U.S. laborers put thousands of chemicals to work each day, many potentially harmful, but only a handful that are regulated in the workplace.
If your enterprise leverages chemicals, it is important to think beyond OSHA minimum standards. Transitioning to safer, less toxic chemicals is critically important… presently workers suffer in excess of 190,000 illnesses and 50,000 deaths each year due to chemical exposures. What kinds of illnesses? Well cancer to start. But there are a myriad of other illnesses that affect the entire body: from lungs & kidneys to the central nervous & reproductive systems.
The reality is that switching to safer chemicals can be a tough process and finding safer alternatives can be a daunting task. It can sometimes be difficult to think about starting the process let alone actually pursuing it in detail. However, the potential benefits far exceed what time you might invest in the process. In addition to feeling better about protecting your workers you can:
- Create cost savings by reducing expenses and risk exposure.
- Create greater efficiency through better performance.
- Increase your competitiveness through innovative application of less toxic chemicals.
- Improve your brand positioning by promoting socially responsible practices.
To help OSHA has created a systematic toolkit to help employers and workers with selecting and implementing substitute chemicals in the workplace. Designed for all business types from manufacturing & construction to service-oriented companies such as janitorial companies and auto body repair shops, the toolkit will empower you to create a safer workplace that will benefit both your bottom line and your employee’s state of mind. (We all want to feel like our employer cares about us.)
And as always, remember that your business insurance professional also understands how to mitigate risk and help you with maximizing workplace safety initiatives… so be sure to reach out if you have questions or need a bit of deeper advice on how to strengthen your company while protecting your workforce.
Working together with your insurance professional and armed with information offered by OSHA you can keep your workforce safe, reduce the costs and risks associated with chemical related injury and create a more competitive enterprise in the process…
To get started, you can access the toolkit here: https://www.osha.gov/dsg/safer_chemicals/index.html