It is easy to understand how employees may not be fully aware of what they should expect regarding worker safety. With job duties, continued training and other concerns, many employees may not even think about safety measures, or a lack thereof, until there is an injury or other tragic incident. Worker safety should always be a priority of employers, and employees have the right to expect a safe and productive work environment.
The Occupational Safety and Health Administration is a federal agency dedicated to protecting the safety of workers, including those in Alabama. OSHA has the authority to issue citations and levy fines against employers who violate safety standards, as illustrated in previous blog posts on our website. OSHA monitors areas such as chemical hazards, construction standards, emergency procedures and other potential health risks.
In addition to the safety standards set by OSHA, this organization also protects certain rights of the employee. For example, an employee has the right to refuse to complete a task if it places him or her at risk for bodily harm. Employees should be properly trained and prepared to fulfill their work duties, as well as be informed of all rights granted by OSHA. Employees also have the right to report any violation of rights or safety standards with the proper authorities.
Alabama employees can empower themselves by understanding all rights granted to them. Safety standards, worker safety and proper work environments are key for the health and safety of employees. When an employee is injured or killed at work, the victim (or the family of a deceased victim) would likely be eligible to receive workers' compensation benefits. After a work injury, it is beneficial to explore exactly which benefits apply to the injured employee or family members in order to cover medical expenses and lost wages.
Source: FindLaw, "Your Safety at Work -- OSHA and State Law," accessed Aug. 5, 2014