On July 17, the Occupational Safety and Health Administration issued its final rule expanding reporting requirements for injury and illness data for employers in high-hazard industries. The rule takes effect on January 1, 2024.
The rule requires certain employers to electronically submit to OSHA information from their OSHA Form 300 (Log of Work-Related Injuries and Illnesses) and OSHA Form 301 (Injury and Illness Incident Report). This data will be published on a searchable database without key context on the injuries and illnesses, likely exposing employers to reputational damage for injuries and illnesses that are not the fault of the workplace or employer. Additionally, employees could see their private, sensitive medical information released to the public.
CWS filed comments on OSHA’s proposal rulemaking in June 2022, in which we cautioned OSHA that “electronic submission and public posting of this data serves only to put employers at risk for improper disclosure, mischaracterization of the data and release of sensitive employer as well as employee information. Smaller entities are particularly vulnerable to release of such information, where mischaracterization of data can irreparably harm their business and individual employee information may be easier to ascertain.”
CWS is deeply concerned about the consequences of this rulemaking.