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OSHA Releases Final Guidance on Whistleblower Protection Programs

Jan 18, 2017

The Occupational Safety and Health Administration last week released final guidance on “Recommended Practices for Anti-Retaliation Programs,” which was created to assist employers in creating workplaces and policies that allow workers to raise concerns without fear of retaliation. This guidance intends to cover the 22 whistleblower protection programs administered by OSHA, which include food safety, worker safety and environmental issues.

In the guidance, OSHA identifies five key factors that compose an effective anti-retaliation program:

  • Demonstrating management leadership, commitment and accountability;
  • Establishing and maintaining a system for listening to and resolving employees’ safety and compliance concerns;
  • Creating and implementing a system for receiving and responding to reports of retaliation;
  • Providing training for employees and managers in anti-retaliation; and
  • Developing and implementing program oversight.

IDFA members are encouraged to review their company policies, procedures and training to ensure compliance with the new guidance.

Members with questions may contact Emily Lyons, IDFA director of regulatory affairs and counsel, at

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