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OSHA's comprehensive approach to workplace safety and health includes enforcement, standard setting, and compliance assistance and cooperative programs. OSHA's compliance assistance and cooperative program activities help support the Agency's enforcement, standard setting, and other priorities.
OSHA is the primary federal agency responsible for ensuring the safety and health of America's working men and women. The workplaces we oversee are diverse - more than 7 million offices, factories, shipyards, hotels, hospitals, concert halls, and construction sites.
Employers who comply with OSHA standards will experience a much safer and healthful workplace. OSHA vigorously enforces these standards - OSHA inspectors (called Compliance Safety and Health Officers) inspect workplaces and issue citations and penalties. In the most serious cases of workplace fatalities, the federal Department of Justice may criminally prosecute businesses that violate the law. Enforcement plays an important part in OSHA's efforts to reduce workplace injuries, illnesses, and fatalities. Through our Severe Violator Enforcement Program, Site-Specific Targeting, and other enforcement emphasis programs, we send a clear message that OSHA takes its mission seriously. When we find employers who fail to uphold their employee safety and health responsibilities, we deal with them strongly.
OSHA is authorized by the Occupational Safety and Health Act to issue new standards and revise its existing standards. Standard setting is an important part of OSHA's mission to protect the safety and health of America's workforce.
Supporting Agency Priorities
OSHA's compliance assistance and cooperative program activities support other agency priorities, such as outreach to Hispanic and other diverse workforces. In addition, OSHA's compliance assistance and cooperative program activities will support the Department of Labor's and OSHA's goals to promote good, safe jobs for everyone and to give workers an expanded voice in the workplace. For example, OSHA will strive to inform workers of their rights under the Occupational Safety and Health Act, including the right to file complaints with OSHA about unsafe workplaces.
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