June 13, 2017 | Joe Geng |

Changes to OSHA Regulations, and What That Means for You



The Occupational Health and Safety Administration (OSHA) is in place to keep workers safe from all potential hazards within the workplace.

Keeping workers safe should be a top priority for all parties.

The current U.S. Administration is updating and revising previous regulations. Learn how your workers and you benefit from these OSHA safety regulations.

 
Fair Pay Safe Workspaces

 

OSHA’s Current Situation

As an agency of the United States Department of Labor, they have the jurisdiction across all of the United States.

So, if requested by a worker, or an incident occurred, OSHA will pay a visit to their work site.

They will then inspect, make recommendations, and potentially fine the organization in question. OSHA holds companies responsible for safer job sites.

There has been a lot of talk about  this administration’s impact on OSHA’s regulations and rules.

OSHA has also faced some heat for posting the accidents and fatalities of workers on their website. Prospective employees and other employers have said that knowing about this injuries and fatalities is good. It puts the companies in the spotlight and forces them to make safety a top priority.

Currently, OSHA’s goal is to ensure your workers and you are safe. An as employer it is your responsibility to ensure that your employees go home at the end of the day.

 
According to U.S. President Donald Trump, excessive regulations are killing jobs. His administration suggests fewer regulations and more opportunities to create jobs in skilled trades.

 

 

Here are the Potential Changes:

 

Budget Cuts:

It’s possible that the Department of Labor could see roughly a 2.5 billion dollar budget cut. 

Some of which directly impacts OSHA. That money goes towards keeping workers safe.

The money that OSHA receives also ensures employers are held accountable for the safety of their workers.

 

Changes in Regulations

Nearly 4,000 regulations could be overturned, including:

    • Increased penalty: Workplace violations could jump from $70,000 to roughly $124,000.
    • Respirable silica: The goal is to limit worker exposure to respirable crystalline silica,  a combination of soil, sand and granite. It’s known to cause cancer and plenty of other diseases. The change attached to this regulation is that the U.S Administration does not see enough reason, or ways, to efficiently regulate the amount of silica in the air.
    • Record-keeping rule: Employers are to track illnesses and injuries and record them online. This holds them accountable and keeps them up to date with what is happening at the job site.
    • Union representatives participating in OSHA inspections: Currently union reps attend walk-through inspections of job sites with OSHA reps, even if the company is a non-union organization.  The reasoning behind having a union rep is to represent the employees of the company under evaluation. If this changes, there will be no union representatives walking through the workplace helping ensure your crew is safe.

     

    Fair Pay and Safe Workplaces 

    The Fair Pay and Safe Workplace regulation is for any company that has been awarded government contracts worth more than $500,000.

    Then they will have to disclose any past violations of labor laws. The order also asks agencies to create standards for assessing those violations deemed serious, repeated or willful.

    It does not stop those companies from getting these contracts either. If efforts are made to keep workers safe, this should be a non-issue.

    Under the new administration, more companies with violations will be able to apply for the contracts, and they will not have to adhere to previous restrictions.

    Construction workers going over plans

     

    So, What Does it Mean?

    OSHA may shift its work from enforcing rules and regulations to compliance strategy.

    By helping in the creation of cooperative programs for employers.

    The responsibility of worker safety is already on the employer, but with these new regulations, it forces the employers to be more diligent with worker safety and make sure that everyone is safe, regardless if there are fewer rules and regulations in places.

    While there has been no set date for the potential changes. Soon you’ll start to see a few of them come into play. Most recently the Fair Pay and Work Safe rule has already been nullified.

     

    Looking for more ways to make your workplace safe?

    Explore our PPE bible.

     
    PPE guide

     

    Joe Geng
    About Joe Geng
    Vice President of Superior Glove

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