November 5, 2015: Whistleblower Report Exposes WSIB Interference in Medical Care

Whistleblower Report Exposes WSIB Interference in Medical Care:

Doctors Allege Injured Workers are Re-Victimized by the Compensation System

Share this link on social media: with the hashtags and links #WSIB #CanLab @OFLabour @ONIWG

(TORONTO, ON) ─ The Ontario Federation of Labour (OFL) and the Ontario Network of Injured Workers’ Groups (ONIWG) today released a damning report exposing interference on the part of the Workplace Safety and Insurance Board (WSIB) in the medical care of injured workers.

OFL ONIWG WSIB Report banner photo

“This report confirms what injured worker advocates have been hearing for years – that the WSIB system is more interested in clearing its case load than supporting workers who have been seriously injured on the job,” said OFL Secretary-Treasurer Nancy Hutchison. “These doctors are blowing the whistle on the WSIB’s punitive practice of ‘deeming’ injured workers eligible to resume work when their treating physicians and medical professionals have clearly stated the opposite. The report we are releasing today tells the story of these doctors and their patients. We hope it will force a formal investigation into the WSIB’s treatment of medical advice and lead to systemic change.”

The report, called “Prescription Over-Ruled: Report on How Ontario’s Workplace Safety and Insurance Board Systematically Ignores the Advice of Medical Professionals,” was produced with the assistance of six registered psychologists who originally raised the alarm about the WSIB’s management of medical care and medical evidence as it relates to WSIB benefits recipients. However, since then, many other medical professionals and injured workers have come forward to share similar stories about the WSIB’s failure to heed medical advice regarding readiness to return to work, insufficient treatment, blaming ‘pre-existing’ conditions for ongoing illness, and using independent medical reviews which proclaim patients to be healed, despite the evidence of treating practitioners.

“Over the past 5 years, we have seen an alarming decline in WSIB services from difficult to impossible,” said Sudbury-based Rehabilitation Psychologist, Dr. Keith Klassen. “When I talk to other psychologists and health professionals they describe the same pattern. From what we see it seems that the WSIB has become a service whose prime objective is simply not to serve.”

“The red tape is tangling up legitimate claims and preventing injured workers from getting the coverage they need,” said Sudbury-based Rehabilitation Psychologist Dr. Giorgio Ilacqua. “Behind every claim is a real person, with a family that has been turned upside down by a workplace injury, they deserve immediate and consistent care, not bureaucracy and red tape.”

“The net effect is a WSIB system that re-victimizes the very injured workers it is mandated to compensate and protect,” said Hutchison.

To download the full report, visit:

The Ontario Federation of Labour (OFL) represents 54 unions and one million workers in Ontario. For information, visit and follow the OFL on Facebook and Twitter: @OFLabour.


For further information:

Joel Duff, OFL Communications Director: 416-707-0349 or *FRENCH/ENGLISH*


2015 CLIFF Film Festival returns to WWEC


Click image to see film lineup

Please join us for the 7th Annual Canadian Labour International Film Festival (CLiFF) – Canada’s only Labour film festival.

The Canadian Labour International Film Festival tells the stories of workers – unionised and non-unionised. CLiFF is the stage and the voice of those who seek justice on the job and dignity in their workplace. CLiFF would also like to bring the subject of unpaid work into a public discussion

Our festival provides a national platform to show and showcase those stories which have been made into films, but cannot find an audience beyond the film makers’ own circle of influence. We give filmmakers exposure across Canada (and in some parts of the United States). We bring the community attention to labour films made in the past that represent stories that deserve wider and current audience?

Furthermore, giving workers, especially young workers, an opportunity to learn some of the history of the trade union movement is crucial in continuing to fight for our rights. Those who hold the torch now are looking forward to passing it into hands with much more energy.

Sunday, 15th November, 2015 at 6:00 p.m.
Windsor Workers’ Education Centre
328 Pelissier St. (South of University)
Windsor, ON
Sponsored by
OPSEU & IWW-Windsor
CONTACT: Frank Butler • WWEC @ 519-252-1212

October 13: What’s up at WWEC

Over the last few weeks WWEC has been hosting a Forms Clinic staffed by St Clair College students who are accompanied by a working Para Legal. This has caused increased traffic into the centre and that’s a good thing!

As well, we’re seeing an increase in the number of workers coming in for help from WWEC. For example, workers seeking advice on how to approach their board of director employer regarding an abusive supervisor, a worker injured in a vegetable packaging plant and now cut off from WSIB, a worker heading for mediation in appealing a decision by an Employment Standards officer, and we’re following up on a number of other worker issues that have come up over the summer.

We can run "Let's talk About It" discussion sessions anytime. This poster was created by local graphic artist Jeff Hasulo for our 2014 campaign

We can run “Let’s talk About It” discussion sessions anytime. This poster was created by local graphic artist Jeff Hasulo for our 2014 campaign

Volunteer Outreach Coordinator Salem Berhane is working with several student volunteers out of the St Clair College Para Legal program and those with the VIP program at the University of Windsor. They are embarking on a number of projects for outreach to workers whose only protection is under the Employment Standards Act.

If you have any questions on work related issues, especially in non-unionized workplaces (we’ll talk to any worker with questions), please contact WWEC: Phone: 519 252 1212, Email:, and you can drop in between 9AM and 4PM at 328 Pelissier St., just south of University Ave.