Safety organization makes pitch to Congress

The American Society of Safety Engineers (ASSE) recently sent federal lawmakers draft legislation that details needed reforms in the occupational safety and health law.

The organization's bill, called Enhancing Occupational Safety and Health Protections in the 100th Year Act of 2011, is designed to help the U.S. Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) and the National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH) improve their capabilities.

ASSE President Darryl Hill said the draft builds on previous policies while addressing what is being neglected by existing laws. The legislation was sent on June 10 to the chairman and ranking members of the Senate Committee on Health, Education, Labor and Pensions as well as the House Committee on Education and the Workforce.

Some of the proposed changes are updating permissible exposure limits, increasing penalties for those responsible for an unsafe work culture and encouraging collaborative rulemaking within a company.

"Efforts of employers and our members, OSHA’s regulatory oversight, and the research and support for education that NIOSH directs have been highly successful," Hill said. "But no one believes workers are safe enough. No one believes that we cannot do better. Let’s do better."

One of the most important ways to improve workplace safety is through the use of quality safety supplies.

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