Not a Member? Get access to HR news and resources that you can trust.
Change can be scary, but deploying new HR software doesn't have to be.
Is your employee handbook ready for the New Year? With SHRM’s Employee Handbook Builder get peace of mind that your handbook is up-to-date.
Get the HR education you need without travel expenses or time out of the office.
Register by March 3 and save $425! Join us in Chicago, IL – April 24-26, 2017.
A cooperative voluntary safety program run by the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) would be made permanent under bipartisan legislation introduced May 21, 2015, in the U.S. House of Representatives.
The Voluntary Protection Program Act would codify OSHA’s Voluntary Protection Programs (VPP), intended to incentivize employers to implement a comprehensive safety and health management system. VPP was created in 1982 and has 2,200 participating worksites covering nearly 1 million workers, but was never authorized in law.
The program recognizes employers that have implemented effective safety and health management systems, and maintain injury and illness rates below national averages for their respective industries. To participate, employers must submit an application to OSHA and undergo a rigorous onsite evaluation by a team of safety and health professionals. Program participants are exempt from OSHA programmed inspections while they maintain their VPP status.
“It is one federal program that works well, fostering cooperation between private businesses and a government regulator,” said Rep. Todd Rokita, R-Ind., and a sponsor of the bill. “Instead of heavy-handed government regulation, this program engages the private sector to create safe work environments,” he said in a press release.
Longtime VPP supporter Rep. Gene Green, D-Texas, and a co-sponsor of the legislation, called the program one of the few “that has achieved unified support from both union and nonunionized labor, small and large businesses, and government.”
Secretary of Labor Thomas Perez recently testified before a congressional committee on the merits of the program and the effort to get more companies involved in it.
“VPP sites are innovators and industry leaders in workplace safety. They create safer, more productive working environments that give American companies a competitive edge in the global marketplace,” said Mike Maddox, chairman of the VPP Participants’ Association representing worksites that are participating in the program or pursuing VPP status. “It is fantastic to have bipartisan recognition of VPP’s success as the Department of Labor’s premier cooperative program. This legislation will ensure that OSHA can continue to support VPP, matching the commitment of VPP companies, workers and unions who already volunteer time, expertise and resources toward making workplaces safer across the country.”
Roy Maurer is an online editor/manager for SHRM.
Follow him @SHRMRoy
You have successfully saved this page as a bookmark.
Please confirm that you want to proceed with deleting bookmark.
You have successfully removed bookmark.
Please log in as a SHRM member before saving bookmarks.
Your session has expired. Please log in again before saving bookmarks.
Please purchase a SHRM membership before saving bookmarks.
An error has occurred
Recommended for you
SHRM Talent Management Conference & Expo
SHRM’s HR Vendor Directory contains over 3,200 companies