December 18, 2017

CNESST: unreasonable delays in handling an occupational deafness claim


Une personne porte une prothèse auditive

The complaint

A man submitted a claim to the Commission des normes, de l’équité, de la santé et de la sécurité du travail (CNESST) for reimbursement for his hearing aids. After nine months without any feedback from the agency, he complained to the Québec Ombudsman.

The investigation

  • The retired citizen considered that his loss of hearing was due to the job he had had.
  • He filed a claim with the CNESST for occupational deafness, which was slow to process it.
  • The investigation by the Québec Ombudsman showed that the nine-month wait stemmed from major delays in processing this type of claim.
  • The CNESST explained that a lack of professional resources was the cause.
  • The Québec Ombudsman felt that such a lengthy delay was unreasonable and that a lack of professional resources was not an excuse.

The result

Further to the Québec Ombudsman’s intervention, the man was reimbursed for his hearing aids. Furthermore, the CNESST established a team of agents specially trained in occupational deafness claims to handle the backlog and to clear it.

The Québec Ombudsman is an independent and impartial institution which ensures that your rights are upheld in your dealings with Québec’s public services. If you have a complaint about a Government of Québec department or agency or an institution within the health and social services network (2nd line of recourse in the latter case), call us at 1-800-463-5070 or fill out our online complaint form.