HR Support on OSHA Regulations

Editor's Note: Create a safe and healthy place of employment.

Ashley ShawOverview: The Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) is the division of the Department of Labor in charge of creating and enforcing workplace safety and health. With limited exceptions, OSHA regulates almost all private industry workers in states that do not have their own, OSHA-approved state plan.

OSHA creates regulations for several specific industries, as well as general regulations for all industries; it conducts inspections of workplaces to make sure employers are complying with applicable standards; and it issues citations for violations. To make compliance easier, OSHA also offers many compliance programs to help employers create safer workplaces and to encourage and recognize the workplaces that go above and beyond, as well as to put extra pressure on those workplaces that consistently fail to follow the regulations.

Along with the health and safety regulations, OSHA also has several recordkeeping and posting requirements that almost all regulated employers must follow. Most employers that fall under OSHA must fill out the OSHA logs every year, as well as post a total injury and illness record in a conspicuous place every year from February 1 to April 30. At all times, employers must have the OSHA Job Safety and Health: It's the Law poster hanging in the workplace.

Trends: OSHA recently updated its Hazard Communication Standard to better conform to the Globally Harmonized System. With a series of rolling deadlines, employers need to update their written programs, training requirements, safety data sheets and labels and warnings.

Author: Ashley Shaw, JD, Legal Editor

Latest items in Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA)

  • OSHA Recordkeeping Requirements Trumped by FMLA Confidentiality Provisions

    Date:
    30 October 2014
    Type:
    News

    The Occupational Safety and Health Review Commission (OSHRC) has ruled that the confidentiality provisions of the Family Medical Leave Act (FMLA) supersede an employer's duty to record injuries and illnesses as required by the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) in Secretary of Labor v. United States Postal Service.

  • California Changes Cal/OSHA Abatement Law

    Date:
    14 October 2014
    Type:
    News

    California Governor Jerry Brown signed into law an amendment that changes the way the California Division of Health and Safety (DOSH, better known as Cal/OSHA) may grant modifications to civil penalties for abatements or to give credit for abatements for violations. The law will go into effect on January 1, 2015.

  • Whistleblowing Handbook Statement

    Type:
    Employee Handbooks

    Employers seeking to promote an atmosphere where employees are comfortable reporting illegal or unethical behavior internally and to help ensure that they are not retaliated against for doing so should consider including this model policy statement in their handbook.

  • Workplace Violence Handbook Statement

    Type:
    Employee Handbooks

    Employers seeking to communicate to employees that workplace violence is unacceptable and will not be tolerated should consider including this model policy statement in their handbook.

  • Emergency Evacuation Handbook Statement

    Type:
    Employee Handbooks

    Employers who want to provide an overview of the evacuation procedures set forth in a written emergency action plan should consider including this model policy statement in their handbook.

  • Cell Phone Use / Texting While Driving Handbook Statement

    Type:
    Employee Handbooks

    Employers with employees who drive for work-related purposes, use a company-issued electronic device while driving or who are likely to use a personal device for work-related reasons while driving should consider including this model policy statement in their handbook.

  • SEC Awards Whistleblower $30 Million

    Date:
    26 September 2014
    Type:
    News

    The Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) announced this week an expected $30 million award to an individual who provided key information on ongoing fraud - the largest-ever whistleblower award under its whistleblower program.

  • OSHA Announces Top 10 Violations of 2014

    Date:
    22 September 2014
    Type:
    News

    OSHA announced a preliminary list of the top 10 most frequently cited violations that occurred in fiscal year 2014.

  • OSHA Finalizes New Recordkeeping Requirements: Employment Law Manual and FAQs Updated

    Date:
    16 September 2014
    Type:
    Editor's Choice

    OSHA finalized a new rule on injury and illness recordkeeping and reporting. XpretHR updated the Employment Law Manual and FAQs with this new rule.

  • Date:
    16 September 2014
    Type:
    Legal Timetable