Accueil » 42-3 ( 1987) » Santé et sécurité du travail au Québec: le défi de la concertation patronale - syndicale

Santé et sécurité du travail au Québec: le défi de la concertation patronale - syndicale

Micheline Plasse

Résumé

Cet article porte sur la réponse du milieu du travail à la mise en œuvre de la Loi sur la sante et la sécurité du travail. Dans une perspective d'analyse des politiques, l'article montre que cette loi contient deux types principaux de politique, l'un réglementaire et l'autre constitutionnel. Les éléments constitutionnels de la loi, ceux qui changent les règles du jeu en matière de sante et de sécurité du travail, se heurtent à des difficultés de mise en œuvre plus complexes au sein des groupes d'intérêts que les éléments réglementaires de la loi. Ces derniers, règles et normes de conformité auxquelles doivent se soumettre ces groupes, s'inscrivent plutôt dans une logique de continuité et ne présentent pas de graves difficultés de mise en œuvre.

Abstract

This article shows the response of the Quebec labour actors to the implantation of the Act Respecting Occupational Health and Safety. The author uses a policy analysis approach to demonstrate the distinctive behaviour of management and unions to both the regulatory elements and the constitutional elements of the law.

In fact, the article confirms the hypothesis that the socio-organizational dynamics are much more problematic in the implantation of the constitutional elements of the law: the new principles of prevention, paritarism, workers' participation, as well as agreement among management, unions and workers to take themselves in charge. The article also confirms the hypothesis that the management and unions are less reluctant regarding the regulatory aspects of the law: norms, rules of conformity, the function of inspection, in sum ail that is likely to be brought before administrative courts.

The paper shows that the insecurity of each party explains this distinctive behaviour. The regulatory elements of the law are in fact in continuity with the past, that is to say with the laws and rules of conformity that existed before the reform. The constitutional elements of the law, on the other hand, are new and require a change in attitude by each actor concerned. Management must overcome its fears of the consequences of participation and accept the principle that the implication of workers and unions is good for management of health and safety and is good also for the management of the enterprise. The same is true for unions: they must overcome both their fears of participation and their passivity. The unions have in fact a tendency to wait for the intervention of the state to solve their problems. As a result, workers are not as yet present in the processus. There are information and training gaps to fill. The law is, in short, an innovative and demanding reform for ail concerned actors. This reform requires both reformulation and redistribution in the roles of each. The article concludes by asking the fundamental question: do the labour actors have enough maturity to take up and accept this tremendous challenge?