General employer responsibilities
You have the responsibility to provide a safe and healthy workplace.
You must provide a workplace free of known health and safety hazards and comply with certain safety standards, rules, and regulations, which may vary depending on your industry and nature of operations. Your employees have the right to refuse dangerous work, provided certain conditions are met.
Employers must also:
- Prominently display the free, official Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) Job Safety and Health – It’s the Law poster that describes rights and responsibilities under the law.
- Inform workers about chemical hazards through training, labels, alarms, color-coded systems, chemical information sheets, and other methods.
- Provide safety training to workers in a language and vocabulary they can understand.
- Keep accurate records of work-related injuries and illnesses.
- Perform tests in the workplace, such as air sampling, required by some OSHA standards.
- Provide required personal protective equipment at no cost to workers.
- Provide hearing exams or other medical tests required by OSHA standards.
- Post OSHA citations and injury and illness data where workers can see them.
- Notify OSHA within eight hours of a workplace fatality or within 24 hours of any work-related inpatient hospitalization, amputation, or loss of an eye (1-800-321-OSHA ).
- Not retaliate against workers for exercising their rights under the law, including their right to report a work-related injury or illness.
Questions? We’re here to help.
We are committed to helping you understand your responsibilities as an employer. Many questions about your safety and health responsibilities may be answered by using the following elaws (Employment Laws Assistance for Workers and Small Businesses) Advisors:
For additional assistance, please contact:
- OSHA at 1-800-321-OSHA (6742)
- Your area OSHA office
OSHA's area offices provide advice, education, and assistance to businesses and organizations who request help with occupational safety and health issues. In addition, OSHA's On-Site Consultation Program offers free and confidential safety and occupational health advice. No citations or penalties are issued; the employer's only obligation is to correct identified hazards.
Please note that the mining industry has its own set of safety and health standards, rules, and regulations, which are overseen by the Mine Safety and Health Administration (MSHA). Mining industry employers should contact MSHA at 202-693-9400 or AskMSHA@dol.gov.Learn about OSHA