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Congresswoman Rosa DeLauro

Representing the 3rd District of Connecticut

DeLauro Demands Department of Labor Increase OSHA Workplace Inspectors

October 4, 2017
Press Release

WASHINGTON, DC (October 4, 2017) Congresswoman Rosa DeLauro (CT-03) today sent a letter to the Acting Assistant Secretary of Labor on Occupational Safety and Health (OSHA) to express concern regarding the agency’s staffing of inspectors following the lift of the hiring freeze for federal workers earlier this year. These inspectors play a key role in OSHA’s mission of reducing workplace injuries.

“In 2015 alone, 4,800 workers were killed on the job and over 3 million were seriously injured —even with evidence of under reporting. Work related injuries costs businesses in the United States an estimated $198 billion a year according to the National Safety Council. Yet, there are only 1,838 inspectors on the federal and state level to inspect the nearly 8 million workplaces under your agency’s jurisdiction,” wrote DeLauro. “That means OSHA has only enough funding to inspect every workplace under its jurisdiction every 159 years.”

“It is my understanding that your agency has not filled many vacant inspector positions following the Administration’s lift of the hiring freeze on the federal workforce in April 2017. Nearly six months later, I remain concerned about the pace of hiring at your agency as it will have severe consequences on the health and safety of workers,” continued DeLauro. “OSHA should have the adequate staff to help ensure that employers identify and eliminate serious workplace hazards and provide safe workplaces for their workers.”

The full letter is available here.