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What are a construction worker's rights in the workplace?


The Occupational Health and Safety Administration is a federal agency entrusted with the responsibility of implementing programs targeted to promote safety and good health in the workplace and in the process, reduce workplace hazards that can often cause injuries or illnesses. Pennsylvania workers may be familiar with OHSA but many are not fully aware of their rights under the Occupational Health and Safety Act of 1970.

Considering that construction work is an inherently dangerous job, it is important that a Pennsylvania construction worker be aware of his or her workplace rights. According to OSHA, every employee is granted a set of rights and, at the same time, he or she is expected to carry out some fundamental responsibilities in order to maintain a safe workplace.

First and foremost, every worker on a construction site has the right to know the worksite safety standards the employer is responsible for maintaining. A construction worker also has the right to access records regarding exposure to different substances found on site. In cases where a worker feels that an employer is violating OSHA mandates, he or she can request an OSHA inspection accompanied by a company representative.

In the event of an inspection, a worker has the right to a copy of the test results after OSHA's assessment of site safety hazards. Another important right is worker anonymity when filing a complaint with OSHA about workplace safety violations. The worker can also expect to be protected from any sort of retaliatory action by his or her employer for reporting a violation to OSHA.

Construction accidents are a much-discussed subject and since many construction jobs are in fact accompanied by a significant amount of risk, it is only fair that OSHA provides this set of rights to workers. However, it remains a worker's responsibility to exercise his or her rights while working to ensure that Pennsylvania construction sites are safer places for construction workers.

Source: FindLaw.com, "OSHA and Construction Workers' Right to a Safe Workplace," Accessed on Aug. 21, 2014

Source: FindLaw.com, "OSHA and Construction Workers' Right to a Safe Workplace," Accessed on Aug. 21, 2014

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