From Cliff Gerbick, CSP (The Reserves Network Director of Safety)
Each year towards the end of April, the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) holds a remembrance ceremony for Workers Memorial Day. During this time, OSHA remembers those workers who lost their lives on the job and recommits to making worksites safer.
However, this year, in addition to the remembrance service, OSHA introduced an initiative to protect temporary workers in the workforce. OSHA sent a memo to all regional administrators who assess field operations directing field inspectors “to assess whether employers who use temporary workers are complying with their responsibilities under the Occupational Safety and Health Act.”
This memo comes on the heels of a recently published Standard Interpretation that clarified who in the temporary agency/host employer is responsible for what aspects of required safety and health education. That standard interpretation can be found at by (CLICKING HERE: osha.gov)
OSHA has long held that temporary agencies are required to provide general safety and health training while host employers are required to provide site specific training on potential hazards and risks. Those responsibilities are not changing; OSHA is simply putting and emphasis on ensuring that both parties are fulfilling their obligations under the OSH Act.
Compliance Safety and Health Offices (CSHO’s), commonly referred to as OSHA Inspectors, are instructed to identify employers that utilize temporary workers and “assess whether temporary workers received required training in a language and vocabulary they could understand.”
Additionally, OSHA has begun working with the American Staffing Association (ASA), the largest trade association representing the U.S. staffing industry, in order to better promote best practices and provide education to both staffing agencies and host employees on OSHA requirements and employee training.
For more information on the OSHA Initiative, please visit (LINK: osha.gov)
For more information on the American Staffing Associating, please visit (LINK: americanstaffing.net)
Cliff Gerbick is the Director of Safety for The Reserves Network, a provider of “Total Staffing Solutions” in the office, industrial, professional and technical markets. To contact Cliff, email cgerbick@TRNstaffing.com.
Visit the The Reserves Network’s website at www.TRNstaffing.com.
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