Federal agencies Recordkeeping

OSHA asks: Should employers be cited for discouraging injury reporting?

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Photo: Marjan_Apostolovic/iStock/Thinkstock

Washington – In light of stakeholder concerns that a proposed rule on injury reporting could lead to employer tactics that result in inaccurate data, OSHA is asking for feedback on possible amendments to the proposal.

Under the proposed rule, many employers would be required to electronically submit, on a regular basis, worker injury and illness records. The rule would affect only employers currently required to keep such records.

The submitted data would be made available to the public. The agency claims the move would encourage employers to maintain safe workplaces and would lead to improved occupational safety and health research.

During a January public meeting on the rule, several stakeholders voiced concerns that the proposed rule would harm the reputation of employers, who then might intentionally undercount recordables or adopt practices that discourage employee injury reporting.

To address these concerns, OSHA is seeking comment until Oct. 14 on whether the rule should have provisions making it a violation for employers to discourage employee reporting, either through retaliation or through “unreasonable” injury and illness reporting requirements.