For more information on meetings, agenda, minutes, draft regulations, and future meetings, please go to the following:
2) click on MIOSHA (on the left-hand sidebar link)
3) click on Standards & Regulations (on the left-hand sidebar link)
4) click on Ergononics Standard Advisory Committee Activity (middle of page)
December 1, 2004
Nothing significant happened at the last meeting on November 4, 2004. There is no meeting scheduled for December. The next meeting is January 26, 2005.
October 29, 2004
The regulatory spotlight is on Michigan to see if the MIOSHA standards process results in the second mandatory ergonomics regulation in the country. The Congressional Review Act removed the OSHA final rulemaking on ergonomics in April 2003, before the first compliance deadline. Late last year voters in Washington State struck down their ergonomics regulation a few months before the effective date. Currently, the only ergonomic standard being enforced in the country is in California.
In the fall of 2003, MIOSHA was directed by a Joint Steering Committee of the General Industry and Occupational Health Standards Commissions to create an Ergonomics Advisory Committee. The Advisory Committee has been meeting approximately monthly for the past year to develop language for a proposed ergonomics standard in Michigan.
The Ergonomics Advisory Committee is much larger than the typical standards advisory committee. Currently there are five Labor representatives, six Management representatives, two Public representatives and two Technical Advisors, and a Safety Standards Commissioner acting as liaison to both standards commissions. John Bavin, Industrial Hygienist with Consumers Energy is a member of the Advisory Committee.
Discussions during the first few meetings of the Ergonomics Advisory Committee included other options besides a mandatory standard, including outreach or voluntary ergonomics guidelines. In January of 2004 both of the Standards Commissions clarified the direction to the Advisory Committee, which is to develop a mandatory standard, not guidelines or outreach. For a proposed standard to continue through the process beyond the Advisory Committee, there must be a consensus among Committee members, not a majority vote of Committee members.
The standards promulgation process in Michigan involves 30 steps. Step #3 is the drafting of rules by an Advisory Committee, which is where the process has been for the last 12 months. This is not an overnight process. Assuming the Advisory Committee reaches consensus on proposed language for a standard, there are numerous legislative hurdles and formal reviews before a proposed standard goes to public hearing.
The draft language developed so far by the Advisory Committee is listed below. I urge you to review the draft as well as future revisions, which will be posted on the MIOSHA web site. [Go to www.michigan.gov/cis/ then click on "MIOSHA", then click on "Standards and Regulations".] Also posted are dates of future Advisory Committee meetings and minutes of those past. Advisory Committee meetings are open to the public. Anyone attending a meeting is welcome to express their views to the committee. Please get involved in the process by attending an Advisory Committee meeting and voicing your views, or email John Bavin with your comments or concerns.
John P Bavin
Corporate Industrial Hygienist
DRAFT ELEMENTS OF A MINIMAL PROCESS
Ergonomics Advisory Committee
September 22, 2004
1. All general industry employees shall be given ergonomic awareness training that covers:
a. What are ergonomic hazards, risk factors, and injuries.
b. The process for communicating that an ergonomic hazard has been recognized.
c. What to do when an ergonomic hazard is recognized and how to avoid an ergonomic injury.
2. Records to document training shall be kept.
1. An employer shall have ergonomic risk factor assessment mechanism and it shall be kept current.
Employer and Employee Involvement
1. Employers and employees should be involved in the overall ergonomic process.
2. There shall be no discrimination for reporting a hazard.
[tentative until researched]
1. There shall be a process to control or, where feasible, reduce ergonomic hazard.