The rights of employees in the workplace
While a majority of Minnesota companies go to great lengths to protect the well-being and safety of their employees, there are organizations that have failed to enforce protocols or simply do not care so much about the conditions of the work environment. When this happens, hazards can create dangerous circumstances that significantly heighten the risks faced by workers. Under federal law, employees are granted specific rights and they have the option of filing a complaint if they feel that their health or safety is endangered at any time.
According to the United States Department of Labor, it was reported that in Minnesota during the year 2016, there were 92 fatalities from work-related accidents. This was a stunning 74 percent increase from the previous year.
Employees should have the option of filing a confidential complaint against their employer if they feel that they are working in an unsafe environment. The Occupational Safety and Health Administration reminds employees that they have several rights that are granted to them under federal law. These include the following:
- The ability to request an OSHA inspection.
- The right to work on machinery that is well-maintained and safe.
- Access to copies of their work illness and injury log.
- The right to adequate training for all job responsibilities.
- The right to be protected from toxic chemicals and other hazards.
- Access to proper safety equipment and gear.
If an OSHA investigation is completed and violations are disclosed, employees have the right to see the reports and to know what their employer was fined for.