FSIS and OSHA Sign Memorandum of Understanding to Protect Workers and Enhance Training
On August 1, FSIS entered into an updated memorandum of understanding (MOU) on worker safety with the U.S. Department of Labor’s Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA).
FSIS Administrator Paul Kiecker said, “I know firsthand what the work environment at FSIS-regulated establishments entails. Our agencies share the goal of protecting the safety and health of workers in FSIS-regulated establishments, including both FSIS and establishment employees.”
Going into effect for five years, the updated MOU provides guidance about how both agencies will collaborate on training, information sharing and workplace hazards. FSIS and OSHA will coordinate FSIS efforts with training on workplace hazards and conditions. The training must be completed within 120 days, with annual refresher training. At FSIS-regulated establishments, OSHA-provided posters will be made available on how to report injuries to OSHA.
Both agencies will continue sharing health and safety data, which will be used to determine if more training or emphasis is needed at FSIS-regulated establishments for FSIS employees. FSIS and OSHA will also share information about new methods or techniques for monitoring and assessing new procedures or chemicals used in FSIS establishments. Where FSIS requires attestations for health and safety protocols, FSIS will provide those to OSHA. This information sharing will benefit both agencies as they collaborate to monitor new practices and worker safety.
The agencies have cooperated for almost 30 years to protect workers, signing their first MOU for worker safety on February 4, 1994. The FSIS workforce is critical to the day-to-day oversight and inspection operations for meat, poultry and egg products at the 6,600 establishments that FSIS regulates.
FSIS Administrator Paul Kiecker and Department of Labor Assistant Secretary for Occupational Safety and Health Douglas L. Parker, shake hands after signing the MOU.
The group from FSIS and OSHA that will lead the implementation of the provisions laid out in the MOU, pictured above with Kiecker and Parker, will work together to ensure that the agencies make available what FSIS employees need to have a safe workplace in establishments. Pictured above, standing, from left: from FSIS Office of Management (OM) — Administrative Services Division Director Yolanda Chambers and OM Deputy Assistant Administrator C. Natalie Lui Duncan; from DOL — Senior Policy Advisor Emily Hargrove and Deputy Assistant Secretary for Occupational Safety and Health Jim Frederick. Pictured, seated from left — Kiecker and Parker.