Occupational Safety Health Act


The Occupational Safety and Health Act (OSHA) is the federal law which governs occupational health and safety in the private sector and federal government. It was enacted by Congress in 1970, and was signed by President Richard Nixon on December 29, 1970. Its main goal is to ensure that employers provide employees with an environment free from recognized hazards, such as exposure to toxic chemicals, excessive noise levels, mechanical dangers, heat or cold stress, or unsanitary conditions.


The Occupational Safety and Health Act, and a number of other laws protect workers against retaliation for complaining to their employers, unions, the Occupational Safety and Health Administration, or other government agencies about unsafe or unhealthful conditions in the workplace, environmental problems, certain public safety hazards, and certain violations of federal provisions concerning securities fraud, as well as for engaging in other related protected activities. Whistleblowers may not be transferred, denied a raise, have their hours reduced, be fired, or punished in any other way because they have exercised any right afforded to them under one of the laws that protect Whistleblowers.


Under the Occupational Safety and Health Act (OSHA), employees may file complaints if they believe that they have experienced discrimination or retaliation for exercising any right afforded by the OSHA such as complaining to the employer union, OSHA, or any other government agency about workplace safety or health hazards; or for participating in OSHA inspection conferences, hearings, or other OSHA-related activities.