07/29/2013 01:36 EDT | Updated 09/28/2013 05:12 EDT

Nova Scotia labour minister proposes new fines for workplace violations

HALIFAX - The government of Nova Scotia is proposing new penalties such as escalating fines for employers and employees who repeatedly break workplace safety rules.

Labour Minister Frank Corbett released a discussion paper today that he says aims to crack down on companies that put workers at risk.

The paper proposes a structured fine schedule that would see the province levy higher fines for repeat offenders.

Corbett says the government also wants to focus on prevention of workplace safety violations, adding that inspectors would be called upon to educate employers and employees for infractions considered to be less serious.

The Labour Department is seeking public feedback on the proposed changes until Sept. 26.