Levitt-Safety Blog

Addressing the Need for Women-Specific PPE: Ensuring Safety and Inclusivity

Leslie MolinMarket Segment Manager - Personal SafetyMarch 1, 2024

As a trusted Canadian health and safety distribution and service company, Levitt-Safety prioritizes the well-being and safety of all workers. In our previous blog PPE for Women: Real Solutions to keep all workers safe, we highlighted the CSA report on women’s personal protective equipment (PPE) and featured vendors leading the way in offering PPE specific for women. 

Today we want to highlight what has happened in Ontario and British Columbia as it relates to legislation and best practice provincial guidelines. 

Recent Legislation Changes in Ontario: In Ontario, construction apprenticeship for women has increased by 28% in the past year. *

In March 2023, the Ontario government announced several changes to the Construction Projects Regulation under the Occupational Health & Safety Act. This is now in effect since July 1st, 2023. Under O.Reg.61/23, section 21 has been amended by adding the following: 

(4) Personal protective clothing and equipment that is provided, worn, or used shall be a proper fit, having regard for all relevant factors including body types. https://www.ontario.ca/laws/regulation/r23061 

Toronto under Construction

WorkSafe BC released a guideline in March 2023 to ensure the proper fit of PPE for all workers regardless of gender.  

“The issue of ill-fitting PPE is particularly pronounced for women in traditionally male-dominated industries, such as construction, mining, and firefighting. Many women have reported experiencing discomfort, reduced mobility, and compromised safety due to PPE that is designed primarily for men.”*

Reminding employers about WorkSafeBC's OHS Guideline Part 8 outlines that PPE must be designed, selected, and used appropriately for all.

“We recognize that the differences in body shape and size between men and women can make it challenging to find PPE that fits properly,” said Suzana Prpic, Senior Manager of Prevention Field Services at WorkSafeBC. “We want to make sure that all workers are protected and comfortable while on the job, and that means ensuring that PPE is designed and fitted to accommodate a wide range of body types.” *

Impact and Benefits:

These recent changes in regulations and guidelines are expected to have a positive impact on worker safety, particularly for women entering male-dominated industries such as mining and construction. Women will now have access to PPE that fits properly, addressing their unique needs and ensuring their safety and comfort on the job.

Levitt-Safety’s Expanded Offering:

At Levitt-Safety, we are proud to be leading the charge by offering a wide selection of women-specific PPE and expert guidance to help you develop a comprehensive program. Visit our product page that showcases flame-resistant apparel, high-visibility apparel, gloves, boots and more. Join us in creating safer and more inclusive workplaces for everyone.

Explore our full range of women’s PPE, shop now. If you don’t see what you’re looking for or need help developing a women’s-specific PPE program for your workplace, please contact us today.

Sources: *The Ontario government plans to require women-only bathrooms on large construction sites, as reported by Amy Simon from Global News (March 15, 2023)   


Are you ready to invest in your team’s safety?

Would you like some help assessing the PPE needs of your business? Are you looking to invest in Women’s PPE, but don’t know where to start? Levitt-Safety has been advising and supplying companies with safety clothing for over 85 years.

Let us help you develop a PPE program to keep your team safe.
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