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OSHA Issues Best Practices for Safety of Temporary Workers

OSHA Issues Best Practices for Safety of Temporary WorkersBased on its view that temporary workers are more vulnerable to workplace safety hazards and retaliation than workers in traditional employment relationships, OSHA recently issued new guidance on protecting temporary workers from safety and health hazards on the job.

As the new guidance illustrates, staffing agencies and host employers share control over temporary workers and are therefore jointly responsible for maintaining a safe work environment for temporary workers - including ensuring that OSHA's training, hazard communication, and recordkeeping requirements are fulfilled. As such, OSHA can hold both staffing agencies and host employers responsible for violations.

To ensure there is a clear understanding of each employer's role in protecting temporary employees, OSHA recommends temporary staffing agencies and host employers set out their respective responsibilities for compliance with applicable OSHA standards in their staffing contracts. Including such terms in the staffing contract ensures each employer complies with all relevant regulatory requirements and avoids any confusion as to their respective obligations.

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