Date Issued: 01/09/1986
Revision Date: 01/10/2013
To provide practical guidelines for the safe use of video display terminals in the workplace.
Video Display Terminals (VDTs) are used throughout the Saskatchewan public service. VDT means, as per the Saskatchewan Labour Code of Practice for Video Display Terminals, equipment that includes a screen that displays computer or microprocessor generated information that is utilized by an employee as part of their work. VDTs include, but are not limited to:
- Computer input or retrieval terminals for word processing or data viewing or manipulation.
- Calculators with display screens.
- Display units associated with ultrasound imaging, digital radiography, nuclear magnetic resonance, computer art, computer assisted design, process control systems, simulators and radar displays.
The following are guidelines for video display terminal operators.
Periods of Operation
Where the work demands constant and uninterrupted concentration on the screen by the operator, the employer will allow the operator five minutes of non-visual display unit work after one hour of operation and 15 minutes of non-visual display unit work after every two hours of operation. The non-visual display unit work shall take the form of a rotation of job tasks or may coincide with regular breaks.
Where an employee's assigned duties entail the regular operation of a VDT for a minimum of four hours per day, the employer will:
Provide the employee with a reasonable period of paid leave for an eye examination upon commencing work on the VDT.
Thereafter provide the employee with a reasonable period of paid leave for an eye examination if the employee experiences recurring visual problems.
The employer will pay reasonable costs associated with the eye examination to a maximum of one hundred ($100.00) dollars per examination, which are not covered by the Extended Health Care Plan.
Reassignment Due to Pregnancy (permanent and probationary employees only)
An employee who regularly operates a VDT can request either protective equipment or a temporary assignment to other duties upon the provision of a medical certificate to the permanent head of her ministry indicating that she is pregnant. Requests for reassignment will be handled in the following manner:
The temporary reassignment will take place no later than one week after the official request for temporary reassignment.
The permanent head will attempt to temporarily assign the employee to a vacant position in the same class or in an equivalent class provided the employee is qualified. If a position is not available, he/she will temporarily assign the employee to any vacant position for which the employee is qualified within the same agency and location. The Chair of the Public Service Commission shall determine equivalent class and qualifications requirements.
If the above procedure does not result in a temporary reassignment for the employee, the permanent head shall advise the Chair of the Public Service Commission, who will temporarily reassign the employee as set out above, but will not be limited to positions in the employee's agency.
The employee shall continue in the temporary assignment until the provisions pertaining to maternity leave are utilized. At such time, the temporary assignment will terminate.
If it is not practical to temporarily reassign the employee, she shall be granted a definite leave of absence without pay as follows:
If permanent with more than 20 weeks of service, the employee will be granted a definite leave of absence without pay until the beginning of her maternity leave.
If permanent with less than 20 weeks of service, the employee will be granted a definite leave of absence without pay for a period ending no later than six weeks after the date of birth.
Term employees with more than 20 weeks of service will be granted definite leave of absence without pay until the beginning of her maternity leave
Term employees with less than 20 weeks of service may elect to resign.
If an employee has a medical condition that may be affected by the use of a VDT, the employee should advise his/her supervisor at the beginning of the work assignment. Such employees are encouraged to consult their physician prior to accepting the work assignment.
PS Regs, Part 5, Article Sections 45, 67 and 82
SGEU Article 25.2
CUPE Local 600-3, Article 5.04
For inquiries, please contact the Human Resource Service Centre.
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