Magazine article Occupational Hazards

Scannell Calls for OSHA Reform

Magazine article Occupational Hazards

Scannell Calls for OSHA Reform

Article excerpt

"OSHA reform is a good idea," former OSHA-Chief Gerard F. Scannell said at a blockbuster session during the recent National Safety Congress (NSC) held in Orlando.

Scannell, who left OSHA at the beginning of this year to return to the private sector as vice president of corporate safety affairs for Johnson & Johnson, urged safety professionals to become involved in the OSHA reform debate and push for needed improvements. He said he opposed OSHA reform while serving as OSHA-chief because the official Bush Administration position was in opposition to the bill. He said that he's personally convinced that reform of the 21-year-old OSH Act is necessary. He said the proposed Comprehensive Occupational Safety and Health Reform Act, supported by organized labor, is a useful starting point for considering reform.

Closely mirroring the National Safety Council's position on OSHA reform, Scannell, a member of the NSC board of directors, offered several suggestions for improving the law. Among them, he said Congress should order OSHA to write a regulation requiring employee involvement, although the provision should not go so far as to mandate labor-management safety committees. …

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