For two years now, our friends at OSHA have been warning employers about the advent of the new Globally Harmonized System (GHS) which aligns the US Hazard Communication Act with what is being done in most of the rest of the world. Basically, the GHS system enhances the chemical labeling and information sharing portions of the Hazard Communication Act.
Why OSHA Cares about US Employers Learning the Globally Harmonized System
OSHA has mandated that by December 1, 2013, all US employers must train their employees on the GHS chemical labeling and Safety Data Sheets (SDS) – which will replace the old Material Safety Data Sheets (MSDS) currently used under the Hazard Communication Standard.
Even though the GHS does not go totally into effect until 2015, employers who purchase chemicals from vendors overseas will begin to see the new GHS labels and SDS sheets now. OSHA’s thinking is that it will be better for employees to know about the new labels and SDS sheets BEFORE they become the law of the land. By the way, employers who fail to complete (and document) GHS training by December 1, 2013 are subject to an OSHA citation.
PEO to the Rescue
The Safety Team at Employers Resource has been working with our clients since May of this year on the GHS training. We supplied all our clients with the materials needed to complete the training and avoid a possible citation. As a professional employer organization, we can help you meet the GHS trianing deadline too.