10 tips for starting a workplace safety and health program
Does your workplace lack a safety and health program? If you’re looking to create one, OSHA offers 10 tips to get you going.
- Make safety and health a core value. Ensure workers know that having them go home safely each night is the way you do business. Let them know their health is a top concern, and make it clear that any hazards will be taken seriously and addressed.
- Show workers your organization cares about their safety by making safety part of daily interactions with employees.
- Create a well-communicated, simple reporting system workers can use to report injuries, illnesses or incidents, such as near misses. Workers need to know that they won’t be retaliated against, so include an option to make the process anonymous.
- Educate workers on identifying and controlling potential hazards.
- Regularly conduct inspections with workers, and ask them to help identify issues that concern them regarding safety.
- Make workers part of the safety process by asking them for hazard control ideas. “Provide them time during work hours, if necessary, to research solutions,” OSHA advises.
- Have workers choose, implement and evaluate hazard control solutions.
- Determine foreseeable emergency situations that may arise, and have a plan in place on how to handle them. Display procedure signs in visible areas of the workplace.
- Before making significant changes, consult with employees about potential safety and health issues.
- Always aim for improvement. “Set aside a regular time to discuss safety and health issues, with the goal of identifying ways to improve the program,” OSHA recommends.