Oregon OSHA Clarifies Policies on Temp Companies
A revised program directive contains inspection criteria that apply to temporary service providers and worker leasing companies.
Oregon OSHA recently posted a revised program directive
for its personnel that contains inspection criteria they will apply to temporary service providers and worker leasing companies. This is the most recent revision of several since Program Directive A-246 originated in 2001.
The document spells out in detail the duties of host employers and temp agencies. For example, it says that staffing agencies that send employees to host locations "need to provide initial awareness training to employees on fall protection, machine guarding, lockout/tagout, hazard communication and other basic requirements of the occupational safety and health standards." These staffing agencies "share responsibilities for their workers' safety and must take reasonable steps to ensure that the host employer conducts the appropriate hazard assessment and provides adequate PPE. The worker leasing company or the temporary service provider should become familiar with the hazards at the host employer's worksite and maintain communication with its workers and the host employer. Such pre-planning and ongoing communication alerts them to persistent or newly-created workplace hazards that may need to be addressed," it states.
In addition, when the worker leasing company or the temporary service provider has direct workers' compensation coverage for the host employer, the leasing company or temporary service provider is responsible for completing and filing the DCBS Form 801 for all injuries to leased or temporary workers within seven calendar days after knowledge of an injury, and there is a joint responsibility of the worker leasing company or the temporary service provider and the host employer to investigate accidents -- all lost-time injuries must be investigated, it states.
Temporary service providers and leasing companies must have their own safety committee or hold safety meetings for their staff (other than those who work for a host employer), according to the directive.
The document defines an administrative service organization as "a company that provides administrative services as they relate to a host employer's responsibilities regarding their employees," adding that ASO services outsource payroll and human resource departments for businesses that use host employer tax identification numbers, which is different from a worker leasing company that uses the worker leasing company's tax identification numbers. A temporary service provider is defined as a staffing provider that provides workers to a client by contract and for a fee, having current written documentation describing the work being provided on a temporary basis. Temporary service providers are not required to be licensed, it says.
The definition of a worker leasing company is "a licensed company, commonly known as a professional employer organization (PEO) that provides workers by contract and for a fee to work for a client. It does not include a company that provides workers to a client on a temporary basis."
The section defining a host employer's responsibilities says that the general assumption is that the host employer directs and controls the workers. The host employer is responsible for controlling and correcting all hazards employees are exposed to at the workplace and also responsible for site-specific training of all workers at the workplace (including a site-specific Hazard Communication program, lockout/tagout procedures for equipment and machinery they work with at the workplace, and the PPE to be used and maintained at the workplace).
And the host employer is required to report accidents to Oregon OSHA, but when the agency receives a report from the worker leasing company or the temporary service provider, that notice is acceptable. (Effective Jan. 1, 2016, Oregon's new rule on recordkeeping and injury reporting will be in effect.)