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Employees may have options over concerns for workplace safety

There are federal regulations to ensure that workers are provided with a safe working environment. While the majority of companies take measures to comply with those regulations, there are some employees who may face needless hazards on the job. Provided certain conditions exist, Missouri workers may have the right to refuse to work if they have serious concerns over workplace safety.

According to the guidelines provided by the Occupational Safety and Health Administration, workers are entitled to a workplace free from unnecessary dangers. If an employee fears that he or she faces a significant risk of a serious injury or death, OSHA states that workers may rightfully refuse to work until the conditions are corrected. However, before workers can take that step, they are first required to inform their employer of their concerns if possible. If the employer refuses to take corrective actions, then the employee may refuse to work provided that he or she is doing so for valid concerns.  

In addition, if any other reasonable person would agree that the conditions are hazardous and there is not enough time to contact officials from OSHA to report the conditions, then individuals may refuse to work. Once a worker has filed the report and contacted the employer regarding the situation, the agency recommends that workers remain on-site until the employer sends them away. If an employee suffers any repercussions from an employer for refusing to work for justifiable reasons, then he or she is urged to contact OSHA within one month of the incident.

Every worker is entitled to ensure that workplace safety is a priority. However, a serious work accident may occur in spite of the precautions that may be in place. Missouri workers who have suffered a serious work-related injury or illness may have a valid claim for workers' compensation benefits. An experienced attorney can provide expertise in filing a qualifying claim in an efficient manner.

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