Workplace injuries are inevitable; however, the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) has developed the Injury and Illness Prevention Program (IIPP) to assist employers in identifying, correcting, and improving workplace safety.
Evaluate the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) and the Occupational Safety and Health Act of 1970 (OSH Act) and provide a brief synopsis of your findings.
Explain whether or not your state is mandated to have an Injury and Illness Prevention Program (IIPP).
Analyze the IIPP model for California (pros and cons).
Justify your view on whether or not the IIPP program is simple to implement and manage based on the California Model, will benefit your organization, and will reduce injuries in the workplace.
Injury and Illness Prevention Program
Overview of the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) and the Occupational Safety and Health Act of 1970 (OSH Act).
The work environment can be very hazardous and subject the life of workers to severe danger. However, every employee should have the right to a safe workplace that does not pose any threats to them and co-workers (Howard, 2017). This explains the reason for the formation of the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA), which is a government agency responsible for setting standards and ensuring the American workforce stays safe and healthy by training the employers and employees on the necessary safety measures. The agency finds its strength under the primary law that ensures workers’ safety, the Occupational Safety and Health (OSH) Act of 1970, which became effective in 1971. Through this law, the main objective is to realize a reduction of workplace hazards and implement sustainable health and safety programs for both employees and their employers (Tustin et al., 2018). It then provides several rights to employees including the right for precise training and information concerning the hazards of the workplace, how to avoid them, and the applicable OSHA standards and laws.
In addition to the employees’ rights offered within the structure, the OSH Act outlines employers’ obligations to ensure they cooperate in the quest to reduce workplace injuries. Among the requirements include providing a safe workplace free from serious hazards, minimization or elimination of hazards if any, notification and training of employees on their safety, and how to stay safe and healthy (Crane, 2018). The agency makes frequent inspections and, in most cases, receives help from safety whistleblowers, who report any workplace dangers and failures by the employers to implement the required safety measures. Since the agency operates within the United States Department of Labor, nearly all employees fall under its jurisdiction even though individual states can also pass their worker health and safety laws.
Injury and Illness Prevention Program (IIPP) in California
The state of California has taken the workplace safety quest more seriously with the provision of the Injury and Illness Prevention Program (IIPP), which aims at enhancing the safety of workers and employers within the workplace. IIPP is a fundamental written workplace safety program that outlines significant practical measures geared toward the realization of the ultimate objective of OSHA. For efficiency, the program must contain concepts such as the introduction and scope, responsibilities, danger valuation and correction, communication mechanisms, incident reporting, training, and compliance with the standards. Therefore, my state is mandated to have the IIPP (Manrique et al., 2019).
Pros and Cons for the IIPP Model
The California model requires that every employer must develop and implement an effective IIPP through Title 8 of the California Code of Regulations (T8CCR) section 3203. Such requirements have their advantages and disadvantages both to the employee and to the employer. Every employer is in business to stay and attain the goals and objectives, which makes it prudent for them to utilize cost-effective approaches within the environment. On this note, IIPP, when embraced and implemented effectively, helps in reducing costs by management and employee involvement. Through cost reduction, the organization can realize higher proceeds from the business and maximize the profits for growth and overall development of the organization (Klyve et al., 2017). Apart from cost reduction, IIPP also improves safety and health within the workplace, which then enhances workers’ productivity.
Moreover, this program also makes it mandatory for workers to receive adequate training and have the right to information access. This helps in building a workforce that is equipped for service and can take the initiative toward ensuring his or her own safety. Employees learn to be vigilant and focused within the workplace as well as keep the employers on toes by constant checks on their compliance with the regulations (Bosson-Rieutort et al., 2020). It also keeps the workplace morale at an exciting level that can propel the team to the expected standards.
Nevertheless, there are also challenges experienced with the program, which makes it difficult for employers to run their affairs seamlessly. The program does not have a proper engagement scheme for the employers and the agency. In most cases, the relationship between the employers and the agency is never smooth because they do not engage at a comprehensive level. Top management commitment toward ensuring workplace safety is a strong point to begin from, which should then involve them alongside supervisors and other employees for holistic safety improvement (Bohórquez et al., 2019). Therefore, the program lacks rigorous evaluation of the efficiency of the existing approaches in the maintenance of workplace safety.
Implementation and Management based on the California Model
The effectiveness of this program depends on how organizations and individuals embrace their objectives and guidelines towards achieving such. That is, the program has simple requirements, which, through cooperation, is attainable by all. Although the California model requires that every California employee should have an Injury and Illness Prevention Program, the failure by OSHA to monitor the quality and effectiveness of IIPPs opens room for some gaps (Loulakis & McLaughlin, 2019). Notwithstanding, the simplicity of the implementation revolves around the eight fundamental requirements found in the California Codes of Regulation. These include responsibility, compliance, communication, hazard assessment, accident investigation, hazard correction, training and investigation, and record keeping.
Furthermore, the organization needs to have chemistry between the employees and the employer, which is one of the basic requirements for efficiency in IIPPs. It has to involve the supervisors, the employees, and the management fully. Although this can be challenging, it is inevitable. Interestingly, through identifying and correcting the hazards at an appropriate time, the organization obtains some sense of security for its precious assets, the workers. Although the program cannot eliminate injuries, it reduces them to some manageable level (Gooch, 2018). These reductions enhance productivity for every organization, which makes the struggle for its implementation worth. This means that my organization will benefit from the efforts to utilize the California model.
The productivity of workers depends on several factors, including their health and the level of training they have. In most cases, employers focus on the employees’ training and skill endowment without considering their safety and health as they come into the organization and even at the time of their departure. However, through the OSHA and OSH Act 1970, every employer must ensure safety measures are in place to reduce workplace injuries and damages to the health of the employees. Necessarily, these measures do benefit not only the employees but also the employer who, out of the improved productivity of the workers, experiences increased proceeds. The California IIPP model also makes provisions to ensure the reduction of injuries, which has proven to enhance the safety and workers’ welfare within the state. Through collaboration with the state agencies, employers can help in making the United States’ labor department one of its kind that appreciates and values the health of workers.
Bohórquez, S. J. C., Rojas, Y. L. R., Cruz, H. W. H., & Silva, M. V. M. (2019, October). Integration of health and safety at work in the management of public organizations in Bogotá DC. In 2019 Congreso Internacional de Innovación y Tendencias en Ingenieria (CONIITI) (pp. 1-5). IEEE.
Bosson-Rieutort, D., Sarazin, P., Bicout, D. J., Ho, V., & Lavoué, J. (2020). Occupational Co-exposures to Multiple Chemical Agents from Workplace Measurements by the US Occupational Safety and Health Administration. Annals of Work Exposures and Health.
Crane, D. T. (2018). OSHA and elongate mineral particles. Toxicology and applied pharmacology, 361, 165-167.
Gooch, P. (2018). Hospital workplace violence prevention in California: new regulations. Workplace health & safety, 66(3), 115-119.
Howard, J. (2017). Nonstandard work arrangements and worker health and safety. American journal of industrial medicine, 60(1), 1-10.