We can all agree that working in a safe environment is vital in order to get the job done. Workplace safety should not only be important to employees, but also to employers, as it is their responsibility to maintain a safe and healthy work environment. According to the Occupational Safety Health Administration (OSHA), about 4,600 workers were killed on the job in 2012, and many other injuries occur each year, many of which could be prevented. There are many laws that protect employees when they get injured on the job, and it is the employer’s job to report all workplace injuries to the Occupational Safety Health Administration. I want to share some tips with you that can help encourage safety in the workplace and also prevent any injuries.
According to the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA), about 2 million employees are victims of workplace violence each year, and that’s not including cases that go unreported. But what is defined as “workplace violence”? Workplace violence is any act or threat of physical being, harassment, intimidation, or other threatening behavior that occurs at a work setting. A work setting is any location, either temporary or permanent, where an employee performs work duties. Those who can be affected are employees, customers, clients, and even employers. Some examples of workplace violence are beatings, psychological traumas, threats, obscene phone calls, intimidation, being followed, insulted, shouted at, etc.
The Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) organization requires employers with 10 or more employees who are not in an exempt industry to record and report work-related injuries and illnesses. Exempt employers are generally those in non-manual labor environments such as an Accounting firm. Companies who operate in manufacturing, agricultural, and other manual labor industries will be required to report.
On Tuesday, November 10th Congress officially passed a budget agreement containing a provision allowing OSHA to increase fines by over 80% starting August 2016. The law permits an increase of up to 82% because fines have not been raised since 1990. The raise in fines is being described as a “catch up” amount in order to account for the inflation rate from 1990 to 2015. The catch up adjustment is tied to the percentage difference between the October 2015 Consumer Price Index (CPI) and the October 1990 CPI.