Workplace safety advocates, families: We need better laws
Los Angeles – Better laws and more resources are needed to protect workers throughout the country, several safety advocates said in an April 23 teleconference sponsored by the National Council for Occupational Safety and Health.
The teleconference accompanied a report (.pdf file) from the council – an umbrella organization of state and local workplace advocacy groups – that includes data on worker fatalities and recommendations to keep workers safe.
The report offers several suggestions for state and government agencies, including:
- Minimum penalties to employers for workplace fatalities
- Promulgation of an Injury and Illness Prevention Program Standard
- Passage of the Protecting America’s Workers Act and Robert C. Byrd Mine Safety Protection Act
- State legislation to protect temporary workers
“Workplaces are still dangerous in the United States,” Tom O’Conner, executive director of National COSH, said during the teleconference. “We’re trying to remind people that the vast majority of [workplace injuries] are preventable.”
The teleconference also featured family members of workers who died on the job. The families called for better laws to prevent organizations from cutting corners on occupational safety and health. The event took place in conjunction with the upcoming Workers Memorial Day (April 28).