More than 4 million workers a year sustain severe occupational injuries or illnesses. While such incidents negatively impact employees and their families, companies also suffer losses in expenses and productivity. Every week, companies spend a billion dollars on workers’ compensation, which is money that could be better spent growing small businesses and creating jobs.
To help make workplaces safer, OSHA has introduced a Safe and Sound Campaign and is encouraging employers to evaluate their health and safety programs. A representative from OSHA stated that when employers identify and control injury-causing hazards in their workplaces, they can focus on creating better health and safety programs while improving competitiveness and saving money.
Effective occupational health and safety programs consist of three basic factors. One is a systematic find-and-solve approach. By thoroughly and routinely examining their workplaces, employers and their employees may be able to discover and deal with dangers before someone is injured. Worker participation is another core component of a good safety plan. Employers should invite employees to help identify solutions since workers that are involved in the process tend to stay longer with companies and are more productive. Once a program is established, it must be maintained and continually improved through management leadership.
Companies that need help complying with OSHA’s safety regulations can contact their local OSHA offices. Establishing an effective health and safety program is not complicated and does not require employing a third-party consultant. OHSA offers plenty of free resources to help employers come up with strong health and safety programs, some of which include educational materials, tips and training regarding common occupational safety dangers and how workplace injuries and illnesses can be prevented.
Employers are required to follow OSHA’s safety and health guides, or they can be fined. They must also carry workers’ compensation benefits in case any of their employees is injured on the job or develops an occupational illness.