By: Selena Belisle, Owner/Instructor CE Institute LLC, Miami FL
OSHA stands for: Occupational Safety and Health Administration.[i] OSHA provides information about workplace health and safety hazards. OSHA was created by congress to assure safe and healthful working conditions for working men and women by setting and enforcing standards and by providing training, outreach, education and assistance.
OSHA is part of the United States Department of Labor. The administrator for OSHA is the Assistant Secretary of Labor for Occupational Safety and Health. OSHA's administrator answers to the Secretary of Labor, who is a member of the cabinet of the President of the United States. OSHA covers most private sector employers and their workers, in addition to some public-sector employers and workers in the 50 states and certain territories and jurisdictions under federal authority.
Under federal law, you are entitled to a safe workplace[ii]. Your employer must provide a workplace free of known health and safety hazards. If you have concerns, you have the right to speak up about them without fear of retaliation. You also have the right to:
- Be trained in a language you understand
- Work on machines that are safe
- Be provided required safety gear, such as gloves or a harness and lifeline for falls
- Be protected from toxic chemicals
- Request an OSHA inspection, and speak to the inspector
- Report an injury or illness, and get copies of your medical records
- See copies of the workplace injury and illness log
- Review records of work-related injuries and illnesses
- Get copies of test results done to find hazards in the workplace
If you believe working conditions are unsafe or unhealthful, you may file a confidential complaint with OSHA and ask for an inspection. If possible, bring the conditions to your employer's attention. It is illegal for an employer to fire, demote, transfer or otherwise retaliate against a worker for using their rights under the law. If you believe you have been retaliated against in any way, file a whistleblower complaint within 30 days of the alleged retaliation.x
You can file a workplace complaint with OSHA by[iii]:
- Phone #: 1-800-321-OSHA. OSHA reps can discuss your complaint and respond to any questions you have about filing a complaint
- Address: OSHA, 200 Constitution Ave., NW, Washington, DC 20210
- Website (more details are available on this page to file a complaint): https://www.osha.gov/workers/file_complaint.html
This BLOG was written by Selena Belisle, the Founder of CE Institute LLC in Miami FL. She is a retired professional athlete and has been practicing massage therapy for over 30 years. Selena is an approved CE Provider with NCBTMB & the Florida Board of Massage. She now teaches full time for the Complementary and Alternative Health Care Industries. You can learn more about Selena’s training and CE classes at www.CeInstitute.com
[i] “UNITED STATES DEPARTMENT OF LABOR.” Occupational Safety and Health Administration, Retrieved online: 19 May 2018, www.osha.gov/about.html.
[ii] “UNITED STATES DEPARTMENT OF LABOR.” Occupational Safety and Health Administration, Retrieved online: 19 May 2018, www.osha.gov/workers/index.html.
[iii] “UNITED STATES DEPARTMENT OF LABOR.” Occupational Safety and Health Administration, Retrieved online: 19 May 2018, www.osha.gov/workers/file_complaint.html.