Written on Thursday, July 23, 2009
The very simple answer to this is yes. OSHA standards are set with very strict guidelines to ensure safety and well-being in the workplace. Almost every place of employment will have an OSHA inspection at least once a year. They will also be inspected if complaints have been filed that people are not following OSHA standards and guidelines. Every workplace will have their own set of rules and guidelines when it comes to OSHA standards. When guidelines are not being followed, that is taken very seriously. Violating OSHA standards is a serious issue.
Employers have a duty under the OSHA Act to provide their employees with a healthy and safe place of work. This act is a federal act that requires employers to follow certain requirements pertaining to OSHA Standards.
An employer has the responsibility to make sure that their personnel have knowledge of the OSHA Act. They should also have an appointed safety and health specialist. Copies of OSHA standards should be given to employees upon request. It is part of an employees rights through the OSHA Act to have a copy of OSHA standards and guidelines.
The employer should have a certain person or a group of people analyze OSHA standards. This is to determine how they are being utilized within the company, and if the employer complies with all guidelines. The more employees are involved with OSHA guidelines, the more they can help in holding their employer responsible for policy non-compliance. Although this is the case, the employers themselves need to critically examine the safety and health conditions throughout the facility. An important part of this is doing walk-throughs to ensure that employees are properly using safety equipment and adhering to OSHA standards.
An employer has the obligation to establish safe working rules and procedures that are reviewed periodically. If OSHA standards are not being met, there is an obligation for employers to strengthen problem areas and implement discipline procedures for any employee not in compliance with OSHA standards.
An employer must not only follow OSHA standards, it is their responsibility to make sure they are implemented by the employees. All accidents requiring hospitalization of five or more employees or death have to be reported within 48 hours. An employer must cooperate with OSHA inspectors when they come to a place of work to perform an inspection.
There is supposed to be a poster available in any work place that states a worker’s rights as they pertain to OSHA standards and the OSHA Act. If you feel that your boss is not adhering to OSHA standards you have the right as an employee to turn them in. If they are investigated and found to be guilty of OSHA non-compliance, they will be cited properly.
If you feel that your employer is not adhering to OSHA standards, you should approach them first. It is an issue of employee and employer safety. IF they continue to not follow guidelines further action should be taken to make sure the issue is reported to OSHA. The appropriate actions will be taken at that time.