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Injury and illness prevention programs stir stakeholder debates (8/30)

August 30, 2010
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We’re just getting heated up on the huge debate that will hound development of OSHA chief Dr. David Michaels’ number one standard priority, the so-called I2P2 injury and illness prevention program standard, aka the “find and fix” rule.

Here are comments from “stakeholders” at the I2P2 town hall meeting in East Brunswick, held June 3:

Many stakeholders were concerned that current safety and health programs do not put enough responsibility or accountability on employees themselves.

Another stakeholder felt that personal accountability for safety and health cannot be emphasized enough and that it should be made clear to workers that they share responsibility for their safety and health.

Representatives from various industries emphasized that management cannot be present at all worksites to ensure that workers are following safe practices so to some extent, businesses must rely on workers to comply.

One stakeholder expressed concern that workers will continue to take risks regardless of the type of management system or safety and health program that is put in place.

Another participant argued the processes that workers engage in are management's responsibility and making workers accountable for safety and health could have unintended negative impacts, such as workers getting fired for flunking safety tests, which is not the goal of an Injury and Illness Prevention Program rule.

Another stakeholder noted that, by nature, workers want to go home healthy and it is the responsibility of management to provide workers with training on how t understand and avoid risks so that they can be safe on the frontlines.

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