Former OSHA Head Advocates Better Safety and Health System to Protect Workers and the Public

Dr. David Michaels, who ran the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) for eight years, recently discussed his vision for overhauling the agency to increase worker safety and the opportunity to do so under the Biden administration’s worker-friendly climate.

In an interview with Chemical and Engineering News, Michaels cited the extended lead time required to create a final standard that he and—even the agency—admit is oftentimes too weak.

Michaels also said that inadequate penalties for violating these standards, a low number of workplace safety inspectors for a growing workforce, opportunities for opponents to delay or block stronger regulations, and a lack of protection for contract, temporary or gig workers mandate a new approach to workplace safety.

President Biden has already indicated support for increasing worker safety, including issuing an executive order on inauguration day that calls for modernizing federal regulations. Michaels would like to see Biden keep up this momentum with an overhaul of the current workplace safety regulatory system.

To read more about OSHA and Michaels’ thoughts about U.S. workplace safety, go HERE.

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