Province Appoints New Chief Prevention Officer

Aug 19, 2015:  Labour and Immigration Minister Erna Braun announced today that Dennis Nikkel has been appointed as the new Chief Prevention Officer.  Nikkel will be responsible for providing advice to the Manitoba government on the prevention of workplace injury and illness.

“Every worker in Manitoba deserves to come home safe at the end of the day,” said Minister Braun.  “This appointment ensures the province stays on track with the goals of Manitoba’s Five Year Plan for Workplace Injury and Illness Prevention.  The plan aims to improve services for workers and employers in an effective, fair and measurable way.”

The chief prevention officer will be responsible for:
• overseeing the continued implementation of the province’s injury and illness prevention strategy;
• ensuring public awareness and prevention activities promote understanding of and compliance with Workplace Safety and Health enforcement efforts; and
• ensuring delivery of effective public awareness programs and prevention activities.

In addition, the chief prevention officer sits on SAFE Work Manitoba’s prevention committee to help coordinate prevention activities with the mandates of the Workers Compensation Board and Manitoba government.

“All Manitobans have a role to play in reducing injury and illness,” said Nikkel.  “I’m looking forward to working with employers, workers, government and the public to make Manitoba a safer place to work.”

Nikkel has worked for the Manitoba government for 36 years, first as an environmental control officer and then as director of occupational health for Workplace Safety and Health.  He has served as chair of the Minister’s Advisory Council on Workplace Safety and Health since 2011.

“Our new chief prevention officer was selected for his long-standing commitment, expertise and experience in workplace injury and illness prevention,” said Minister Braun. “His contributions have played an integral role in laying the foundation for a number of the significant initiatives keeping workers in Manitoba safe today, and I’m pleased to welcome him to this new role.”

-Manitoba Government News Release