Under the Occupational Safety and Health Act (OSHA) of 1970, employees are entitled to work in a safe workplace. This means employers should take necessary actions in order to protect their employees from foreseeable and preventable harm.
OSHA was enforced in order to spare employees from injuries or death while they are working. It also created the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA), which is the agency responsible in making and implementing different health and safety standards.
This law sets rules which specify that different methods employers should use in order to protect everyone in the workplace, including themselves. There are standards that need to be followed by employers who are engaged in maritime operations, construction work, and the general industry. The rules that are applied in each sector depend on the nature of work which is done by employees and the kind of place where they work in.
Although the rules that are being enforced are different in every sector, all of them require employers to use certain equipments, implement safety practices, monitor and record all workplace illnesses and injuries, and remove anything which can cause harm to employees.
Employers who were informed of safety problems should try to remove it by changing the work conditions, not by requiring employees to wear ear plugs, gloves, masks, or other protective gears. Here are some examples on how they can effectively solve these problems:
- Use safe chemicals instead of harmful ones
- Use ventilation systems which can effectively clean the air
- Enclose processes in order to contain harmful flumes
In addition, employers can avoid facing an OSHA complaint if they do the following:
- Notify their employees regarding hazards through alarms, labels, chemical information sheets, color-coded systems, and trainings
- Conduct regular tests and inspection in the workplace like air sampling and equipment maintenance
- Provide necessary medical tests to their employees
- Immediately notify OSHA if an employee was killed or at least three others were injured in a workplace accident
Filing a Complaint
If you think that you were subjected to unsafe working conditions, you have the right to file a complaint with OSHA so that the problem can be solved immediately. You can ask the agency to inspect the workplace if your employer refuses to remove the hazards that are in it.
You can file a complaint without the fear of being terminated, transferred, demoted, or discriminated. Your employer is prohibited from treating you differently or unfairly after you have filed a complaint against him.
For more questions regarding OSHA and your rights under it, it is advisable that you contact a Los Angeles labor attorney.