NIOSH Best Practices to Help Host Employers Protect Temporary Workers | Workplace Safety and Environmental Law Alert Blog

NIOSH Best Practices to Help Host Employers Protect Temporary Workers

By Seyfarth Shaw LLP on December 16, 2022

By Benjamin D. Briggs, Adam R. Young, A. Scott Hecker, Patrick D. Joyce, and Craig B. Simonsen

Seyfarth Synopsis: The National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH) has released a new set of best practices to assist host employers in better protecting the safety and health of temporary workers.

Since 2013, Federal OSHA has maintained  a Temporary Worker Initiative, devoting  inspection resources towards temporary workers and staffing agencies. OSHA regularly cites multiple companies—including host employers—under this Multi-Employer Worksite Doctrine for alleged hazards faced by temporary employers.

Now NIOSH, a federal agency which lacks an enforcement arm, has put forward temporary worker guidance. According to NIOSH, its guidance addresses temporary workers who are paid by a staffing company and assigned to a host employer, including for both short- and long-term assignments. NIOSH explains that “the risk of experiencing a work-related injury may be higher for temporary workers than for non-temporary workers.”

NIOSH—in partnership the American Society of Safety Professionals (ASSP), the American Staffing Association (ASA), and the Safety and Health Assessment and Research for Prevention (SHARP) program within the Washington State Department of Labor and Industries—developed a set of best practices to help host employers optimize their efforts to protect the safety and health of temporary workers.

The best practices were organized into three sections:

Evaluation and contracting;
Training for temporary workers and their worksite supervisors; and
Injury and illness reporting, response, and recordkeeping.
NIOSH has also prepared a series of checklists for each of the three sections that can be printed or completed electronically. In addition, there is also a slide deck for staffing companies to use to educate their host employer clients about the best practices contained in the document.  These materials are educational and non-mandatory.
— Read on


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