and his view on the future of health and safety.

Episode 15: COVID-19: impacts and opportunities

Ron Kelusky, Ontario’s outgoing Chief Prevention Officer, shares his view on the impact of COVID-19 and the opportunities it presents in raising the profile of workplace health and safety.


Episode 14: Advancing workplace health and safety in Ontario

Ron Kelusky, Ontario’s outgoing Chief Prevention Officer with the Ministry of Labour, Training and Skills Development, joins IHSA to discuss his background and successes in working with industry to advance workplace health and safety. 

Episode 13: Customer Relations, Marketing, and Products

In the fifth and final episode of our special series focusing on what IHSA is and what we do, Ken Rayner, Vice-President of Customer Relations, Market Development and Labour Relations discusses how IHSA’s customer service team provides support to members, some of the many, many products IHSA offers, and the different communication channels IHSA uses to raise health and safety awareness in Ontario.

Episode 12: Stakeholder and Industry Support

In our fourth episode of IHSA’s five-part series on who we are and what we do, Dean Dunn, Vice-President of Stakeholder and Public Relations, discusses the Labour-Management Network and the important role its committees and partnerships play in the health and safety system across the province.

Episode 11: Fostering a Culture of Health and Safety

Our special five-part series on IHSA continues with this third episode where we talk with Paul Casey, Vice-President of Programs and Strategic Development. Paul provides an overview of three important IHSA programs: the Certificate of Recognition (COR™), Health and Safety Excellence (HSEP), and the National Construction Health and Safety Officer (NCSO™) program.

Episode 10: IHSA Training and Operations

In this second episode of our five-part series on IHSA, we talk to Greg Williamson, Vice-President of High Risk Activity, Training and Operations. Greg talks to us about how companies become IHSA members, some of the high-risk activity training courses IHSA offers, the Powerline Technician Apprenticeship program, and more.

Episode 9: IHSA and who we are

Our next five-part series of IHSA podcasts looks at who we are and what we do. Kicking off the series, IHSA President and CEO, Enzo Garritano, talks to us about IHSA’s history, our vision, and mission. We also look at the key services IHSA provides and the different sectors we serve across the province.

Episode 8: Fall protection quick facts

We wrap up our special five-part series on Falls Awareness with our series-long guest, Brian Barron from the Ministry of Labour, Training and Skills Development. In this final episode, we look at fall protection quick facts including common FAQs, the hierarchy of controls, training, fines, and much more.

Episode 7: Common enforcement concerns

This fourth episode in our five-part series on Falls Awareness looks at the most common issues identified by inspectors from the Ministry of Labour, Training and Skills Development when conducting inspections on different job sites. 

Episode 6: Working at heights (WAH) training requirements

Our five-part series on Falls Awareness continues with our series guest, Brian Barron from Ministry of Labour, Training and Skills Development. In this third episode we look at training requirements for workers when working at heights. We also discuss training providers, the duties and responsibilities of employers, and much more.  

Episode 5: Workplace parties roles and responsibilities in preventing falls

In this second episode of our special Falls Awareness series, we continue our talk with Brian Barron from the Ministry of Labour, Training and Skills Development. We specifically look at the different roles and responsibilities that employers, supervisors, and workers have in preventing falls on job sites.

Episode 4 : Fall protection and when to use it.

In this first episode of our special five-part series on Falls Awareness, we talk to Brian Barron, Senior Manager of the Construction Health and Safety Program within the Ministry of Labour. Our first discussion with Brian considers the various methods of fall protection and the different situations in which they are required.

Episode 3: Seasonal road safety tips for warmer weather

Warmer weather is great for getting out on the road, but it also means there is increased volume on the road and more vulnerable road users, like motorcyclists and construction workers, sharing the road too. IHSA’s Michelle Roberts and OPP Sergeant Kerry Schmidt talk about seasonal road safety tips for warmer weather.

Episode 2: Sharing the road safely with large trucks
Our candid road safety conversation with OPP Sergeant Kerry Schmidt continues as he shares what risky driving behaviours he sees on the road around transport trucks. Often drivers of passenger vehicles are not aware of the limitations of transport trucks. Tune in to this episode to become a better informed driver around large trucks and improve how to share the road with them.
Episode 1: Road safety and the “Big Four”

In our very first episode, we have the privilege of sitting down with OPP Sergeant Kerry Schmidt for a candid conversation about road safety. He breaks down the most common risky behaviours on the road—also known as the “Big Four”: lack of seatbelts, impaired driving, speeding, and distracted driving. 

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The Infrastructure Health and Safety Association (IHSA) is Ontario’s trusted health and safety resource. Our goal is to improve the lives of Ontario workers. We provide resources and training to control and eliminate safety hazards in work environments involving high-risk activities. 

At IHSA we have always maintained a standard of excellence. We are proud of our role in helping to make Ontario one of the safest places in the world to work. Our focus is on workers and on keeping our promise to provide them with the tools to Work Safe for Life.

As part of Ontario’s health and safety system, we are recognized by the Ministry of Labour, Training and Skills Development, the Ministry of Colleges and Universities, the Ministry of Transportation, and the Workplace Safety and Insurance Board as designated trainers and consultants. So you can be sure that the training you get from IHSA meets regulatory requirements and compliance standards.