ACTION REQUIRED: US Senate Only Action Alert Urging Senators to Oppose the Passage of H.J.Res.83

Worker health and safety are inextricably linked to accurate workplace injury and illness data. Better records benefit both employees and employers by allowing each to become more aware of hazards, recognize patterns, and take corrective actions. In short, accurate records help protect workers, while less-complete records have the potential to put them at greater risk. This data – and by extension, worker health and safety – are being threatened by H.J.Res.83. In a misguided attempt to reduce perceived regulatory burden, this fast-moving legislation would use the Congressional Review Act (CRA) to permanently overturn OSHA’s final rule which clarifies that an employer is obligated to establish and maintain accurate records of work-related injuries and illnesses throughout a five-year record retention timeframe.

The time to act is now. It is highly likely that the Senate will vote on H.J.Res.83 sometime Tuesday, March 14. As a result, AAOHN asks you to please send a letter to each of your US Senators urging them to vote against the passage of H.J.Res.83. A model letter is provided below; to increase the effectiveness of your messages, we ask that you personalize your letters.

Constituent-to-Policymaker Email Subject Line

Protect Worker Health & Safety by Voting Against H.J.Res.83!

Model Letter from Constituents to their Members of Congress

As a constituent and member of the American Association of Occupational Health Nurses (AAOHN), I strongly encourage you to vote against H.J.Res.83, which would use the Congressional Review Act (CRA) to permanently overturn OSHA’s final rule, which clarifies that an employer is obligated to establish and maintain accurate records of work-related injuries and illnesses throughout a five-year record retention timeframe.

As AAOHN members, my colleagues and I play critical roles in the maintaining the health of workers as well as serve as guardians of occupational health and safety.  We apply the principles of sound science to anticipate, identify, and solve health and safety problems, while communicating the integral business case for preservation of human capital to all levels of management across the entire organization. In pursuit of these goals, few things are more important to occupational health nurses than accurate records.

Better records benefit both employees and employers by allowing each to become more aware of hazards, recognize patterns, and take corrective actions. In short, accurate records help protect workers, and less-complete records place them at greater risk. This data – and by extension, worker health and safety – are being threatened by H.J.Res.83.

We should be discussing how to improve worker health and safety, rather than becoming distracted by a misguided attempt to reduce a perceived regulatory burden. Reducing the burden of regulations is a topic of great importance to our profession – however it should be done in an open forum where ideas can be exchanged – not in fast-moving legislation developed without sound discussion with the professionals who are responsible for ensuring and improving the health and safety of workers and workplaces. 

AAOHN and I stand ready to help you develop and advance policies that protect and improve worker health and safety. As a step in this direction, I urge you to oppose passage of H.J.Res.83, and instead encourage Congress to focus attention on advancing occupational and environmental health and safety.

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