Labour Minister Harry Bains has appointed RCMP officer Baltej Dhillon and four other members to WorkSafeBC’s board of directors.Ralph McGinn has been appointed as the new board chair for WorkSafeBC.
Dhillon, who has been given a three-year term appointment as law enforcement professional, has served as a police officer for the past 27 years. In 2016, he became responsible for the force’s Operational Readiness and Response program related to emergency response.
In addition to the new chair, Lee Loftus, Baltej Dhillon and Kay Teschke have been appointed as new board members, effective immediately. Margaret McNeil, a current board member whose term ended December 1, 2017, has been reappointed for two years.As well, current members who will continue on the board are Lynn Bueckert, Brooks Patterson, Alan Cooke and Lillian White.
The government said the appointments have been made following rigorous interviews and careful consideration of the experience and skills needed to deliver a new vision for British Columbia’s workers’ compensation system.
The total number of board members has been maintained at nine, which includes the representation of workers, employers and the public interest, as well as professionals from a range of relevant fields including health care, occupational health and safety, and law enforcement.
Dhillon has created the Sikh Leadership and Police Committee on Gang Violence and led the project for two years to fight against youth criminalization. He has served as an investigator on Air India task forces and the Pickton investigation.
He received a Queen Elizabeth II Diamond Jubilee Medal for community service in 2012 and a Queen Elizabeth II Golden Jubilee Award for community service in 2003.
In 1991, Dhillon became the first member of the RCMP permitted to wear a turban as part of his Sikh religion. His request that the RCMP change its uniform rules sparked a national debate about religious accommodation in Canada.