OSHA Seeks Feedback for Controversial Proposal on Reporting Injuries, Illnesses

OshaThe Occupational Safety and Health Administration will be extending the comment period on the proposed rule to improve tracking of workplace injuries and illnesses.

OSHA has moved the date to Oct. 14, and the proposal, which was published in November of last year, would amend the agency’s record-keeping regulation to add requirements for the electronic submission of injury and illness information that employers are already required to keep.

In a public meeting, many individuals expressed concern that employers would under-record injuries and illnesses, since each establishment’s data would become publicly available on OSHA’s website.

Additionally, individuals also expressed concern that the proposal would lead to an increase in the number of employers who adopt practices that discourage employees from reporting recordable injuries and illnesses.

“OSHA wants to make sure that employers, employees and the public have access to the most accurate data about injuries and illnesses in their workplaces so that they can take the most appropriate steps to protect worker safety and health,” says Assistant Secretary of Labor for Occupational Safety and Health Dr. David Michaels.

Because of this, OSHA is asking for comments to: 1) require that employers inform their employees of their right to report injuries and illnesses; 2) more clearly communicate the requirement that any injury and illness reporting requirements established by the employer be reasonable and not unduly burdensome; and 3) provide OSHA an additional remedy to prohibit employers from taking adverse action against employees for reporting injuries and illnesses.

Individuals can submit comments electronically at the federal e-Rulemaking Portal

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