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Grassroots Action Urged On Ergonomics Issue

February 26, 2001

Congress expected to soon vote on OSHA’s final repetitive-stress injury standard

The National Restaurant Association is urging restaurateurs to contact their members of Congress and ask them to support and vote for a Joint Resolution of Disapproval (JRD), which would allow Congress to reject the Occupational Safety and Health Administration’s (OSHA) recently issued ergonomics standard. The stan-dard became effective Jan. 16, but the date by which businesses must comply with it is Oct. 16. A vote on the issue is expected soon.

The Association strongly opposes the repetitive-stress injury standard, which would impact all of the nation’s 844,000 restaurant locations, and is vigorously fighting against it. Currently, the Association is pursuing both legislative and legal strategies to halt its implemen-tation. The Association is part of a coali-tion of organizations challenging the rule in a lawsuit.

On the legislative front, the Association is urging Congress to approve the JRD. The Congressional Review Act (5 U.S.C. 801-808) allows Congress to reject a regulation if a majority of both the House and Senate pass separate JRDs that state the rule has “no force or effect.” Unless the president vetoes the JRD, the rule becomes null and void. OSHA may then issue another regulation, but not one that is “substantially the same form” of the original.

While the Association continues to fight the OSHA regulation, it is advising its members of the mandates contained in the rule. A detailed Q&A on comply-ing with the OSHA standard may be found on the Association’s Web site at www.restaurant.org/government.

Source: NRA Washington Weekly

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