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Addressing a workplace safety claim

If your employee claims that there is a workplace safety violation, it’s important to address it. Employers are generally required to meet safety and health regulations and provide employees with a healthy work environment.

Workplace safety violations

Violations can include not providing employees with appropriate protective equipment, like safety glasses or respiratory protection, failure to protect employees from dangerous equipment and not providing safety training to employees, including how to respond in an emergency.

Employers must also remove hazards in the workspace, like cleaning slippery floors, replacing faulty wiring and ensuring obstacles are removed, like boxes or supplies.

The employer should also conduct regular safety checks.

In most workplaces, employers must post safety notices and warnings where employees can see them clearly. If those are not present, the employee may state that there is a violation. In addition, while it may seem minor, employers must adequately respond to complaints about ergonomic issues. These can include desk or chair adjustments to prevent repetitive stress injuries.

Employer response

If an employee raises a workplace safety concern, it is important to acknowledge that you understand their concern and will investigate it. You can ask the employee to provide details and documentation about the violation.

If you determine that there is a violation, you should take immediate action to fix the safety issue. You may also need to update policies and procedures to prevent similar incidents.

Although it is time consuming and sometimes expensive to correct the issues, you should continue to support a work environment where employees know they can report concerns without fear of retaliation.