OSHA Increasing Fines Through Major Changes in Enforcement Policies

In light of the decision by the previous, marginally Democratic Congress not to increase OSHA fines beyond inflation adjustments and the shift to a Republican House, it appears the Biden Administration has decided it will increase deterrence against OSHA violations by implementing penalty increases through two changes in its enforcement policies. One January 26, 2023…

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OSHA Continues to Address Staffing Shortage

In 2022, the Occupational, Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) added 142 inspectors to its ranks, as part of an effort to reverse a downtrend in agency manpower brought on principally by retirements. The Biden administration’s announced goal is to nearly double the number of inspectors by 2024. According to a November 2022 Department of Labor…

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Should Your Workplace Require Flu Shots?

The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) recently reported the start of the most severe flu season in over a decade, leading employers of all types to decide whether they should mandate flu shots for their workforce. The flu season typically runs between October and May with a peak in January and February,…

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Another Year In The Books – OSHA’s Top Ten Safety Violations for Fiscal Year 2022

The National Safety Council (NSC) released an update to its annual list of OSHA’s top-ten cited standards. The list provides a starting point for employers to review their own safety programs on an annual basis. Patrick Kapust, deputy director of OSHA’s Directorate of Enforcement Programs, presented OSHA’s preliminary Top 10 most frequently cited workplace safety…

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New Frontier in COVID-19 Vaccine Litigation

Despite President Biden’s recent declaration that the COVID-19 pandemic is over, litigation concerning employer vaccine mandates continues as employers face hurdles to ensure workplace safety and compliance with government mandates. Here we take a closer look at issues companies are facing more than two years into the pandemic, and how you may help your business…

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OSHA Proposes Expanding Electronic Recordkeeping Rule to Add Smaller Employers

The Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) has published a proposed rule to restore and expand Obama-era requirements for high-hazard employers with at least 100 employees to submit their injury and illness forms electronically to the agency. In 2016, OSHA promulgated an electronic recordkeeping rule, Improve Tracking of Workplace Injuries and Illnesses Rule, which required…

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Intersection of ADA, COVID-19 Requires Creative Reopening Policies, EEOC Official Says

The EEOC has received hundreds of charges involving both COVID-19 vaccination and the ADA, according to Evangeline Hawthorne, the agency’s Tampa field office director. The U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission has received thousands of charges related to COVID-19 since the pandemic began. As of December 2021, more than 2,700 charges were related to COVID-19 vaccines,…

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Workforce Drug Test Positivity Climbs to Highest Level in Two Decades

The rate of positive drug test results among America’s workforce reached its highest rate in 2021 since 2001, and was up more than 30% in the combined U.S. workforce from an all-time low in 2010-2012, according to a new analysis released by Quest Diagnostics, the world’s leading provider of diagnostic information services. Employers face mounting…

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