March 21, 2017
Workplace Safety Rule in Jeopardy; Public Health Groups Seek to Intervene
Industry Attempts to Scrap Workplace Injury and Illness Tracking Rule
WASHINGTON, D.C. – Public health groups are entitled to intervene in an Oklahoma lawsuit in which industry groups are suing the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) over a workplace injury and illness electronic reporting and public disclosure rule, Public Citizen, American Public Health Association, Council of State and Territorial Epidemiologists and Center for Media and Democracy, said in a motion filed today.
The case was brought by various employers in the construction and agriculture industries. The employers claim that OSHA’s Improve Tracking of Workplace Injuries and Illnesses rule is unlawful because they do not want to submit workplace injury and illness reports electronically and have those reports made public. The groups filing the motion to intervene maintain that the rule is lawful and an important source of data for researchers who want to improve workplace safety.
“Under the new administration, which has vowed to repeal and weaken key safeguards that protect workers’ health and safety, this rule is needed more than ever,” said Dr. Sammy Almashat, researcher with Public Citizen’s Health Research Group. “These data are critical to our mission as researchers seeking to reduce hazards that workers face on the job.”
The motion to intervene was filed in the U.S. District Court Western District of Oklahoma. Read the motion. On Friday, the public health groups filed a similar motion in the U.S. District Court Northern District of Texas. View more details.