As an employer, it is your responsibility to ensure that your employees leave work at the end of the day the same way they arrived: safe and injury free. Creating a safe culture and work environment is not only the right thing to do, but it’s also good for business. Team members who feel safe are more productive. And, those who feel valued will typically stay with their companies longer. It all comes down to one simple but critical commitment: Safety first.

Your Duty Under OSHA

The Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA), the organization that sets federal workplace safety guidelines, was established in 1970. Under the auspices of the U.S. Department of Labor, OSHA is responsible for seeing that employees are protected from injury and that the right steps are taken to ensure safety in the workplace.

To remain compliant with OSHA regulations, as an employer, you must:

  • Make the right accommodations to ensure a safe work environment for each and every employee.
  • Ensure that all employees are aware of your company’s safety policies, steps and procedures.
  • Have posters detailing OSHA’s terms clearly visible in your workplace.
  • Let your employees know where they can find medical or exposure records when they are hired and, at minimum, once a year afterward.

Employees are allowed to request a review of safety-related rules and regulations, as well as exposure or medical records. If a worker feels there has been a safety lapse or violation, they may report it to OSHA. THey also have the right to have their name withheld, to avoid any threat of retaliation from their employer.

Additional OSHA requirements for employers include:

  • Conducting regular safety inspections and addressing any potential hazards.
  • Providing their employees with ongoing safety training.
  • Maintaining accurate safety records.
  • Reporting any safety incidents per OSHA guidelines.

If a Complaint is Filed

If an employee files a complaint with OSHA and it is determined that the complaint is likely justified and reasonable, a workplace inspection typically follows. A worker representative may participate in a “shadow” role. (Note: This representative cannot be selected by the employer.) After the inspection is complete, an OSHA representative meets with the employer and the worker representative to further assess the situation and how to correct related safety issues.

Prevention is the Best Medicine

As you build and maintain your injury-free culture, be sure you are aware of potential hazards at your workplace, and that you take the right preventive measures to prevent incidents.

Keeping your most valuable asset, your people, safe is your most important job – and also your biggest job. It can be a lot to handle on your own. The PrideStaff Kentucky team can help, from designing and implementing training and awareness programs to developing an effective, ongoing safety approach. Contact us today to learn more.

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