Employee rights following workplace injury
Employers are responsible for ensuring a safe work environment for employees. Nevertheless, workplace injuries are inevitable in every industry, whether the company is located here in Tennessee or elsewhere in the country. These workplace injuries are detrimental to employees, and they can contribute to decreased productivity for the employer.
There are many steps that can be taken by employers to help decrease workplace injuries. Ergonomics is the science of fitting a particular person to an appropriate job. Implementing ergonomics can help decrease the number of injuries suffered in every type of work environment. To implement ergonomic processes effectively, it is crucial that management be committed to success, that employees be properly trained and that employees be encouraged to participate in the process. Steps should be taken to identify problems before they lead to injuries, and early reporting of symptoms should be encouraged. Employers should minimize risks, and they should periodically evaluate their progress in implementing ergonomic processes.
Even with a strong commitment to ergonomics, workplace injuries may still occur. It is always the responsibility of employers to ensure that employees are provided a safe work environment free from known hazards. OSHA is the national organization tasked with enforcing these legal obligations and protecting employees from unsafe working conditions. Employers are strictly prohibited from retaliating against employees who report an OSHA violation.
For those who are injured in workplace accidents, or the requirements of their job have caused injury or illness, protecting their rights can be a difficult and intimidating task. Even with OSHA’s resources, it may be difficult for injured workers to ensure they are receiving the full protection of the law. Attorneys focusing in workplace injuries can help guide those injured on the job through this process.
U.S. Department of Labor, “Prevention of Musculoskeletal Disorders in the Workplace”, October 24, 2014