IDFA continued this week to oppose efforts by the Occupational Safety and Health Administration to require all records on workplace injuries and illnesses to be published on the OSHA website. In a joint letter sent this week, IDFA and 64 other associations and businesses urged the agency to withdraw the proposed regulation.
The proposed rule would amend recordkeeping regulations for companies, requiring them to file electronic reports with injury and illness information that employers currently keep under existing OSHA regulations. Employers with 250 or more employees would have to file every three months and companies with 20 or more employees in high-risk industries would be required to file reports once a year. OSHA would then post the raw data on the agency's public website, identifying everything but the names of employees.
No Indication Current Requirements Are Ineffective
“In both notices that comprise this rulemaking, OSHA has exceeded the bounds of its statutory authority, and in this supplemental notice, the Agency attempts to proscribe activity in a manner that Congress clearly never intended,” said the letter from the Coalition for Workplace Safety. “There is no indication that the current recordkeeping requirements in place are ineffective.”
In individual comments submitted to OSHA earlier this year, IDFA expressed concern that the raw data would be misunderstood, misused and harmful to the companies required to submit the records.
Each year OSHA collects data on reported injuries from 80,000 business facilities. The agency currently uses the information to guide its inspections and to encourage companies to investigate causes and determine ways to prevent future injuries.
In recent years, OSHA has encouraged companies to focus efforts on leading or future indicators, which provide valuable performance feedback prior to an incident occurring. However, the coalition believes that the proposed rule appears to signal “significant reversals in long-standing OSHA policies and positions.”
For more information, members may contact Clay Hough, senior group vice president for IDFA, at firstname.lastname@example.org.