What is the occupational health and safety act
The Occupational Health and Safety Act is the cornerstone of legislative and administrative measures adopted to improve occupational health and safety; it is also represented as “The OHS act”.
According to Wikipedia, “The Occupational Safety and Health Act is a US labor law governing the federal law of occupational health and safety in the private sector and federal government in the United States. It was enacted by Congress in 1970 and was signed by President Richard Nixon on December 29, 1970.”
At the end of this article, answers to pertinent questions about the OHS act will be addressed, also a platform where you can download a copy of the OHS act.
So let’s go!!!
First of all:
What is occupational health and safety (OHS)?
Before we go back to the OHS act; lets understand what OHS is about?
OHS (Occupational health and safety) is a discipline which aims at promoting and maintaining the highest degree of physical, mental and social well-being of workers in all occupations; prevention of adverse effects on health caused by working conditions among workers; protection of workers in their employment from risks resulting from factors adverse to health; placing and maintenance of workers in an occupational environment adapted to physical and mental needs; and the adaptation of work to humans.
What is the main purpose of the OHS act (Occupational safety and health act)
The act sets out the key principles, duties and rights in relation to occupational health and safety.
The primary goal of this act is to reduce workplace hazards and implement safety and health programs for both employers and their employees.
What do the OHS act cover
Under the Occupational Health and Safety Act is the Occupational Health and Safety Regulation. The Occupational Health and Safety Regulation specify the ways duties imposed by the Act to be performed, or prescribe procedural or administrative matters to support the Act, such as requiring licenses for specific activities, keeping records, or notifying certain matters.
The Act lead to the creation of “The Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA)” and “The National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH)”.
Who does the occupational health and safety act (OHS act) apply to
The Occupational Health and Safety Act which is administered by the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) covers most private sector employers and their employees.
Federal OSHA also covers certain workers specifically excluded from a state plan, such as those in some states who work in maritime industries or on military bases.
Generally, the act covers every worker, supervisor, employer and workplace in the US. Regulated parties also include owners, constructors, and suppliers of equipment or materials to workplaces.
Who is not covered by the OHS act?
Self-employed persons; Farms which employ only immediate members of the farmer’s family; Working conditions for which other Federal agencies, operating under the authority of other Federal laws, regulate worker safety. This category includes most working conditions in mining, nuclear energy and nuclear weapons manufacture, and many aspects of the transportation industries; and Employees of state and local governments, unless they are in one of the states operating an OSHA-approved state plan.
Download a copy of the Occupational Health and Safety Act here
Read Also: Material safety data sheet (MSDS)