A Certificate of Recognition (COR) is essential to the Worker’s Compensation Board’s Partnerships in Injury Reduction (PIR) program.  AHSA members are issued a COR by the AHSA and Alberta Labour once they have successfully implemented a basic workplace health and safety management system, including the following elements: 

  • Management Leadership and Organizational Commitment
  • Hazard Identification & Assessment
  • Hazard Control
  • Qualifications, Orientation & Training
  • Workplace Inspections
  • Emergency Response
  • Incident Investigation
  • Program Administration

Once an employer has developed and implemented their workplace health and safety management system, it must be independently audited. Audits are coordinated through your Certifying Partner, the AHSA. The AHSA will review completed audit reports for compliance with quality standards before the results are submitted to Alberta Labour and a COR is issued to the employer.

Once a COR has been issued, it is valid for a three year period as long as annual maintenance requirements are met.  An external audit must be conducted at least every 3 years to renew the COR. For the external audit, employers can either contract an AHSA-certified consultant auditor or have staff trained and certified to participate in the Peer Audit system.

What are the advantages of attaining a COR?

By implementing an effective occupational health and safety management system (OHSMS), you can reduce workplace incidents, lower WCB rates, and improve the overall efficiencies at your work site.  A well executed and maintained OHSMS may also improve employee morale and reduce turnover.

Maintaining a COR ensures ongoing review of an employer’s OHSMS so that gaps can be identified and corrected.  It also provides employers with a government-issued certificate recognizing their efforts to maintain a healthy and safe work place. And of course, having a COR qualifies employers for WCB premium rebates of up to 20%.

Can an employer earn a PIR rebate without having a COR?

No. Employers must be COR-holders in order to be eligible for a PIR refund from the WCB.  

What is a Certifying Partner?

Alberta Labour enters into formal partnerships with organizations that wish to take a leadership role in the promotion and development of workplace health and safety in Alberta.  A Certifying Partner commits to provide health and safety training and other resources, auditor training and certification, and the audit quality assurance required to issue employer Certificates of Recognition.  The Certifying Partner for the hospitality industry is the Alberta Hospitality Safety Association (AHSA).  

Does it matter which Certifying Partner I choose?

There are benefits in selecting a Certifying Partner familiar with your industry.  Hotels and conference centres (classified under industry code 87503) are automatically members of the AHSA through a levy paid as part of their WCB premiums. These properties receive cost-effective services through the AHSA, including Certifying Partner services.  Other hospitality industry employers (such as restaurants, lodges, ski hills, camps, bars, golf courses, private clubs, etc.) can pay an associate membership fee to receive the same services as a full member.  Employers that are looking for Certifying Partner services only can pay a flat fee to be a CORe member.