In this episode, Sheldon goes into his initial thoughts on the OSHA National Emphasis program for COVID-19. He reviews the impact the new compliance enforcement efforts from OSHA to businesses.
Keywords: OSHA, COVID-19, SARS-CoV-2, Sheldon Primus, EHS, Safety FM, Safety, Safety and Health, Safety Consulting, OSHA Compliance, NEP, National Emphasis Program, Face covering, N95, General Duty Clause, Joe Biden, Administration, Enforcement, Citation, Lawsuit, Government, Legislation, OMB, Regulations, EPA, Coronavirus, Vaccine, Vaccinated
[00:00:00] : this episode is powered by Safety FM. Mhm. Welcome to the safety consultant podcast. I am your host, Sheldon Primus. This is the podcast where I teach you the business of being a safety consultant. I'm back. I'm back home. I was doing some work where I was, you know, for some, usually when you're doing consulting, you're gonna end up running with, uh, part of your business will be training. Part of the business will be consulting. Part of your business is going to be, uh, doing online things. It'll be kind of mixed up in all different ways in some cases. Got waves where I would have a wave of man. I'm doing great in this type of training, and then I'll be like, Where's my consultant? Glides and then all of a sudden, I'm like, Whoa, I haven't trained in so long. I've just been doing project after project for consult Consulting work. Uh, so truly, it's an ebb and flow. That's the way it should be, right? Just keep the work coming. That's the That's the key. So this week is going to be a solo week with just me, and I am going to go over, uh, usually do my OSHA update. I'm probably going to start doing this one more often than not, like maybe once a month or twice a month, do update. So that's really what I'm gonna do now is just go through the update of one part of OSHA that has been taking over. It's stuck in my brain right now, and I know it's the rest of used to the coronavirus. I believe that the new mandate that they have out there is worth looking into. This is going to be my my confession. I'm not completely done with the National Emphasis Program. I'm still reading it over, but I've got enough going here that I think I could get a good thought. Let's say that we get a good thought for this episode. All right, so truly, I'm going to, um, just review that aspect and give you any kind of tips and initial thoughts. Alright, well, without any further do, it's going to be just me. So I'm going to just get started. The way that I normally do is buy saying What's up? I'm just gonna say What's up? I've been thinking about just this topic and how to do it. And then I've been a little tied up with some training lately, so I didn't know if I was going to be able to finish it all before today, but I really wanted to get this in as best as I could. So this is how I'm going to do. And I'm going and direct you to the OSHA dot gov website. Of course, if you're driving, you're not into this because you can't do this until you get back to your your home or wherever you're going. Your office. I can't even do this at stoplights. You have to take care of this later. It's all right, OSHA dot gov. Uh, listen to it. Now that I'm not telling you, don't listen to it. So listen to it now so you can understand all the stuff that's going. And then when you really listen to it, you'll be at your computer and then you know exactly where to look. All right, when you get on the ocean, take care of websites you're going to scroll down. You don't really have to scroll. It's right on the front page says coronavirus resources. So the two new guidance is one, uh, has the actual label on it. New guidance. And that is coming from, uh, an executive summary of, um basically, it's a protection guidance for the spread of covid 19 in a workplace. Oh, she is now taking this thing, and it's going to give it some words to it. I'm gonna tell you, um, some definitions and terms start popping up in this guidance manual, and then from there it goes into the national Emphasis Program. So, uh, the executive summary from President Biden was the thing that kicked everything off. So truly, he said, um, when he came in office, says, OSHA, I need you to figure out first and foremost how have you been doing over the last year and a half with this pandemic? Um, I guess we're almost up to two years. Aren't we My No, no. Full year, full year, not two years. Good. My mind is like giving it longer than it is, right. So one year. So basically you're saying from the time of the pandemic, spring 20 what are we thinking of as far as OSHA's response and I want you to review that, and then of OSHA person, and Biden goes ahead and tells them that not only do they want you to review this, but if you deem it necessary for you to come out with an emergency temporary standard after we do all this review, then let's go ahead and do that. Put in an emergency temporary standard and I want this done by March. So that's, uh, March 15th, I believe. Is that date, uh, the time of this recording where on April 1st and this thing has not came out yet. So that in itself is one of those things that is, um, and new. But I couldn't understand OSHA's way about this one. So let's, uh, let's just kind of go through first. The original guidance, Okay, just to kind of give you a nice little understanding of what that one is first or giving you a nice executive summary, and then they're gonna start talking about things with distancing. So, um, that's truly distancing masks wearing ventilation, uh, good hygiene practices. That's the how you could comply with this guidance. Uh, that's usually everything and then also, you know, keeping people away that are affected. So that's that's in the guidance itself. The purpose is to say we're going to use this to prevent a five a one violation. So it is the general duty of OSHA to keep workers safe, and that's what they're using here. For a lot of the purpose behind this is it is the Section five paragraph ace, a paragraph 15 a one and the OSHA Act that says, You know better. That's my rule. That's my way of saying it. It's the, you know, better rule. So that is, there is no standard that exist. However, you're still putting your workers in a hazardous situation. You know better than that. Uh, let's have a general duty that says the employer shall give the workers a place to work that is free of hazards that are known are likely to be known, and, uh, that are going to cause some serious harm. So that is in a nutshell, what that general duty clause is. That's what they're using here for the Covid 19 guidance form. Not the emergency temporary standard, which I really believe it's coming. It's just a guidance form. So then they break out just a little section for what is covid 19. The next thing is, uh, workers need to know about covid 19 protection in the workplace with this section over here. What workers need to know about covid 19 protection and workplace. It really breaks down, uh, some of the administrative controls that you would see some of the P p e and then with with anything for ventilation, that would be an engineering control. Uh, they break it down a little bit here. Uh, so they even asked, uh, they add in here about face coverings and how the study shows that that will reduce the risk. The thing that they do say about here is basically they're having face coverings and the ability of separating people for 6 ft. They mentioned something really about the roles of the next thing would be the roles of the employer. And in that section, they didn't mention something and it was related to, and I'm looking through the document right now just to make sure, but it is related to requiring that your customers will come in wearing a face mask. So Oh, here it is. Uh, it's important to wear our face covering and remain physically distance from co workers and customers, even if they have been vaccinated, because it is not known at this time how vaccinations actually transmit. Um and let's see, there was another one about face covering, but generally it was just saying, just to require that the workers there is to say, not the workers, requiring that people coming in the patrons or your face covering. So I thought that was actually unique in oceans wording because if you do know that OSHA has no jurisdiction over the employer and the customer side. But they're saying that since this is a unique hazard being airborne, that then the employer employee relationship is going to be somehow affected by the customer, that makes it where ocean now has the jurisdiction. And the things that they're saying now is, uh, face covering. And they even go into not all face coverage of the same. And they break that down and having your face covering over your mouth and your nose, imagine that your mouth and your nose. Some people are wearing their face covering wrong and let's see, it's truly, uh, how it's broken down in that section to even tell you how to sneeze too. So let's get your sneezing into that elbow. Uh, the other thing, the meat of the rest of this is going to be for found in the role of the employer and the workers in response to covid 19. So they give a numbered system of what you're supposed to do with coordination. Uh, you want to make sure that if there's anyone exposed that you're gonna do contact tracing and you're going to do all the measures that you need to actually either eliminate the hazard through some sort of, um, engineering controls such as the U V C lighting in the air duct. You know, they mentioned that that's that's the thought behind that section over there. And that goes pretty a pretty long way, including isolated workers. And I'm looking at this list. It looks like it's right around 16 points on this list to look for. So, generally speaking, what you would do is print this part out. It's really try reading. Yes, I understand so, but as a consultant, you want to print the stuff out, you want to highlight things. Underlying things get a good understanding. If it's a reference from, uh, let's say it tells you to go to section 11 C of the OSHA Act. All right, so I'm gonna go over to the act and cross reference that So this is gonna be a long time for you to really understand this. So that's why I'm telling you guys, I'm only a part way in, and I think I've got enough for a podcast. But when I get done, I'm going to create several things out of this. Uh, so it can also be not only homework for you, but at the end. If you know how to do it right, you can either make a course out of this. You can, uh, create some while several block post. That's gonna be a lead magnet to bring people to your website. You know, just do a post on LinkedIn, have people start reading there and then go over to your website or read the whole thing. And then, at the end, safe or more, uh, information or whatever or the complete, uh, section. If you're going to do this in in parts, you can find this at my website as soon as you get them at the website, then you could do a pixel pixel is a code, and this code is coming from Facebook or Google or someone who's going to help you put an ad in front of this person and then after there are no website reading the post, this information that they need, it's information. That's good. It's coming from your resource research. Excuse me, then. That pixel coach stays with them. You can now deliver them personally, uh, through your Google alerts, Uh, analytics excuse me or from Facebook. And then, you know, you get your your your client or potential clients to see service that you could provide. So, uh, that's the reason to do that. So as the person coaching you through getting your business going, it does help you to get this stuff and start reading it. Uh, so going down a little bit further, you're going to see additional keys. Uh, that OSHA is going to add to this document as saying other things you should be thinking about and they're talking about isolation quarantines as so just different things there. Um, we do have This is where we have the mentioned. I keep talking about increased physical distance or should say physical space. So they're saying over here in this section that they're want to to recommend by adjusting business practices to reduce close contact with customers, for example, moving to electronic payment terminals, um, drive thru service, online shopping and then curbside pick up. So that's one of the things that they're encouraging. Um, do stacking in the evening or off shift to reduce contact with customers. That's a good one. All right. And, um, that's a couple of things that they mentioned there. So not bad. Uh, and truly Hey, if you're going to create, another thing you can do is use this document and try to create a program for your client, you know, There you go. She's got written out right there for you. All right. So let's, uh So you guys got my initial thoughts on this, So I'm gonna give you again my initial thoughts on the National Emphasis Program. So you want to get back on the ocean home page, you're going to go to National Emphasis program right under where it says coronavirus resources. And then that document you really want to print I know it's gonna be a long one. Uh, There's been longer ones out there. Uh, but this national Emphasis program is now codifying different things in giving terms that you could now have a legal defense on. So therefore, understanding this document is very, very important. The other thing that this is going to really help you with is you're going to, um, want to use this for your own defenses. So whenever you have a client that may be coming up with, uh, an OSHA issue, then hey, go back to this. And now you know exactly how to protect their client, right? That's the way to do it. So the first thing that I noticed out of this national emphasis program and again this is going to just be my initial thoughts. I can not going to get too deeply in because right now I do not have, uh, completely. I have not read everything. So, like, I can't give you the full breakdown, and then that would be a very important podcast. I don't want to do that to you. So what I'm gonna do is I'm going to finish up my part of reading it and getting it getting myself set. And then once I do that. What I'll end up doing for you guys is putting it in a package such as, um, I might do it in a live stream or something. So much of that where you could do a Q and A session something. So that's, uh, that's what it's going to end up coming out. So that means you need to subscribe to this channel. Or I guess it's going to be my podcast, So subscribe to it so you can be notified. All right, so the federal program change is one of the things that they first highlighted for, and it looks like, uh oh, she is going to allow federal and state plans to have different things. Uh oh. She's going to ask the state plane. Are you gonna follow what we're gonna do? We're going to create your own, and they're going to allow the States to do that, so that's going to be pretty interesting. And they're going to have 6, 60 days to adapt any of the provisions that they're going to use on from the federal plane. Uh, most of this should be kicked in right now because I'm in April 1st, right now doing this recording so pretty. I'm pretty sure that this dates almost May is some of them. The 60 day one is going to be made 12. So we're close. Uh, this document has an expiration date. Says this direction is effective for no more than 12 months from the effective date unless cancelled or extended by superseding directive. So it actually has a close date on it, so that's good to know as well. They gave a description of close contact, and this one is a long description. But this is truly the thing that they're going to start using, and they're going to use this word often. Uh, so close contact is now defined as, uh, workers. Occupational exposure to SARS covid to during the pandemic main vary from community community, depending on local conditions or outbreaks. Exposures may be dependent on a variety of factors, including Now, this is going to be that definition physical environment of the workplace, the type of activity, the health status of the worker and the ability of the worker to wear face coverings and abide by current CDC guides and the need for close contact. And they say, within 6 ft for a total of 15 minutes or over a 24 hour period of time. So basically, the close contact is if you have any of those, um, warning signs or considerations that were given, and now you're going to be close to somebody within 6 ft for 15 minutes or close to them within 6 ft over 20 more than a 24 hour period. Now, this is going to be considered, and that means 24 hour period means like you're going home. Uh, you work eight hours, go home, and now you're off for 16, and then you come back, so that's going to be pretty much what it is. Or if you do a double shift or you work 12 hours, that's also going to take some of that time element ID. So this is going to be a poor thing 6 ft for a total of 15 minutes. Or if you're next to a person more over a 24 hour period, then now you're going to be considered close contact. So that's going to be the term you should remember out of this thing. It's good. They're also going to be targeting uh, inspections and they're going to be two categories of people that are going to be inspected. That's one of the first things I pulled out of this. They're going to have a master list coming out from, uh, let's see, Appendix A and B. It's going to have to master list One is coming from N A. I. C s codes with the North American industry classification system codes. Uh, those codes are pretty much people who are being targeted for more enforcement because their data is looking like they're trending up with injuries and illnesses. So those are the people that are going to be on that code, and that's how you're going to find out who you need to go out and address and see if you can start making a plan and help people get involved. If this is your specialty, or if this is some area that you believe you can help. So this is going to give you a guidance as to who may actually need a webinar or something similar to that just running off this list. So truly offense, seeing a few things that I'm I'm really looking at, and I believe that once I get a hold of those two master list, which is also in here, that's going to help you with understanding who to, um, who to talk to as far as getting services, but yeah, they're pretty pretty, uh, detailed. So I am now just starting, and I'm really just getting into it. And I'm not going to go any more into this one for for that reason, because I'm only presenting it to you as get on this. I mentioned it as my last tip of the week from that episode, and and the more I'm reading this is telling me it's going to be big. And I am also thinking emergency temporary standard is on the way. Even though OSHA gave this national emphasis program out, I believe that once they fine tune with that, uh, emergency standard would be they're going to use this document, and this is going to be the document that will be the playbook. There is basically well boiled into the compliance officer playbook. They use this for definitions to use this of terminology. They go back to the field operation manual and then they'll be able to pick out where you need to be as far as site patient and dollar figures, but it's going to start from this document. So you got to get a hold of this. So that is what I am going to be asking guys to do. Just truly, yeah, it's for your career. It's gonna make everything more interesting once you understand what ocean is going for, because now at this point, you're going to have to take care of your clients and make sure that they are protected. There's going to be more enforcement now, especially in a Democratic administration. That's the way it has been for a very long time, So be ready for it. Alright, you can do this. Seven. Go get him. This episode has been powered by safety FM.