OSHA News Release - (Archived) Table of Contents|
TRADE NEWS RELEASE
Thursday, November 21, 2002
Contact: Frank Meilinger
Phone: (202) 693-1999
WASHINGTON -- In an agreement signed today, the Occupational Safety and Health Administration and the Small Business Administration pledged to work together to help small businesses reduce their ergonomic hazards through increased outreach and education.
"OSHA welcomes the opportunity to work closely with the SBA to help millions of small businesses across the country reduce ergonomic hazards in their workplaces," said OSHA Administrator John Henshaw. "This partnership enables us to better educate the small business community about the assistance that is available to them and learn from their input and feedback on our efforts."
The memorandum of understanding was signed by Administrator Henshaw; Thomas M. Sullivan, Chief Counsel, SBA Office of Advocacy; and Michael Barrera, SBA National Ombudsman.
Under the agreement, OSHA and SBA will establish an information sharing process to distribute ergonomics program information to small businesses. The partners also will create a referral procedure to submit small business input on industry and task-specific ergonomics guidelines.
"We're pleased to be partners with OSHA in its efforts to reach small business as it develops new industry specific ergonomic guidelines," said Thomas M. Sullivan, Chief Counsel for Advocacy. "With the new guidelines and this agreement, OSHA can take a big step in listening to the concerns of small business. This new step towards cooperation is great news for small business owners and their employees alike," he said.
The SBA's Office of Advocacy agreed to distribute OSHA ergonomics information and gather comments from small businesses in various industries. In addition, the Office of Advocacy will promote small business access to ergonomics information through The Small Business Advocate and electronic regulatory communications.
The SBA's National Ombudsman will also disseminate OSHA small business resources and educational materials on OSHA's ergonomics plan at regional hearings and fairness boards, small business roundtables, and in its monthly electronic publication RegFair Report.
The MOU signed today is available on OSHA's web site under "What's New" or through the subject index under Memorandums of Understanding.
This news release text is on the Internet at http://www.osha.gov. Information on this release will be made available to sensory impaired individuals upon request. Voice phone: (202) 693-1999.
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