Magazine article HRMagazine

Employers Debate Publication of Injury and Illness Data

Magazine article HRMagazine

Employers Debate Publication of Injury and Illness Data

Article excerpt

The Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) proposal to require businesses to submit injury and illness records and have them published on the agency's website met criticism during a public hearing in January.

Safety advocates fear that the public disclosure of such information would chill reporting, while employer groups questioned the exposure of companies' proprietary information, the potential for mischaracterization of the data, OSHA's intentions for the data, and the agency's ability to keep it secure.

Although publicized data would identify businesses, it would be scrubbed of employees' personally identifiable information. Other federal agencies-including the Mine Safety and Health Administration and the Federal Railroad Administration-make similar data available online.

Employer representatives repeatedly voiced fears that public injury and illness records would be mischaracterized and safety records would be unjustly viewed out of context. …

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