Wednesday, May 10, 2006

Hearing Stirs Heated Debate Over Non-Consensus Standards

Still struggling for safety standards ...

"A recent public hearing in Washington pitted supporters of non-consensus standards versus those who argue that incorporating such standards into safety regulations flies in the face of open government.

The April 27 hearing, held by the House Workforce Protections Subcommittee, focused on concerns that regulations written without wide participation from the public – particularly those issued by the Cincinnati-based American Conference of Governmental Industrial Hygienists – circumvent Constitutional checks and balances. Supporters of non-consensus standards counter that such standards are needed because OSHA has dropped the ball when it comes to promulgating new workplace safety regulations.

Rep. Norwood 'Declares War'

Four years ago, the subcommittee, chaired by Rep. Charlie Norwood, R-Ga., held a similar hearing about an alleged attempt by the Department of Labor to incorporate standards set by outside standards-setting organizations into the hazard communication rule.

According to a member of a panel at the April 27 hearing, that practice continues."   continued ...   (Via Occupational Hazards)

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