Occupational Safety & Health Act of 1970

History & evolution of law & its effects on workplace safety. Legislative struggle, labor-business conflict, implementation, enforcement, inspections, weaknesses, reform, more. Outline.

The OSH (Occupational Safety and Health) Act of 1970 empowered the Secretary of Labor and OSHA (Occupation Health and Safety Administration), the federal agency created to administer the act, to establish and enforce standards guaranteeing the health and safety of all covered workers. The act covers every employer whose business affects interstate commerce. Exempted in the 1970 act were federal, state, and local government agencies. Also exempted are self-employed persons, family owned and operated farms, religious groups that do not employ workers for secular purposes, and working conditions regulated by other federal agencies under other federal statutes. The fact that municipal employees are not covered by Federal OSHA is an oversight that should be corrected.

The OSH Act has undergone significant changes since its..