Groups Seek Changes in OSHRC Procedures

Their petition seeks an expanded definition of "affected employee" and clarification that an employee may designate any person as his or her representative.

The National Council for Occupational Safety and Health (National COSH) and allied organizations recently filed a petition before the U.S. Occupational Safety and Health Review Commission (OSHRC), calling for more worker and public participation in the commission's proceedings. The petition lists three changes it seeks:

  • Expand OSHRC's definition of "affected employee," saying the definition is too narrow because multi-employer work sites and the use of contract, leased, or temporary employees are increasingly common in many industries, not just construction.
  • Clarify that an employee may designate any person as his or her representative.
  • Narrow the scope of confidentiality during settlement proceedings.

"Workers know best how to prevent the hazards that cause injuries, illnesses, and death on the job," said Mary Vogel, executive director of National COSH. "To make sure our workplaces are safer, workers' voices must be heard loud and clear. And we need to shine as much light as possible on what is too often hidden from view – the unsafe practices that put workers at unnecessary risk on every shift, day and night, every day of the week."

"For 44 years, the OSH Act has explicitly given workers the clear right to be involved when employers appeal OSHA citations," said Eric Frumin, Health and Safety director for the labor union coalition Change to Win. "As conditions change and employers try to narrow worker participation, the commission must keep its rules current and preserve this fundamental right."

"When employees appear before the Review Commission, they should get a fair shake and be full participants," said Randy Rabinowitz, co-director of the Occupational Safety and Health Law Project, who signed the petition.

National COSH reported that OSHRC is currently considering revisions to its procedural rules. National COSH joined North America's Building Trades Unions, Change to Win, and the United Steelworkers in backing the petition.

Download Center

  • Lone Worker Safety Guide

    As organizations digitalize and remote operations become more commonplace, the number of lone workers is on the rise. These employees are at increased risk for unaddressed workplace accidents or emergencies. This guide was created to help employers better understand common lone worker risks and solutions for lone worker risk mitigation and incident prevention.

  • Online Safety Training Buyer's Guide

    Use this handy buyer's guide to learn the basics of selecting online safety training and how to use it at your workplace.

  • COVID Return-to-Work Checklist, Fall 2021

    Use this checklist as an aid to help your organization return to work during the COVID-19 pandemic in a safe and healthy manner.

  • SDS Buyer's Guide

    Learn to make informed decisions while searching for SDS Management Software.

  • Risk Matrix Guide

    Risk matrices come in many different shapes and sizes. Understanding the components of a risk matrix will allow you and your organization to manage risk effectively.

  • Industry Safe

Featured Whitepapers

OH&S Digital Edition

  • OHS Magazine Digital Edition - November December 2021

    November December 2021

    Featuring:

    • GAS DETECTION
      How to Streamline Gas Detector Maintenance
    • OSHA TOP 10
      OSHA's Top 10 Most Frequently Cited Standards for FY 2021
    • PROTECTIVE APPAREL
      How PPE Can Help You Deal with the Harsh Condition of Winter
    • HEARING PROTECTION
      Tackling Hearing Protection in the Workplace
    View This Issue