Partners in Prevention 2017: building a safe and prosperous future

May 15, 2017


Another year and another successful Partners in Prevention Health & Safety Conference & Trade Show.

Held on May 2-3 in Mississauga, Partners in Prevention 2017 propelled thousands of attendees through two intense days of learning, networking and exploring.

Ontario Labour Minister Kevin Flynn offered opening remarks. "With your help we’re building a very strong economy," said Flynn. "We're leading the country in job creation." We must also ensure the jobs we're creating are safe jobs, he said. "It's the recipe for a truly prosperous society."

"When we see the commitment of every individual and every organization here today, it really is inspiring," he said. "It demonstrates how ingrained in our workplaces the culture of health and safety truly is."

Partners in Prevention is Canada's largest and longest-running annual health and safety show. This year almost 5,000 people - delegates, speakers and exhibitors - converged for two days at The International Centre in Mississauga to explore, discuss and test innovative solutions to traditional and emerging challenges.

Opening keynote speaker Neil Pasricha, author of the bestselling The Book of Awesome, set the tone by dazzling delegates with ideas and concepts for living happier and more productive lives.

Partners in Prevention attendee Jeet Tulshi described the keynote session as "very motivational. Who doesn't want to be happier?"

A service director with Liberty International Underwriters, Jeet told WSPS eNews that he's been coming to Partners in Prevention for four or five years. "I always have a great time because it connects all the main stakeholders in the health and safety profession - government, health and safety consultants, labour groups, standards groups… it"s a great place to connect with health and safety professionals."

WSPS president and CEO Lynn Brownell noted that Partners in Prevention 2017 took place just after the National Day of Mourning on April 28, and days before Threads of Life's annual Steps for Life fundraising walks on behalf of families who have experienced a workplace tragedy.

"These two events are sobering reminders of what remains to be done despite the tremendous achievements that the health and safety community has already accomplished," said Brownell. "Exposing ourselves to the best practices, fresh ideas and innovative solutions at Partners in Preventions is an ideal way to invigorate our prevention efforts. It creates a sense of optimism and opportunity."

Hot and trending topics

With psychological health and safety a key thread running through many sessions, Sandra Neale's session on how GE Canada's national mental health strategy saved millions of dollars in disability costs since 2013 drew a capacity crowd. A services excellence leader at GE Canada, Sandra led delegates through the company's three-stage mental health strategy, offering insights and tips.

To help delegates prepare for the federal government imminent legalization of marijuana use, Ryan Conlin and Jeremy Schwartz, partners at Stringer LLP, led delegates through case law on drug and alcohol testing, employers' legal obligations, and policies on marijuana use.

Watch for highlights of these sessions and others in future issues of WSPS eNews.

Doing the trade show: more activities than ever

Partners in Prevention's trade show has traditionally been delegates' best opportunity to explore new workplace resources with product and service specialists trained to identify and implement solutions. This year offered even more with experiential learning pavilions including:

  • a High Risk Pavilion where delegates could attend special sessions, check out a working at heights harness while dangling in mid-air, and sign up for an "escape room" experience that tested their problem-solving skills.
  • a Distracted Driving Pavilion. Show visitors tested their skills driving a pedal-powered kart through an obstacle course of distractions while wearing impairment simulation goggles.
  • a Healthy Living Pavilion, featuring massages, cooking demos, and short, practical talks by health experts on how to live a healthier life.

Don't miss out on upcoming Partners in Prevention events

Mark the dates for Partners in Prevention 2018 in your calendar today: May 1-2, 2018. WSPS also brings regional Partners in Prevention events to communities across Ontario. Check out what's happening this fall.

A word of thanks to everyone involved in Partners in Prevention

Many organizations have a hand in bringing Partners in Prevention to life. Appearing below are the logos of our national event sponsors. We’d also like to thank the following:

Distracted Driving Pavilion

  • Ministry of Transportation
  • Canadian Pro Drivers
  • OPP
  • CAA
  • IHSA
  • Arrive Alive
  • Teens Learn To Drive

The High Risk Pavilion was presented by IHSA and sponsored by Honeywell. The Escape Box Challenge was sponsored by PCL Construction.

A special thanks to our delegates, presenters, exhibitors, staff and volunteers.


2017 sponsors