Ohio workplaces are hopefully getting safer, in part because our state recently added $44 million in new state programs designed to improve wellness and safety for Ohio workers. This was announced in April by the Lt. Governor Mary Taylor and the Ohio Bureau of Workers’ Compensation (BWC) administrator Sarah Morrison.
The wellness program has special plans, including offering $6 million more annually for firefighters for additional protective equipment and $2 million for people who work with disabled individuals. Another $6 million is allotted for small businesses that employ less than 50 people, and this includes allowances for stopping smoking programs and health coaching to combat chronic diseases.
In addition to the investment in safety, the program also will offer rebates for public and private employers who pay into the state workers’ comp insurance. It is expected that over 200,000 employers will receive rebates. The program is entitled “The Third Billion Back” and the details can be found here. Eligibility to receive a rebate is still being sorted out, but those requirements should be posted on bwc.ohio.gov soon. The rebates are from positive investments by the BWC, who wants to give back to the businesses that have been paying into the State Insurance Fund.
At our law firm, we represent injured workers before the BWC, and we applaud the idea of investing in better safety standards and programs that further the goal of reducing workplace accidents and injuries. Every day, working people put their lives and livelihoods on the line to grow our state’s economy, which has a nationwide positive effect. In turn, the state and BWC should do everything possible to make sure people do not get injured on the job, and if they are, that those workers get the help they need and are compensated to the greatest extent possible.
Columbus workers compensation attorneys at Larrimer & Larrimer, LLC for can help with your workplace safety concerns.