Biden Administration pushes for climate-related worker protections
The Biden administration is promoting protections for new workers this summer after many workers died or were sent to hospitals in record temperatures.
The Department of Labor’s Occupational Safety and Health Administration recently announced that it will focus on prioritizing hot-day inspections as it targets high-risk industries across the country, such as roofing and landscaping.
“When I first entered the industry years ago, safety was a bad word,” said Susie Boyd, vice president of a Colorado roofing company. “In our industry, there is a lot of friction with OSHA and there can be a lot of friction about limits because it slows down the work and may not be profitable for me. What I’ve seen over the years and what I’ve experienced around the house is that I’ve significantly reduced the number of really horrendous accidents. Which is good. “
A recent survey by NPR and Columbia Journalism Investigations found that extreme heat has killed 384 workers in the past decade, doubling the number of worker deaths since 1990 on average over three years. It became.
In addition, the data shows that their deaths disproportionately affect the color community. Hispanics make up just 17% of the U.S. workforce but are responsible for a third of all heat deaths since 2011, according to figures from the Labor Statistics Bureau.
New government initiatives to protect workers include the development of federal regulations to protect workers. This is what its proponents have long sought.
John McMahon, CEO of Colorado’s relevant landscape contractor, said, “As you know, the fact that OSHA is doing this is welcome as long as it’s practical.”
According to OSHA, the number of serious injuries in landscaping is the third highest since 2015.
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