Safety Rights and Responsibilities

Your Rights

  • You have the right to a safe and healthful workplace. The U.S. Occupational Safety and Health Act (OSHA) of 1970 requires employers to provide a workplace that is free from recognized hazards and comply with federal occupational safety and health codes specific to each industry.

  • You have the right to request information from your employer about safety standards, worker injuries and illnesses, job hazards, and workers' rights. You may request information on safety and health hazards in your workplace and you may see copies of appropriate rules and regulations governing your industry.

  • You have the right to get training from your employer. This may include training on chemicals you are exposed to and how to protect yourself from harm. You may get training from your employer on a variety of other health and safety hazards and standards that your employer must follow. These include lockout-tagout, bloodborne pathogens, confined spaces, construction hazards, etc.

  • You have the right to speak up if you notice a safety or health hazard at work. You have a right to file a complaint with Maryland Occupational Safety and Health (MOSH) if you believe that a safety violation or a serious workplace hazard exists in your workplace.

  • You have the right to request action from your employer to correct safety hazards or violations. You may ask your employer to correct hazards even if they are not violations of specific OSHA standards.

  • If you are injured on the job, you may have the right to receive disability benefits from your employer. You may also have the right to receive medical care to treat your work-related injury or illness. (Your injury must be found to be compensable in order for you to be eligible for these benefits. For more information, speak with your supervisor or your company's Human Resource representative.)

Your Responsibilities

  • You are responsible for following your employer's lawful safety and health rules. Employers have certain responsibilities under the OSHA Act. Among these, employers must establish or update safe operating procedures and make sure that all employees understand and follow them.

  • You are responsible for following safe work practices for your job as directed by your employer. This includes following the safety warnings on all posters, labels or signs posted by your employer.

  • You are responsible for wearing or using all safety equipment and clothing while working. This may include wearing hard hats, safety goggles or glasses, special gloves, special shoes, safety vests, harnesses, ear protection, and other personal protective equipment designed to protect you from any potential job hazards.

  • You are responsible for reporting hazardous conditions to your supervisor. You must be aware of your work environment at all times. Your supervisor must in turn report any hazardous conditions to management, and management must ultimately reduce or correct the hazards.

  • You are responsible for reporting any job-related injury or illness to your employer, and seeking treatment promptly.

  • You have a responsibility to exercise your rights responsibly. You must abide by the law at all times and conduct yourself so as not to commit or be a party to any fraudulent activity toward your employer or its workers' compensation insurer.

Note: This Chesapeake Employers' information is only a general summary of your workplace safety rights and responsibilities. Ultimately, safety and health remain your responsibility. For a comprehensive listing of your rights and responsibilities under U.S. law, consult the Occupational Safety and Health Act of 1970, P.L. 91-596. You may contact OSHA by calling 1-800-321-OSHA or going online to or

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