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OSHA Wants Change to Walkaround Rule

Article-OSHA Wants Change to Walkaround Rule

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The proposal would allow union officials or employee advocates to join in jobsite safety inspections, but trade groups oppose the change.

A newly proposed rule from OSHA could mean more eyes on the jobsite during an inspection, and some contractor groups aren’t happy about it. The change proposed Wednesday to the “Representatives of Employers and Employees” regulation would allow an authorized representative to accompany an OSHA compliance officer “when they are reasonably necessary to aid in the inspection” of a worksite, even if they have no involvement with the project.

That representative would be authorized by employees or a third party such as an employee or union representative, even on non-union jobs. OSHA said the rule change will improve inspections by enabling workers to have representation during safety inspections and making it easier for compliance officers to obtain necessary information about workplace safety.

Associated Builders and Contractors, which has opposed similar rulings, released a statement against the rule change. “By allowing outside union representatives access to nonunion employers’ private property, OSHA is injecting itself into labor-management disputes and casting doubt on its status as a neutral enforcer of the law,” said Ben Brubeck, vice president of regulatory, labor and state affairs.

For more about the proposal rule, click here to visit out sister publication Construction Dive.

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