What Could Funding Cuts to the Labor Department Mean for Job Safety?

Equipment should always be shut down during maintenanceThe U.S. already doesn’t have enough federal inspectors to regulate job sites, and there could be even fewer available. There are proposed 21% budget cuts to the Labor department being proposed by President Trump right now. One of the programs targeted is the Susan Harwood Grant Program, which helps provide training to workers with limited English speaking.

These workers often don’t have the same access to information about their rights. In an environment where there are already people underrepresented and regulators are hard to come by, these budget cuts could mean that workplace safety knowledge is more important than ever.

Top 3 Most Important Safety Resources You Have as a Worker

  • Occupational Health and Safety Administration (OSHA): OSHA is there to protect you as a worker. You may file a complaint about workplace safety with them at any time and request that your workplace is inspected. It also requires employers to provide employees with safety training, access to safety documents, medical records, and safety test results. OSHA also provides whistleblower protection in the event that your employer tries to retaliate against you for exposing a workplace safety violation.
  • Other safety administrations: OSHA is not the only entity dedicated to workplace safety. There are many others such as: The National Safety Council, the National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health, and the International Labour Organization. There are countless websites, blogs, forums, and organizations dedicated to providing safety resources. Your employer will have their own set of safety materials for you to access as well.
  • Workers compensation attorneys: Workers comp lawyers can show you what your workplace environment should be like, and what kind of coverage you should receive in the event you are injured from a breach in safety requirements. Not all workers such as independent contractors are subject to workers’ compensation, however, an attorney will be able to help find out if you were miscategorized by your employer.

Contact Columbus workers comp attorneys at Larrimer & Larrimer, LLC for help answering questions about the safety environment in your workplace.

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