“During an OSHA inspection, one or more of your employees is likely to be interviewed by a Compliance Safety and Health Officer (CSHO). Although employees have the right to refuse any interview request, this is likely to represent only a fleeting avoidance of the interview process since OSHA is authorized to issue subpoenas to compel testimony,” writes Michael Rubin, Chair of Goldberg Segalla’s OSHA and Worksite Safety Practice Group.
In his article for Modern Contractor Solutions, Mike explains best practices for preparing employees for an OSHA interview, and the different rules regarding supervisory vs. non-supervisory employees.
In reference to pre-interview best practices, Mike says, “It is reasonable and good practice to prepare employees by showing them any relevant and/or helpful documents to refresh their memory. For example, provided the documents exist, consider showing your health and safety plan, worksite rules, pre-task planning documents, or any other records that may be relevant to expected interview subjects.”
He continues on to analyze the merits of deeming an employee a supervisor compared to the protections offered companies when an interviewed employee is considered “non-supervisory.” Mike concludes by stating, “Both supervisory and non-supervisory employees should be prepared in advance of sitting down with OSHA to ensure they have a clear understanding of their rights, the process, and the implications.”
“OSHA Interviews: Understanding and Exercising Your Rights,” Modern Contractor Solutions, April 2017