- Standard Number:
OSHA requirements are set by statute, standards and regulations. Our interpretation letters explain these requirements and how they apply to particular circumstances, but they cannot create additional employer obligations. This letter constitutes OSHA's interpretation of the requirements discussed. Note that our enforcement guidance may be affected by changes to OSHA rules. Also, from time to time we update our guidance in response to new information. To keep apprised of such developments, you can consult OSHA's website at https://www.osha.gov.
July 16, 2018
Mr. George L. Males, CHST
Manafort Brothers, Inc.
414 New Britain Avenue
P.O. Box 99
Plainville, Connecticut 06062
Dear Mr. Males:
Thank you for your letter to the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA). Your letter has been referred to the Directorate of Enforcement Programs for a response. Your letter requested clarification on OSHA’s Access to Employee Exposure and Medical Record standard, 29 CFR 1910.1020. This letter constitutes OSHA’s interpretation only of the requirements discussed herein, and may not be applicable to any questions not delineated within your original correspondence. Your paraphrased question and our response are below.
Question: Would an employer’s posting of OSHA’s Federal Labor Laws poster for annual notification meet its obligations under paragraph 29 CFR 1910.1020(g)(1) to inform employees of:
- 1910.1020(g)(1)(i), The existence, location, and availability of any records covered by this section;
- 1910.1020(g)(1)(ii), The person responsible for maintaining and providing access to records; and
- 1910.1020(g)(1)(iii), Each employee's rights of access to these records.
Response: No. The information being referenced in 29 CFR 1910.1020(g)(1) is not the same information contained on the OSHA poster. Thus, posting the OSHA poster, titled “OSHA Job Safety and Health: It’s the Law,” does not meet the requirements of 1910.1020(g)(1). The OSHA poster is available for free, and it informs workers of their rights under the Occupational Safety and Health Act. All covered employers are required to display the OSHA poster in their workplaces. [See 29 CFR 1903.2]
Conversely, the records covered under 1910.1020(g)(1) are employee exposure and medical records, much of which cannot be posted because of personal privacy rights. An employee exposure record covered under 1910.1020(g)(1) is any record containing information such as environmental (workplace) monitoring information, biological monitoring results, safety data sheets indicating a human health hazard, and/or certain chemical inventories. [See 29 CFR 1910.1020(c)(5)(i-iv)]. An employee medical record is a record concerning the health status of an employee which is made or maintained by a physician, nurse, other health care personnel, or technician. [See 29 CFR 1910.1020(c)(6)].
When employees first enter employment, and at least annually thereafter, the employer must follow 29 CFR 1910.1020(g)(i-iii), which require employers to inform employees of the existence, location, and availability of relevant exposure and medical records. Additionally, employers must provide these records within 15 working days upon request. [See 29 CFR 1910.1020(e)] For your convenience, we have enclosed copies of the OSHA poster and a booklet that explains 29 CFR 1910.1020 (OSHA publication 3110).
Please be aware that the Connecticut Department of Labor’s Division of Occupational Safety and Health (Conn-OSHA) operates its own occupational safety and health program under an OSHA-approved State Plan. The Conn-OSHA adopts and enforces standards and investigates safety and health concerns in public workplaces throughout the state. State Plans are required to have standards and an enforcement program that are “at least as effective” as OSHA’s, but may have different or additional requirements. Please contact Conn-OSHA directly at the address below, for further information and to discuss your specific compliance issue:
Connecticut Department of Labor
Occupational Safety and Health Division
38 Wolcott Hill Road
Wethersfield, CT 06109
Telephone: (860) 263-6900
Thank you for your interest in occupational safety and health. We hope you find this information helpful. OSHA’s requirements are set by statute, standards, and regulations. Our letters of interpretation do not create new or additional requirements but rather explain these requirements and how they apply to particular circumstances. This letter constitutes OSHA’s interpretation of the requirements discussed. From time to time, letters are affected when the agency updates a standard, a legal decision impacts a standard, or changes in technology affect the interpretation. To assure that you are using the correct information and guidance, please consult OSHA’s website at http://www.osha.gov. If you have further questions, please feel free to contact the Office of Health Enforcement at (202) 693-2190.
Thomas Galassi, Director
Directorate of Enforcement Programs