Today's News

OSHA chief Michaels goes public with top priorities (12/18)

December 18, 2009
/ Print / Reprints /
/ Text Size+

Kathy Seabrook, owner of the consultancy Global Solutions, Inc. and Global Solutions International Ltd. ( tells ISHNshe represented the American Society of Safety Engineers, as Sustainability & Safety Professional Chair, at the NIOSH Green Jobs: Making Green Jobs Safe Workshop held this week. Assistant Secretary of Labor for Occupational Safety and Health (aka the OSHA boss) Dr. David Michaels, all of five days into his new job replacing acting OSHA chief Jordan Barab, provided the closing presentation for the workshop.

According to Kathy Seabrook, Michaels for the first time publically outlined his areas for OSHA emphasis and reform:
  • aggressively pursuing a plan (similar to plans to reform EPA’s Toxic Substances Control Act) to update hundreds of chemical exposure limits set in the 1950s and 1960s and figure out a way to set chemical exposure standards at pace greater than two in the past 12 years, which is OSHA’s current track record;
  • aggressive rulemaking for essential standards, such as a national workplace injury and illness prevention program;
  • emphasis on prevention through design rather than retrofitting hazardous operations to make them safer;
  • giving workers a greater voice in workplace safety than they now have;
  • take a hard look at incentive and disciplinary programs to ensure they do not discourage worker reporting of injuries and illnesses.
In response to a question from ISHN, Kathy described Dr. Michaels as “comfortable in his own suit, well-spoken, not an academician; not a bureaucrat or politician per se. He was on point, knowledgeable, professional and spoke with conviction on his priorities. He is not a Barab in personality so there is a difference in delivery. Michaels was deliberate and disarming at once.”

Did you enjoy this article? Click here to subscribe to ISHN.

You must login or register in order to post a comment.


Facebook logo Twitter YouTubeLinkedIn



Image Galleries

ASSE's Safety 2013 Review

A photo gallery from the Las Vegas Convention Center, where ASSE’s annual professional development conference was held June 24 to 27. All photos courtesy of the American Society of Safety Engineers.


ISHN Magazine

ishn april 2014 issue cover

2014 April

In this month's issue of ISHN, check out features about safety in the oil and gas industry.

Table Of Contents Subscribe


M:\General Shared\__AEC Store Katie Z\AEC Store\Images\ISHN\safetyfourth.jpg
Safety Engineering, 4th Edition

A practical, solutions-driven reference, Safety Engineering, 4th edition, has been completely revised and updated to reflect many of today’s issues in safety.

More Products

For Distributors Only - January 2014

ISHN0114_FDO_cov.jpgFor Distributors Only is ISHN's niche brand standard-sized magazine supplement aimed at an audience of 2,000 U.S. distributors that sell safety products. Circulation only goes to distributors. CHECK OUT THEJANUAYR 2014 ISSUE OF FDO HERE

ishn infographics

2012 US workplace deathsCheck out ISHN's new Infographic page! Learn more about worker safety through these interactive images. CLICK HERE to view the page.