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Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA)

Self Description

August 2002: "The mission of the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) is to save lives, prevent injuries and protect the health of America's workers. To accomplish this, federal and state governments must work in partnership with the more than 100 million working men and women and their six and a half million employers who are covered by the Occupational Safety and Health Act of 1970....OSHA and its state partners have approximately 2100 inspectors, plus complaint discrimination investigators, engineers, physicians, educators, standards writers, and other technical and support personnel spread over more than 200 offices throughout the country. This staff establishes protective standards, enforces those standards, and reaches out to employers and employees through technical assistance and consultation programs."

Third-Party Descriptions

March 2015: 'The changes have forced injured workers’ families and taxpayers “to subsidize the vast majority of the lost income and medical care costs generated by these conditions,” the Occupational Safety and Health Administration said in a report issued Wednesday that echoed several of ProPublica and NPR’s findings.'

May 2010: "Even the head of the federal Occupational Safety and Health Administration acknowledges that his agency’s 20th-century rules have not yet caught up with the 21st-century biotech industry."

May 2010: "For example, last year the Occupational Safety and Health Administration found more than 700 violations at the Texas City refinery — many concerning faulty valves, which are critical for safety given the high temperatures and pressures. The agency fined BP a record $87.4 million, which was more than four times the previous record fine, also to BP, for the 2005 explosion."

November 2009: "Employers and workers routinely underreport work-related injuries and illnesses, calling into question the accuracy of nationwide data that the Occupational Safety and Health Administration compiles each year, the Government Accountability Office said Monday."

December 2008: "Current and former career officials at OSHA say that such sagas were a recurrent feature during the Bush administration, as political appointees ordered the withdrawal of dozens of workplace health regulations, slow-rolled others, and altered the reach of its warnings and rules in response to industry pressure."

July 2008: "(UWIRE) -- Princeton University's policy of not allowing its officers to carry guns on campus doesn't hurt the officers' ability to do their jobs, the Occupational Safety and Health Administration ruled."

April 2007: Since George W. Bush became president, OSHA has issued the fewest significant standards in its history, public health experts say. It has imposed only one major safety rule. The only significant health standard it issued was ordered by a federal court.

Date Unknown: Consistent application of a policy is an issue behind a recent lawsuit that arose after Ameritech Corp. asked three of its telephone line technicians to lose the jewelry, or lose the job. The company claimed that facial jewelry could be a potential safety hazard. The employees fought the 'safety-based' policy and were subsequently suspended without pay. The workers filed grievances with their union and are taking part in an in-house investigation. The Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA), a government agency designed to protect workers on the job, said people working near electric lines, including telephone workers, should refrain from wearing all types of jewelry. Unfortunately, Ameritech's current policy only attacks non-traditional facial piercings, and not ear piercings or other jewelry. The suspended linemen have stated that they would return to work if the policy applied to all jewelry and to all employees, a change that would follow the OSHA rules to the letter.

February 2006: They come just days before the Occupational Safety and Health Administration is to announce its new standard for workplace exposure to hexavalent chromium -- a known carcinogen handled by 380,000 U.S. workers in the steel, aerospace, electroplating and other industries.


RoleNameTypeLast Updated
Owned by (partial or full, past or present) Department of Labor/Labor Department (DOL) Organization May 16, 2005
Possible/Unclear National Advisory Committee on Occupational Safety and Health (NACOSH) Organization Jan 26, 2012
Organization Executive (past or present) Ross Eisenbrey J.D. Person Sep 28, 2007
Organization Head/Leader (past or present) Edwin G. Foulke Jr., Esq. Person Apr 27, 2007
Organization Head/Leader (past or present) John L. Henshaw Person Jan 7, 2009
Research/Analysis Subject Organization Head/Leader (past or present) Prof. David M. Michaels Ph.D., MPH Person May 28, 2010

Articles and Resources

30 Articles and Resources. Go to:  [Previous 20]

Date Resource Read it at:
Feb 01, 2005 OSHA Slow to Act on Beryllium Exposure, Critic Says

QUOTE: For several years, Adam M. Finkel, a top administrator at the Labor Department's Occupational Safety and Health Administration, said he expected the agency to test its inspectors for exposure to beryllium fumes or dust. In 2002, he realized the agency was not moving in that direction, and he became a whistle-blower.

Washington Post
Nov 09, 2004 OSHA Slow to Issue Standards, Critics Charge

QUOTE: ...the National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health, asked that an emergency standard be written to limit workers' exposure to the chemical compound...the institute recommended that hexavalent chromium be considered carcinogenic and a cause of liver and kidney tumors and central nervous system effects...Nevertheless, the NIOSH entreaty went unanswered.

Washington Post
Jun 01, 2004 Small-Business Owners Say They're Up to OSHA's Challenge

QUOTE: ...give employers more time to fight citations, make it easier to recoup legal fees if they win a case against OSHA, and not allow the agency to have the final word in how a standard is applied.

Washington Post
Dec 23, 2003 When Workers Die: California Leads Proesecution of Employers in Job Deaths

QUOTE: ...small team of circuit-riding prosecutors who are crusading to transform the Wild West mores of rural California, a culture they regard as far too tolerant of death on the job.

New York Times
Jul 14, 2003 Asbestos Bill Could Be Windfall for Business

QUOTE: The Senate has taken a major step toward setting up a national fund to compensate people whose health has been ruined by asbestos, but the first and biggest beneficiaries of the plan may be companies such as Halliburton...

Los Angeles Times
May 28, 2003 New Occupational Hazards: Health Threats Plague Traditionally Safe and Not-So-Safe Jobs Alike

QUOTE: But while some jobs have always been pretty dismal because they are dirty, smelly, hazardous or pay poorly, the emergence of new kinds of health risks -- from terrorism to SARS -- are making some formerly good jobs bad, and some formerly bad jobs awful.

Washington Post
May 15, 2003 Criminal Inquiry Under Way at Large Pipe Manufacturer

ABSTRACT: The company has been cited for more than 400 safety violations and 450 environmental violations since 1995... a disjointed and fragmented regulatory apparatus repeatedly failed to detect, much less end, patterns of misconduct.

New York Times
Aug 05, 2002 Government Asked to Act On Teenagers' Job Safety

QUOTE: With nearly four million teenagers at work across the nation this summer, many health safety experts say it is time for the government to revise its 60-year-old list of jobs barred to young people because they are too dangerous.

New York Times
Feb 06, 2001 Beatings and Other Abuses Cited at Samoan Apparel Plant that Supplied U.S. Retailers

QUOTE: Workers at a factory in American Samoa that made apparel for the J. C. Penney Company and other retailers were often beaten and were provided food so inadequate that some were "walking skeletons," a Labor Department investigation has found.

New York Times
Jan 01, 1111 Body Art in the Workplace

QUOTE: Men and women flaunt pierced navels at the beach, sterling silver glinting in the sun. Tattoo parlors have popped up in suburban areas....Companies can limit employees' personal expression on the job as long as they do not impinge on their civil liberties.

30 Articles and Resources. Go to:  [Previous 20]