- Record Type:OSHA Instruction
- Current Directive Number:IRT 03-00-001
- Old Directive Number:ADM 1-0.20
- Title:Internet Policies and Procedures
- Information Date:
|DIRECTIVE NUMBER: ADM 1-0.20||EFFECTIVE DATE: December 15, 2000|
|SUBJECT: Internet Policies and Procedures|
|Purpose:||To implement current policies and procedures for use of OSHA's Internet, Intranet and Extranet services to disseminate information, applications or materials, both internally and externally.|
|References:||U.S. Department of Labor (DOL) Plan to Improve Accessibility to Electronic Information Technology (October 1999); Internet Clearance and Operating Procedures, Memorandum from Cynthia Metzler to Executive Staff, October 29, 1996; OSHA Instruction PUB 8.4A, July 8, 1985.|
|Cancellations:||See Paragraph IV.|
|State Impact:||This instruction describes a Federal Program Change, which does not require adoption by the States. States are, however, indirectly affected by procedures and polices involving use of the OSHANET.|
|Action Offices:||National, Regional and Area Offices.|
|Originating Office:||Directorate of Information Technology|
Director, Directorate of Information Technology
200 Constitution Avenue, N. W.
Room N-3661, FPB
Washington, D. C. 20210
Charles N. Jeffress
|This Instruction cancels previous guidance memoranda regarding Internet policies. It is a compendium of internet policies for the agency. It defines responsibilities related to internet usage and administration, prescribes clearance procedures for OSHA Website posting, defines acceptable formats for OSHA-related web pages, prescribes policies for inclusion of external links on OSHA web pages, and addresses other general requirements which have been set by OSHA, the Department of Labor and other Federal entities.|
- Director of Information Technology (DIT).
- Director, Office of Public Affairs (OPA).
- Director of Administrative Programs (DAP).
- Directorate Heads, Directors of Free-standing Offices, and Regional Administrators.
- Webmaster (Internet Coordinator).
- Web Officers.
- Information Technology Executive Steering Committee (ITESC).
- Internet Technical Advisory Group (ITAG).
- Clearing Materials To Be Posted on the OSHA Website.
- Clearance of Links to External Websites.
- Steps for Clearing New Materials for Internet Posting.
- Webmaster's Review.
- Steps for Clearing Changes to Existing Materials.
- Removal of Cleared Material on the OSHA Website.
- OSHA Website Pages.
- Pages and Responsibilities Defined.
- Page Technical Content.
- Page Content Maintenance.
- OSHA Intranet.
- Responsibilities/Clearance Approvals.
- Intranet Links to External Websites.
- Intranet Pages.
Clearance Criteria for Links to External Sites
Technical Specifications Check List for OSHA Website Pages
Government Mandates Affecting Internet Requirements
Purpose. This Instruction sets forth policies and procedures for use of OSHA's Website (including Internet, Intranet and Extranet services) by all offices to post information, applications, materials or other services. It also establishes and assigns responsibility for the OSHA Internet Technical Advisory Group; requires the assignment of Web Officers in affected offices and defines the role of the OSHA Webmaster with respect to the clearance and posting of materials on the Website. Except where noted, the instruction is applicable to all OSHA Internet, Intranet and Extranet activity.
Scope. This instruction applies to all offices of the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA).
OSHA Instruction PUB 8.4A, OSHA's Periodicals, Pamphlets and Audiovisual Control Plan, July 8, 1985.
OSHA Instruction ADM 8-0.2, OSHA Policy Issuances, December 11, 2000
OSHA Instruction ADM 8-0.3, OSHA Directives System, December 11, 2000
OSHA Instruction ADM 8-0.4, Non-Policy Issuances, December 11, 2000
OSHA Instruction ADM 12-0.4A, Revised OSHA Records Management Program, August 3, 1998.
DOL Internet Site: Rehabilitation Act, Section 508 Compliance and Redesign, Memorandum from Assistant Secretary for Public Affairs to Executive Staff, April 9, 1998.
U.S. Department of Labor (DOL) Plan to Improve Accessibility to Electronic Information Technology (October 1999)
Internet Clearance and Operating Procedures, Memorandum from Cynthia Metzler to Executive Staff, October 29, 1996.
Workforce Investment Act of 1998: Section 508-Electronic and Information Technology
Secretary of Labor's Order 2-2000, U.S. Department of Labor Internet Services, June 22, 2000.
Rehabilitation Act of 1998, Section 508, Electronic and Information Technology
Cancellations. Interim Internet Procedures, Memorandum to All OSHA Employees. Deputy Assistant Secretary Emily Sheketoff and Deputy Assistant Secretary Emzell Blanton, January 26, 1998; and Internet Procedures, Memorandum to National Office Directorates and Regional Administrators. Assistant Secretary Charles N. Jeffress, March 23 1999 are cancelled by this Instruction
Federal Program Change. This instruction describes a Federal Program Change, which does not require adoption by the States. States are, however, indirectly affected by procedures and polices involving use of the OSHANET.
- Responsible Office. Directorate of Information Technology
- Action Offices. National, Regional and Area Offices
- Information Offices. State Designees, Consultation Project Managers
Actions Required. All offices shall implement the policies and procedures contained in this Instruction.
Background. OSHA has had a presence on the Internet since 1995. OSHA's Web servers currently register monthly usage of more than 800,000 user sessions and 18 million 'hits' (March 2000). While usage of the Internet as an information dissemination tool is still evolving, it already serves a multiplicity of purposes, including:
The OSHA Internet makes possible 'one stop shopping' for all publicly available OSHA electronic resources, including data bases, publications and documents.
The Internet also allows OSHA to make available interactive and dynamic applications, including interactive expert advisor software, cyber-conferences, interactive slide presentations, collaborative chat forums and Web boards. In addition, it supports links to useful safety and health information.
The OSHA Intranet provides a vehicle to disseminate, within the "OSHA family", program-related information, drafts of work-in-progress, data sets and applications-under-development for comment or collaboration. It also includes compliance assistance materials and training products, among others. The Intranet also allows OSHA to make licensed databases from other agencies or commercial sources available to staff on a restricted-access basis.
The OSHA Extranet (or, Limited Access Page [LAP]) provides access to an OSHA server outside of the firewalls that is only accessible with a username and password. The Extranet provides access to draft information on the OSHA Intranet, for State Programs and Consultation Offices that are not connected to the OSHANET.
ADA-Compliant. Complies with the Americans with Disabilities Act and the Rehabilitation Act of 1998, Section 508, Electronic and Information Technology which requires that government Websites be designed to allow full access to anyone with disabilities, such as blindness, deafness, or impaired mobility or dexterity. For example, page readers can be provided for those visually impaired persons who cannot interpret text displayed in certain formats, such as side-by-side tables.
Director. As used in this directive, Director refers to OSHA's Directors of Directorates, Directors of Free-standing Offices, and Regional Administrators.
Extranet. Refers to an Intranet that is accessible to authorized outsiders. While an Intranet resides behind a firewall and is accessible only to people who are members of the same organization, an Extranet provides defined, restricted access for others who have a legitimate need to share some kinds of restricted access information. The OSHA Extranet is accessible only if the user has a valid username and password. The user's identity and need-to-know determine which parts of the Extranet can be viewed.
Gatekeeper. A designated function within an office or organization the purpose of which is to ensure that material submitted for posting on the Website meets current policies and procedures for clearance and posting. In OSHA, this function is assigned to Directors of Directorates and Free-standing Offices and to Regional Administrators, who may assign Web Officers to perform this duty.
Internet or World Wide Web (WWW). "The Internet, "WWW" and "the Web" refer to publicly accessible or public domain resources. These resources are usually not restricted and anyone with a connection to the Internet may access them using any Web browser software.
Intranet. The Intranet is a closed (private network) system that uses the same types of hardware and software technology as the Internet, but which has restricted access. While the Intranet Web servers can link to or serve public domain information, their primary content consists of information that is not in the public domain. Information on the Intranet is restricted to use by the OSHA family and it may not be disseminated outside of the agency without authorization.
OSHA Extranet (Limited Access Page [LAP]). For State Plan State offices and Consultation Project offices which do not have direct access to the OSHA Intranet through OSHANET, a limited access page (Extranet) outside of the agency firewall, provides access to draft documents and other non-secure agency resources which are available on the OSHA Intranet. This page is not linked or indexed from the OSHA Website, and can be accessed only with a user ID and password. Advisory committee members and consultants employed by OSHA may also be provided access to specific information for review purposes.
OSHA Family. Employees of the Occupational Safety and Health Administration, State Occupational Safety and Health Programs, OSHA-sponsored Consultation Projects and OSHA-sponsored Education Centers.
OSHA Intranet. The OSHA Intranet resides on servers located in the National Office and at the Salt Lake Technical Center. Draft documents, restricted databases, and applications under development are included on the OSHA Intranet. Firewalls protect these servers from public access. The OSHA Intranet also includes links to useful resources on the Internet and may include secure draft information for agency committees, contractors or task forces.
OSHANET. This is OSHA's wide-area network (WAN), which supports agency-wide e-mail applications, and provides access to the OSHA Intranet servers. OSHANET can be accessed only by those offices (federal and State) which are physically connected or by staff who have been provided remote dial-up access.
OSHA Website. (OSHA Public Website; OSHA Internet Site; OSHA Home Page). OSHA has only one public Website, http://www.osha.gov. In this directive, however, except where noted, the term "OSHA Website" includes Internet, Intranet and Extranet components.
URL. A URL (Universal Resource Locator) is an address that points to a particular Website, document, image or other resource on an Internet or Intranet server. The URL for the OSHA Home Page, for example, is http://www.osha.gov. (URLs for pages which reside on servers at the Salt Lake Technical Center contain the letters "-slc"; for example, http://www.osha-slc.gov/....).
Web Browser. A browser is software that is specifically designed to download, display and print "web pages" stored in HTML (Hypertext Markup Language) format. Browser software may also support additional capabilities, such as file downloading, application engines, and e-mail.
Webmaster. General designation used by most organizations to identify the person assigned to ensure that the organization's Website is properly managed and to ensure that all policies and procedures for posting material on the Website have been followed before material is posted.
Web Officer. The person in each Directorate, Regional Office or Free-Standing Office, Designated by its Director, who is responsible for such duties as: coordinating clearance within the organizational unit for material to be posted on the Web; ensuring that the material to be submitted for posting is in the proper format; and for coordinating with the OSHA Webmaster.
Website. A site (location) on the World Wide Web. Each Website contains a home page which is the first document users see when they enter the site. The expression " Website" is used to represent the entire collection of all material maintained on the Web under the same domain name (URL) by an organization or business entity.
Objectives. This directive delegates authority and assigns responsibility for managing OSHA's Website, including Internet, Intranet and Extranet services. It defines processes for adding and maintaining resources on the OSHA Website. This directive does not address policy clearance procedures, which are explained in OSHA Instructions ADM 8-0.2, PUB 8.4A and elsewhere.
Director of Information Technology (DIT). Primary responsibility for management of OSHA's Internet rests with the Director of Information Technology. Also, as the agency's Chief Information Officer (CIO), the Director is responsible for:
Ensuring that the Agency's Internet, Intranet, and Extranet systems are operational twenty-four hours a day, seven days a week.
Ensuring that the Agency's Internet, Intranet and Extranet procedures, including guidance provided by the Department and other responsible authorities, are followed, and that Agency Internet policy is kept current and congruent with DOL internet policies and procedures. (Secretary of Labor's Order 2-2000, U.S. Department of Labor Internet Services, and related documents.)
Developing, implementing and maintaining a security plan for all agency computer systems, including the Internet, Intranet and Extranet.
Budgeting and planning for Agency Internet and Intranet infrastructure.
Designating the OSHA Webmaster.
Reporting on OSHA Internet and Intranet Activity to DOL, GSA and OMB.
Providing staff support for the Internet Technical Advisory Group.
Providing technical instructions, protocols, and training as necessary, for the efficient operation of OSHA's Web-related services.
Providing development and maintenance support of OSHA Web services.
Director, Office of Public Affairs (OPA). The Director is responsible for:
Ensuring, during the clearance process, that Departmental public information guidelines for the Internet are followed, including clearance of commercial links.
Designating an OPA representative to participate in the Internet Technical Advisory Group.
Carrying out OPA's general responsibilities under this instruction.
Managing the Agency's pre-release clearance process for all news releases and publications.
Director of Administrative Programs (DAP). The Director is responsible for administering OSHA's Directives program as described in OSHA Instructions ADM 8-0.2, ADM 8-0.3 and 8-0.4 which establish procedures for the pre-release clearance of all new and revised policies and procedures.
Directorate Heads, Directors of Free-standing Offices, and Regional Administrators. Directors and Regional Administrators are responsible for:
Designating and supporting Web Officers representing their organizational units. These Web Officers are assigned responsibility for coordinating clearance and posting of their respective organizational units' materials on the OSHA Website, OSHA Intranet and the OSHA Extranet.
Developing, clearing, maintaining and performing periodic reviews of all Internet, Intranet and Extranet materials and pages from their organizations.
Ensuring accuracy and currency of all content produced and maintained respectively by the Regions, Directorates or Free-standing Offices on the Internet, Intranet or Extranet.
Cooperating in efforts to assure that OSHA's mission and customers are well-served through effective use of the Agency's Internet, Intranet and Extranet tools.
Webmaster (Internet Coordinator). The OSHA Webmaster is responsible for:
Conducting daily operations necessary for support and development of OSHA's Internet, Intranet and Extranet activities.
Ensuring that the OSHA Website is in compliance with government-wide statutes, rules and policy statements which deal with the collection, dissemination, preservation and privacy of, and access to, government information resources. This includes testing of all Webpages to ensure that they are Rehabilitation Act, Section 508 compliant.
Ensuring that all material posted on the OSHA Website has been properly cleared in accordance with Section X.
Maintaining a log of all material added to, removed from or changed on the Internet, Intranet and Extranet, and notifying all Web Officers of significant changes, additions or deletions. This includes maintaining clearance documentation for commercial links.
Retaining and disposing of materials placed on, changed or added to the OSHA Internet, Intranet and Extranet in compliance with applicable OSHA, DOL and Government-wide policies, regulations and laws.
Chairing the Internet Technical Advisory Group.
Providing guidance, technical assistance, training and support to the agency's Web Officers.
Posting and maintaining on the OSHA Intranet a current record of the names, locations, e-mail addresses and telephone numbers of agency Web Officers, and members of the Internet Technical Advisory Group.
Serving as OSHA's representative on DOL Internet Work Groups.
- Ensuring that a periodic review (for accuracy and currency) of material on the Internet, Intranet and Extranet is performed by originating offices, and notifying offices, as needed, for follow-up action.
Defining and granting access to the Extranet.
Web Officers. As representatives of their Directorates, Free-standing Offices and Regional Offices, Web Officers are designated by Directors and Regional Administrators and are delegated authority to carry out defined responsibilities related to the OSHA Website. Typically, they may be responsible for:
Serving as gatekeepers for material to be posted on the Internet, Intranet and Extranet by offices within each Directorate, Free-standing Office, or Region.
Ensuring accuracy and currency of all content produced and maintained on the Internet, Intranet and Extranet by offices and staff within each Directorate, Free-standing Office and Regional Office.
Ensuring that all appropriate concurrences have been obtained before submitting any new information or materials for posting on the Web.
Complying with the requirements set forth in this Instruction for posting on the Web.
Reviewing material on the Website for which their organizations are responsible, on a recurrent basis, to ensure that it is current and accurate.
Serving as members of the Internet Technical Advisory Group.
Information Technology Executive Steering Committee (ITESC). ITESC is an internal advisory group, composed of top-level managers, who represent the whole OSHA family. ITESC provides advice regarding a wide range of issues related to OSHA's information technology system. With regard to OSHA's Internet, it is responsible for providing advice on broad questions of OSHA's Internet, Intranet and Extranet capabilities, procedures and policies.
Internet Technical Advisory Group (ITAG). ITAG is an internal advisory group, chaired by the OSHA Webmaster, which provides advice on assigned technical, web-related topics, to the Director of Information Technology. Its members are the web officers of OSHA Directorates and Regional Offices. While it may occasionally meet in person, it will function primarily through internet contacts and conference calls. ITAG is expected to address issues related to such matters as: uniformity among office pages, electronic format requirements for web documents, amendments to current requirements to meet requirements of the Americans with Disabilities Act, of the 1988 Rehabilitation Act (Section 508) and new or emerging technologies which could affect OSHA's internet services. In addition to providing advice to the Director of Information Technology on these matters, it will serve as a vehicle for two way communication within OSHA on internet-related technical matters.
Clearing Materials To Be Posted on the OSHA Website.
General. The concurrence and approval process described here is intended to ensure that all material posted on the OSHA Website conforms to applicable policies and procedures.
Directors of Directorates and Free-Standing Offices, and Regional Administrators are responsible for clearance of materials which will appear on the OSHA Website. This includes obtaining necessary concurrences from other components of the organization.
Clearance procedures are explained in OSHA Instructions ADM 8-0.2, ADM 8-0.3,ADM 8-0.4 and PUB 8.4A. These procedures may be changed from time to time, and new procedures may be added. Clearance for posting on the Internet will always be based on the most current procedures and policies.
Materials which have been cleared using the OSHA policy directives referenced above receive no further clearance for content before posting on the Internet, Intranet and Extranet.
Clearance of Links to External Websites. (See also: Appendix A) Links from OSHA Web pages to links in other organizations, institutions, associations, businesses, etc. require special clearances.
Clearance Approval. Hypertext links to new or significantly revised commercial sites (.com), non-profit sites (.org) or educational institutions (.edu) must be submitted to the Office of Public Affairs for approval in advance of circulating draft pages for concurrence.
OPA will determine whether Departmental approval is required, and if so, it will coordinate the process of obtaining that approval. External links are approved or rejected on a case-by-case basis.
See Appendix A, page 1 for clearance approval criteria, and Appendix A-2 for a mandatory checklist which must be included with any request for clearance of an outside link.
Link Verification. Prior to submission of the link for approval, the originating office must verify the accuracy of the outside URL address.
Link Content Review. The originating office must also review the content of the external page and secondary pages to ensure that no inappropriate materials are being linked from OSHA.
Disclaimer and Exit Page. For any link to an external URL, a standard disclaimer and an exit page are required. The Webmaster shall provide examples of standard, acceptable disclaimers and exit pages.
Graphics or logos depicting companies or products or providing linksto pages on commercial sites shall not appear on OSHA Web pages.
The definition of "companies or products" includes application plug-in software, Web browser software, search services or any other Web service (e.g., Adobe, Acrobat Reader, Netscape, Infoseek), as well as conventional firms and their goods and services.
Steps for Clearing New Materials for Internet Posting. Directors of Directorates and Free-Standing Offices, and Regional Administrators shall follow these steps to have new material, which has completed required clearances as required by ADM 8-0.2, ADM 8-0.3 and ADM 8-0.4, and PUB 8.4A, posted on the Internet.
Send the Webmaster the new materials in electronic format, accompanied by cover memorandum, under the signature of the Director or Regional Administrator, which provides these instructions, as appropriate:
Specify whether the material will be placed on the Internet, Intranet and/or Extranet.
Specify the date on which the material is to be posted on the Website. When materials involve new policies, reports or other products of the agency, it is the responsibility of the Director or Regional Administrator to coordinate the timing of posting of materials on the web with the Office of Public Affairs.
If material is to be placed on the Extranet, specify who shall have access to the material. The Webmaster will assign a password and provide appropriate instructions to the Extranet user.
State that the material was cleared following procedures set forth in ADM 8-0.2, ADM 8-0.3, ADM 8-0.4 and PUB 8.4A, as appropriate.
If the material includes a link to an outside site, state that it was cleared by OPA or that it is a site which does not require clearance (e.g., a government agency site).
State that the Website has been searched for materials which are affected by the new material (e.g., a guidance document or standard interpretation). State also that the new material does not conflict with established OSHA policy or procedure and that the new material does not conflict with other materials posted on the OSHA website. Provide the Webmaster with a list of any conflicting documents, and instructions as to any document(s) that should be removed and placed in an archive file. In that case, the removal action shall be noted on the Website at an appropriate location.
Webmaster's Review. Review by the OSHA Webmaster is limited to review of document format and review of supporting clearance documentation, to ensure that all requirements for posting have been met. The Webmaster takes the following steps:
Site Clearance Archive. The OSHA Webmaster shall ensure that clearance documentation is complete and shall copy agency clearance documents to a site archive for the OSHA Website on the OSHA Intranet.
Fit and Finish Review. The OSHA Webmaster examines final format and syntax. This step is taken to ensure that draft pages meet all site standards in the "Technical Specifications Checklist for OSHA Website Pages" are met. (See Appendix B.) The OSHA Webmaster shall assist the originating unit, if necessary, in meeting these requirements.
Posting to the Public Server. Following the final fit and finish check and any necessary corrections, the files are posted to the OSHA Website public server. The OSHA Webmaster shall notify all concerned Web Officers of new materials posted each day.
Updating Site Indexes. The site index is updated nightly; if, however, there is an urgent need to do so, the index can be updated immediately when new material is added to the site. Request this service directly from the OSHA Webmaster.
Steps for Clearing Changes to Existing Materials.
Grammatical and typographical changes. Purely editorial changes which do not alter the original meaning of the text, require clearance only by the originating unit. The Web Officer for the originating office shall notify the OSHA Webmaster via e-mail, at firstname.lastname@example.org to identify the specific pages and corrections.
Exception: In the case of OSHA Directives, only the OSHA Directives Officer is authorized to make changes to OSHA Directives without further approval by the Assistant Secretary. (Se also X.C.1.f)
Minor Factual Changes. Minor factual changes, such as updating telephone numbers, program statistics (e.g., the number of VPP participants), or a new number assigned to a publication need only the clearance of the responsible Director or Regional Administrator.
Exception: In the case of OSHA Directives, only the OSHA Directives Officer is authorized to make changes to OSHA Directives without further approval by the Assistant Secretary. (Se also X.C.1.f)
Significant Changes. Changes that alter original meaning of existing pages or applications or resulting data, reports or output of an application are required to conform with the requirements for clearance of new materials.
Removal of Cleared Material on the OSHA Website. Materials which become outdated; are in conflict with established policy or procedure; or are in conflict with other materials on the Web; or are found to be in error must be removed from the Webpage as soon as possible. (Such materials may be identified, for example, during periodic reviews of the Website.) A removed document may be restored to the Webpage when the Webmaster has received authorization from the responsible office, accompanied by appropriate clearance documents.
NOTE: Directives published under ADM 8.3 can be removed only after they have been canceled by a directive. Policy materials (as defined by ADM 8-0.2) which are under review, e.g., in cases of conflicting policy statements, should be so marked..
Permanent Removal. Permanent removal of materials from the Internet may be requested only by the originating office or the Assistant Secretary. Any other source which believes that a document should be removed must contact the originating office.
Temporary Removal. When there is an urgent need to do so, materials may be temporarily removed immediately, pending policy decisions, by notification to the Webmaster through the Director of Information Technology. In such cases, it may be appropriate to remove the material in question to an archive file. The Webmaster shall ensure that readers are informed that the document is under review and that the information in it may be incorrect in some regard.
Notice of Removal. All Directorates, Free-standing Office and Regional Offices shall be notified by the originating office when items are proposed for permanent removal. When a document is actually removed from the Web, Directorate, Free-standing Offices and Regional Offices shall be notified by the Webmaster.
Archived materials. Materials which are permanently removed from the OSHA Website shall be placed in an archive file, where they remain for historical purposes, in accordance with applicable statutes and regulations.
Records Retention. Removal, retention and disposal of materials placed on the OSHA Website are governed by Federal statutes and regulations, and by OSHA policies as promulgated in OSHA Instruction ADM 12-0.4A. Refer to the OSHA Webmaster for guidance on this topic.
General Requirements on the OSHA Website.
Official Use. All information disseminated through Internet by OSHA shall be directly related to the official duties and responsibilities of individuals and offices fulfilling their assigned missions consistent with OSHA, DOL, and federal government policy.
Government Information Locator Service (GILS). Information sources and products on OSHA Web pages will, when appropriate, have GILS records created for them, so that the source or product may be identified using the GILS.
Restricted Access. Sensitive, confidential, or private information shall not be placed in publicly available directories. Documents and collections that are not officially public (i.e., discussion drafts, prototypes, collections which are in development, etc.) which need to be reviewed, for example, by advisory committees shall be placed, as a minimum, in restricted, password-controlled directories. Pages which are password protected shall be excluded from the site-wide, full-text index.
Security. Firewall hardware and software shall be used to protect internal agency servers from public access. Applications developed for public` Web servers accessible through the Internet shall be evaluated for impact on security of agency systems. The Directorate of Information Technology has the responsibility to develop, implement, and maintain a security plan for all agency computer systems, including Internet, Intranet, and Extranet servers.
Outside Duplication of OSHA Website Pages, Graphics, and Banners. OSHA strongly discourages outside organizations from using its graphics or banner on their own pages, because such use causes confusion and can misrepresent the Agency and its policies. Sites which misuse OSHA graphics are notified that this is inappropriate, misrepresents the information, and may provide inaccurate or dated information. The sites are encouraged to provide a direct link to the pages on the OSHA Website.
Pages and Responsibilities Defined.
OSHA Home Page. The OSHA home page is the primary access point for OSHA's Website. The OSHA Home Page provides links to information, material and services supporting the OSHA program. Its URL address is: http://www.osha.gov. The Webmaster is responsible for keeping the Home Page up to date.
Office Pages. Current pages are included for Directorates, Free-standing Offices and Regions. These pages include contact information, phone numbers and mailing addresses for all offices.
Contact Information shall be kept up to date by Web Officers.
Offices may also elect to describe supported programs and services and to add links to applicable program pages.
Pages may include links to e-mail forms, which will forward messages to agency addressees anonymously (to avoid spamming problems).
Program Pages. Pages shall be maintained and updated by responsible offices for all agency programs and services. These pages shall include a link to the contact information for the responsible office.
State Pages. Pages for each State shall be maintained, listing contact information for the Consultation Project, and for the State plan (if applicable). Links will also be maintained from the OSHA Home Page to the Websites of individual State occupational safety and health programs, and State consultation projects. Content for these pages is the responsibility of the Directorate of Federal-State Operations in coordination with State Designees, Consultation Project Managers, and Regional Administrators.
Page Technical Content. (See also: Appendix B) Webpage technical requirements may be updated from time to time. The Internet Technical Advisory Group will recommended additions, deletions and amendments to these basic requirements.
Page Date. Each page on the OSHA Website shall include the date the page was posted or updated by the Webmaster, in the page source code.
Format. All HTML pages must follow the standard OSHA Website template, which includes a streamlined banner to identify the pages as OSHA pages and standard navigation links consistent with the rest of the site. Pages submitted for posting must be checked for errors in HTML syntax, links, spelling, grammar and duplicated text.
PDF Files. If it is critical to duplicate a document as it appears in print or other medium, then the document shall be converted to a text-enabled PDF file. Text-enabled PDF allows text in the document to be indexed as part of the site index.
Consistent Look and Feel. All pages must use approved templates for tables of contents, content pages and index pages, in order to maintain a consistent "look and feel". Templates, banners and other technical specifications in use on the OSHA Website can be obtained from the OSHA Webmaster; they are also posted on the OSHA Intranet, under "OSHA Public Website-Clearance and Posting Procedures".
"Site" and "Home Page". These terms shall be used only to refer to the OSHA Website or the OSHA Home Page. For example, it is not appropriate to use the term "Directorate of Information Technology Home Page" to refer to the DIT Office Page. This requirement is intended to reduce confusion among users.
Dead Links. "Dead Links," or "broken links", inevitably occur over time, as Website pages are modified, moved or deleted. Dead links can quickly damage a Website's credibility.
The Webmaster is responsible for implementing procedures routinely to identify dead links and for notifying affected offices. If they are not corrected, dead links shall be removed by the Webmaster 10 working days after notifying the responsible office.
Each office or project is responsible for monitoring and maintaining its pages. This includes appropriate 'repairs' when dead links are discovered, and preventive actions to avoid creating dead links when changes are made to Office or Program pages.
When changing URLs on OSHA servers, coordination with external sites which point to those URLs may be required, and shall be performed by responsible offices. Software applications shall be used, whenever possible, to perform this task. The OSHA Webmaster can provide further information and assistance, upon request.
Two distinct types of dates are required for Web Page materials, as follows:
1) The date that content was issued by the agency ( the issuance date) shall be included on pages added to the OSHA Website. It shall be located at the top of the page.
2) The date that the content is actually posted on the Website is the page date. The page date shall be included in the page source code for the HTML page; it can be viewed through the browser software.
3) Both the page date and the issuance date shall be logged by the Webmaster.
Contacts for Comments. Materials submitted for posting on the Website must include the name a contact person to whom comments may be about content may be forwarded by the Webmaster. This person may be a Web Officer. Do not include e-mail addresses for the contact persons in the posted materials; the Webmaster will forward comments as they are received. This arrangement is intended to prevent 'spamming'.
Wraps in Hyperlinks. Whenever possible, do not allow a hyperlink to "wrap" from one line to the next, in order to avoid confusion.
Table of Contents for Documents. Documents longer than 3 pages shall contain a table of contents near the top of the document.
The table of contents shall hyperlink to each section of the document.
Each section shall be part of a continuous document, but it shall be visually separated from the previous and following sections.
Each section shall contain a hyperlink icon to return to the document's table of contents.
Links to Large Files. Links to files larger than 100kb shall include an explicit note of the file size.
Page Content Maintenance. Effective customer service, and the credibility of OSHA's public access Website, depend on the timeliness, currency and accuracy of information. Maintenance of information posted on the Website is a shared responsibility which requires coordination and cooperation between the Webmaster, Web Officers and the other members of the OSHA family. The following guidance is intended to clarify the nature of these responsibilities.
Content Responsibility. Documents posted on the OSHA Website are the responsibility of their respective originating offices, which must ensure their timeliness and accuracy.
Review and Updating Process. Each Regional Administrator and Director of a Directorate or Free-standing Office shall ensure that an internal process is in place in each Region, Directorate or Office to provide periodic review, updating and removal of documents on the Website for which they are responsible.
Time-sensitive information must be posted as promptly as possible. Notify the OSHA Webmaster when material must be posted more quickly than the routine overnight updating of the Webpage.
Review documents on the Website at least twice each year to ensure currency of posted materials.
Remove out of-date-information promptly and/or provide updated materials as soon as they are available.
Anticipate changes when possible and "flag" materials which are likely to be affected by new policy; for example a new standard interpretation or court decision may affect several enforcement-related documents.
Online Versions of Print Documents. Online versions of documents are easily updated and may be more current than printed versions. The Webmaster shall retain an electronic version of outdated documents in an historical archive file.
"Under Construction". Incomplete pages shall not be posted on the OSHA Website. Pages shall not contain references to information that is "under construction" or "coming soon". Responsible offices shall remove such notations from existing pages.
OSHA Intranet. Intranet pages are maintained and administered for the use of members of the OSHA family only. Information contained on the Intranet should not be circulated outside of OSHA, since it has not necessarily received clearances needed for such distribution.
The general policies for document posting for the Intranet are explained at Section X, above. In addition, the following guidance applies:
Responsibilities/ Clearance Approvals. Release procedures for content on the Intranet to staff in the OSHA family are comparable to those for disseminating any internal document. All such documents require concurrence with appropriate offices, in accordance with OSHA Instructions ADM 8-0.2, ADM 8-0.3, ADM 8-0.4, and PUB 8.4A.
Directorate Head or Regional Administrator. Responsible for clearing all material posted by the Directorate or Region on the OSHA Intranet. When submitting materials for Intranet posting, the Director or Regional Administrator shall provide the Webmaster with a statement that the material submitted for posting on the Intranet has undergone necessary clearances (as noted above) or that such clearances are not necessary for the material in question.
Technical Support Available. Any new material or applications which require additional DIT support for implementation on the Intranet shall also be submitted to the Director, Directorate of Information Technology, for review. Only the Web Officers or staff designated by the Directorate or Region will have access to directories on a test server to be established to assist offices in posting Intranet pages.
Clearance documentation. Each Directorate or Region shall maintain an internal record of all additions or changes authorized for posting on its office pages or other pages it has originated on the OSHA Intranet.
Intranet Links to External Websites. Links to outside sites shall be maintained. An exit page and disclaimer are required on all outside links so as to clearly identify to staff in the OSHA family that these pages are maintained outside the agency. No graphics or logos for companies/products or for links to companies/products shall be used.
OSHA Intranet Home Page. The OSHA Intranet Home Page will be modeled after the current OSHA public Web Home Page. This will preserve a common "look and feel" on both the Internet and Intranet and enable staff to easily access public pages as well as internal pages. Similar navigation buttons and access tools will be used, including "search" and "index".
Pages for Offices. The Webmaster will assist offices which have developed office pages or are developing office pages to complete pages for posting on the OSHA Intranet. Assistance shall also be provided to all other offices in creating a page describing the office and its activities, including current programs and projects. Office pages may include material cross-linked to other pages accessible on the Intranet, on the public OSHA Website, or on sites from other government entities, nonprofit organizations, or commercial entities.
Program and Project Pages. Offices shall retain ownership of and responsibility for content posted on program and project pages. These pages shall be based on a basic Intranet page template.
Style and Format. All pages must conform to a basic common format to ensure a consistent "look and feel" for all OSHA Intranet pages. Current templates can be obtained from the Internet Coordinator via E-mail at Webmaster@osha.gov. Templates contain standard graphics to be used for banners and navigation buttons.
Government Mandates Affecting Internet Requirements. The OSHA Webmaster is responsible for ensuring that the OSHA Website is in compliance with government-wide statutes, rules and policy statements which deal with the collection, dissemination, preservation and privacy of, and access to, government information resources. This includes testing of all Webpages to ensure that they are compliant with the ADA and the Rehabilitation Act, Section 508.
OMB encourages Federal agencies to use the Web in a manner consistent with the agency's mission, within the context of strategic and investment planning, and in support of work process that have been appropriately redesigned and as a tool to augment existing information management practices, services and delivery methods.
Appendix C provides further information on these requirements.
Clearance Criteria for Links to External Sites
In accordance with DOL guidance, agencies may automatically offer links to other government Websites and university Websites. OSHA's policy is also to review university websites before posting their links. Linking to commercial sites is permissible only if the information is important to the agency's mission and not available elsewhere. When OSHA finds information on commercial sites critical to further safety and health programs, the agency shall link directly to the appropriate technical documents containing the information rather than to the home page of the commercial entity. These links will continue to require advance ASP and SOL clearance and will include a link to an exit page containing a disclaimer notifying users that pages that they are about to link to are not maintained by OSHA .
OSHA will link to nonprofit organizations such as professional groups, trade associations and unions and technical documents on those sites on the basis of two criteria. First, the site or specific technical document must offer significant, timely, useful and apolitical occupational safety and health technical information that supports the agency's mission. (In other words, a link to an organization for safety and health professionals that merely lists membership information or information about the organization would not be acceptable.) Second, technical documents recommended for inclusion must be thoroughly reviewed and found accurate by the appropriate OSHA Web Officers.
Documents will be reviewed by the appropriate Directorate, Regional Office, or Free-standing Office Web Officer at least twice a year to assure that the links still provide useful information. The links can be removed at any time if they no longer meet OSHA's criteria. As OSHA Website visitors transfer to a nonprofit site/document listed by OSHA, they will receive a disclaimer indicating that OSHA does not necessarily endorse the organization or the information or ensure its accuracy.
The following check list shall be used to summarize information relevant to the review criteria for authorizing linking pages on the OSHA Website to external Websites and submitted electronically to the Office of Public Affairs for clearance approval. Links to Federal, State, or Local government agency pages do not need clearance.
|1. Is the Link located at a college or university? If so, does it link to mission-related information that is essentially non-commercial and not available on a government-related Website?|
|2. Is the college or university link non-commercial, or does it promote publications, products or services by the institution or its staff?|
|Organizational or Commercial Links|
|1. Does the link provide essential mission-related information?|
|2. Is the information significant, useful and unbiased?|
|3. Is the linked page primarily technical in nature, such that advertising is not obtrusive and/or mixed with the relevant technical information?|
|4. Does the link provide information that is not available on other non-profit or government Websites? If not, do other Websites better meet these criteria?|
|5. Is the link up-to-date at the time of posting?|
|6. Does the link lead directly to appropriate technical documents rather than to the home page of the commercial site?|
|7. Does the link lead more-or-less directly to something advocating a political party or adversary's position on OSHA issues?|
|8.. Does the link contain information contrary to OSHA policy or standards? If so, what justifies inclusion of this link?|
|9. Can the currency and accuracy of this link be verified periodically? How often must it be revisited?|
Technical Specifications Check List for OSHA Website Pages
The following items shall be verified for all Web pages designed for posting on the OSHA Website.
|___ 1.||All standard text shall appear in the "Verdana" font face with "Arial" as the optional face - expressed as: "Verdana, Arial" in the Font Tag. Standard default text size shall be set to size 2 (which is roughly 11 point) - expressed as: size="2" in the Font Tag.|
|___ 2.||All standard/reusable images, such as backgrounds, buttons, arrows, logos, banners, etc. shall be stored in the servers main image subdirectory -- for pages residing on the Salt Lake server, the path is www.osha-slc.gov/gif -- for pages residing on the National Office server, the path is www.osha.gov/images|
|___ 3.||In order to comply with the Rehabilitation Act of 1998 (Section 508 and with ADA
(Americans with Disabilities Act), all images and graphical buttons, whether used for
links or otherwise, must contain "ALT" and "TITLE" attribute descriptions within the
IMG tag. If the image is for display only, these attribute descriptions must describe the
image itself (what is it), or if used for hyper-linking purposes, must indicate the name of
the resource (where the hyperlink goes). For example:
Explain the view of the drawing.
IMG SRC = "house.gif" ALT= "Simple drawing of a house.">
Explain the view of the drawing and the purpose
of the drawing as used in the hyperlink.
<A href = "default.htm"><IMG src="house.gif"
ALT-"Simple drawing of a house linking back to the homepage of this site"></a>
|___ 4.||All pages must be laid out in a table(s) with a maximum width not to exceed 610 pixels and all text, images, boxes and other tables must not extend beyond the right margin (normally defined as the right margin of the main page banner image).|
|___ 5.||The overall color scheme of the site must be maintained. Other colors may be used but must coordinate with the primary colors on the main OSHA banner, blue pipe background and/or mustard tan main background and buttons. The standard Website color palette is available on the Sample Page.|
|___ 6.||An HTML DDT (Document Data Type) line must be included in each file above the opening HTML tag: <!DOCTYPE HTML PUBLIC "-//W3C//DID HTML 3.2//EN"> The actual tag must be applicable to the DID for the HTML level used on the page.|
|___ 7.||A comment line must be listed immediately below the HTML DID That indicates the
name, location and date of the last person to "touch" the file. e.g.
<-- Last Updated: 1/4/1999 - Gary McCall - OSHA Salt Lake Technical Center-->
|___ 8.|| All pages must include the "tracking" image file located at the following URL:
scripts.osha-slc.gov/gif/track.gif This file is used from this URL, regardless of what
server the pages reside on (SLC or N.O.) and this image is part of a scripted usage
tracking system. This image must be inserted just above the close of the BODY tag at
the bottom of each page -- coded as follows:
<IMG SRC="http://scripts.osha-slc.gov/gif/track.gif" border="0" width="1" height="1"
ALT="tracking image" TITLE="tracking image">
|___ 9.|| All pages regardless of level within the structure), must use the standard OSHA banner:
http://www.osha-slc.gov/gif/bannerimagemap.gif (Salt Lake) or
http://www.osha.gov/images/bannerimagemap.gif (National Office)
height="50" width="600" border="0" Usemap="#OSHABannermap"
Alt="OSHA Banner Image Map" Title="OSHA Banner Image Map">
<!-- #$DESCRIPTION:OSHA Default Banner - Image Map -->
<!-- #$AUTHOR:U.S. DOL - OSHA Salt Lake Technical Center -->
<!-- #$DATE:Thu Mar 11 10:02:44 1999 -->
<!-- #$PATH:http://www.osha-slc.gov/gif/ or
<!-- #$GIF:bannerimagemap.gif -->
<AREA SHAPE=POLY ALT="OSHA's Main Home Page"
HREF="/index.html" Title="OSHA's Main Home
<AREA SHAPE=POLY ALT="OSHA's Subject Index Page"
HREF="/html/subject-index.html" Title="OSHA's Subject Index Page">
<AREA SHAPE=POLY ALT="OSHA's Search Page"
Title="OSHA's Search Page">
<AREA SHAPE=default ALT="OSHA HOME PAGE"
HREF="/index.html" Title="OSHA HOME PAGE">
|___ 10.||Additional navigation links may be used below the main banner.|
|___ 11.||All pages used for navigation (regardless of level within the structure), must have a minimum of 3 primary links centered at the very bottom of the page (as the last items): | USDOL | CONTACT INFORMATION | DISCLAIMER | and link to: www.dol.gov, www.osha-slc.gov/html/Feed_Back.html, and www.osha-slc.gov/html/disclaim_home.html respectively.|
|___ 12.||All document level pages (indicated when the user reaches the target document), shall use some form of reverse navigation link, aka. cookie crumbs (usually with the blue left-pointing arrow) which will help the user get back to the referencing index or main collection TOC page.|
|___ 13.||All document pages must use the main OSHA Banner and the blue-pipe background -- with BODY background color set to white - expressed as a hexidecimal value "ffffff" in the color settings of the BODY Tag. NOTE: Colored text must not be coded with the color NAME as this feature is not supported in all browsers.|
|___ 14.||The overall "fit and finish" of the page, shall be easily recognizable as being a page from the OSHA Website collection.|
|___ 15.||All hyperlinks to resources/materials outside of the "DOL Family" must be routed through a redirect script -- i.e., user may not be taken directly to an "outside" source without first going to a Office of Public Affairs approved Disclaimer Page, which must contain an "action" link -- which the user must press or click, in order to proceed. Documents residing on (being hosted directly by) an OSHA server, which were not authored by the Agency, must contain a copyright and/or Public Affairs approved disclaimer and/or a Public Affairs approved statement from the author regarding the nature and intended purpose of the material.|
Government Mandates Affecting Internet Requirements
The following statutes, rules and policy statements address various aspects of information management in
general, including some aspects of administration of Government-sponsored Websites.
Freedom of Information Act (FOIA). All DOL components must make certain types of records available electronically including:
Final opinions and orders in adjudicating administrative cases.
Final statements of policy and interpretations that have not been published in the Federal Register.
Administrative staff manuals and instructions to staff that affect a member of the public.
Copies of records that have been the subject of a FOIA request and are of sufficient public interest that the agency believes other persons are likely to request them.
For detailed information about agency policies and procedures related to FOIA, contact the OSHA Office of Public Affairs.
Rehabilitation Act. All federal agencies need to ensure that information provided on their Websites is in a format accessible by people with disabilities. This requires the page to be tested for ADA compliance or a text version of the page be created and maintained. Guidance:
Create transcripts for audio and video avoiding the use of image maps.
Avoid use of a) image maps; b) using ALT (alternative) text with images; and c) limiting the use of tables.
PDF files may now be used, because a special Adobe service free to the public, enables access to the disabled.
If information in an accessible format cannot be provided, it is permissible to add an e-mail address or phone number to the Web page so that the public can call to get the information.
Information must be accessible within a reasonable amount of time.
Comply with these rules when composing Web pages:
Provide Alternate Text
Meaning must be independent of color.
Identify language changes.
Style sheet independent.
Update equivalents for dynamic content.
Redundant text links for server-side image maps.
Use client-side image maps whenever possible.
Row and Column Headers in Data Tables.
Data cells must be associated with header cells.
Title all frames.
Synchronize multimedia equivalents.
Provide option to skip repetitive links.
Small Business Regulatory Enforcement and Fairness Act (SBREFA).
SBREFA helps to foster a regulatory environment more responsive to small businesses. The OSHA Website will be used to disseminate new material (e.g., small entity compliance guides) and new program information required under the act or defined in recommendations from the Regulatory Fairness Program.
President's Initiative on Education. This initiative encourages agencies to develop resources on the Internet targeted towards education.
Other Government Mandates.
Computer Security Act of 1987 (40 U.S.C. 759 note)
Copyright Act of 1976 (Title 17, United States Code, Sections 101-810) and Copyright Basics, Circular 1, Copyright Office, Library of Congress, Washington, DC, January 1991
Establishment of Government Information Locator Service OMB Bulletin No. 95-01
Federal Depository Library Program (44 U.S.C. Section 1902)
Federal Records Act (44 U.S.C. Chapters 29, 31, 33, 35), National Archives and Records Administration Regulations (36 CFR Chapter 12, Subchapter B, "Records Management"
Clinger/Cohen Act (Information Technology Management Reform Act of 1996) (40 U.S.C. Chapter 25), Executive Order 13011
OMB Circular A-130, "Management of Federal Information Resources"
Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995 (44 U.S.C. Chapter 35), 61 CFR 6428 (February 20, 1996)
Privacy Act (5 U.S.C. 552a)
U.S. Department of Labor (DOL) Plan to Improve Accessibility to Electronic Information Technology (October 1999)
NPRM Proposed Standards (July 2000) for Web Content Accessibility. The NPRM is working on proposed standards which will outline requirements for Web content accessability. The proposed standards specify thirteen required elements which will comprise an accessible Web page if met. The thirteen elements are listed below:
A text equivalent for every non-text element shall be provided via "alt" (alternative text attribute), "longdesc" (long description tag), or in element content.
Web pages shall be designed so that all information required for navigation or meaning is not dependent on the ability to identify specific colors.
Changes in the natural language (e.g., English to French) of a documents' text and any text equivalents shall be clearly identified.
Documents shall be organized so they are readable without requiring an associated style sheet.
Web pages shall update equivalents for dynamic content whenever the dynamic content changes.
Redundant text links shall be provided for each active region of a server-side image map.
Client-side image maps shall be used whenever possible in place of server-side image maps.
Data tables shall provide identification of row and column headers.
Markup shall be used to associate data cells and header cells for data tables that have two or more logical levels of row or column headers.
Frames shall be titled with text that facilitates frame identification and navigation.
Pages shall be usable when scripts, applets, or other programmatic objects are turned off or are not supported, or shall provide equivalent information on an alternative accessible page.
Equivalent alternatives for any multimedia presentation shall be synchronized with the presentation.
An appropriate method shall be used to facilitate the easy tracking of page content that provides users of assistive technology the option to skip repetitive navigation links.
Director, Office of Public Affairs
Directors of Free-Standing Offices
Government Information Locator Service (GILS)
Small Business Regulatory Enforcement and Fairness Act (SBREFA)