Ontario legislation to improve washroom access for truckers

Truck drivers and delivery workers often find it difficult to access washrooms while they work long hours on the road.

The Ontario government intends to introduce legislation that would, if passed, allow delivery workers access to company washrooms at businesses where they are delivering or picking up items, according to a news release.

Picture of a truck at a loading dock
Truck drivers are often denied use of a washroom at businesses they serve, consultations found. (Photo: iStock)

Consultations conducted by the Ontario Workforce Recovery Advisory Committee have indicated that truck drivers, couriers, and people who deliver food, including those for online delivery platform companies such as SkipTheDishes, are often denied use of a washroom at businesses they serve.

Details were shared Wednesday by Monte McNaughton, minister of labor, training and skills development.

“This is something most people in Ontario take for granted but access to washrooms is a matter of common decency currently being denied to hundreds of thousands of workers in this province,” McNaughton said.

“Workers who deliver and pick up goods have been on the frontlines of the pandemic, ensuring that essential supplies continue to reach the people of Ontario. Providing these hardworking men and women with access to washrooms is a small change that will make a big difference, so they can do their jobs with the dignity and respect they deserve.”

The announcement is part of the government’s broader efforts to protect and support vulnerable workers, such as those who have kept essential goods moving and the economy going through the pandemic.

At the start of the pandemic, the government opened additional rest stops for truck drivers to provide them with more places to safely stop and keep critical products moving. The proposed change is another step by the government to show respect and fairness to hardworking truck drivers and couriers.

 

 

Leo Barros is the associate editor of Today’s Trucking. He has been a journalist for more than two decades, holds a CDL and has worked as a longhaul truck driver. Reach him at leo@newcom.ca