Workers' Compensation Safety Board of Nova Scotia

Recognizing 100 Years of Service

On January 1, 1917, two years after the province’s first Workers’ Compensation Act was proclaimed, WCB Nova Scotia opened for business. 

In Canada, workers’ compensation is built on The Meredith Principles, recommended by Sir William Meredith in 1913. They include the concept of collective liability among employers, and the compromise of injured workers giving up the right to sue for a financially guaranteed system of no-fault benefits. While WCB Nova Scotia and its mandate have evolved over the last century, the Meredith Principles still guide our work today.

In those 100 years, there have been some great strides in building a safety culture in Nova Scotia. Workplace injuries are down, and there are thousands fewer injuries, and hundreds of thousands fewer days lost to injury than a decade ago. We’re also seeing momentum in industry safety leadership, and the power of everyone working together to create a safer province. WCB Nova Scotia continues to move closer to financial sustainability. While we recognize the progress that has been made, there’s much more work to be done. 

We accept and embrace that our future must be very different. We are modernizing our service for a changing world through a business transformation that will better position us to deal with the impact of workplace injury, and make it easier for employers and workers to do business with us. 

Over the last century, together with Nova Scotians, we have helped to create a safer province to work and live.  And as we embark into another century, we remember the progress we’ve made and use it to renew our commitment and dedication to making sure every worker comes home safe at the end of the day. 

photo historic fishing disaster636251998351352860

Taken from the 1926 Annual Report: Fishing has historically been one of the most dangerous occupations in the province. However, we've seen progress. Industry employer rates are at their lowest point in 20 years, time-loss injuries are roughly half of what they were in 2010, and in 2016 no one drowned in commercial fishing.