The American Industrial Hygiene Association (AIHA) released its recommendations yesterday on how to make OSHA more effective in protecting worker health and safety in the United States, as well as other recommendations for worker safety abroad.
"AIHA''s members play an important role on the front-line of occupational health and safety. As such, AIHA believes all parties (government, employees and employers) should begin to discuss the changing workplace and expansion of the global economy and assume a lead role in offering recommendations to address occupational health and safety in the 21st century," said AIHA President James Thornton.
Some of AIHA''s recommendations for OSHA are as follows:
- OSHA should have primary authority for all occupational health and safety issues in the workplace.
- OSHA should set and enforce a set of generic performance standards.
- OSHA should have a mechanism to encourage employers to obtain third party assistance.
- OSHA should collect and disseminate health and safety data.
- OSHA should enhance technical support and research.
AIHA has also made recommendations to other countries so that workers can receive health and safety protections regardless of where they are employed.
AIHA believes that only with a cooperative effort can workers across the globe enjoy a healthful and safe workplace.
The associations'' guiding principles for occupational safety and health on a global scale are:
- A goal to assist.
- Avoid conflict with existing regulatory schemes.
- Incorporate incentives.
- Inspections/assessments and self-audits.
- Incorporate employee considerations.
For more information on AIHA''s suggestions for better health and safety across the country and around the world, visit www.aiha.org.
by Virginia Sutcliffe