Employers are responsible for providing a safe andhealthy workplace for their employees. OSHA’s roleis to promote the safety and health ofAmerica’sworking men and women by setting and enforcingstandards; providing training, outreach and educa-tion; establishing partnerships; and encouragingcontinual improvement in workplace safety andhealth.
About this Handbook
This handbook is provided to owners, propri-etors and managers of small businesses by theOccupational Safety and Health Administration(OSHA), an agency of the U.S. Department ofLabor. For additional copies of this publication,write to the U.S. Government Printing Office,(GPO), Superintendent of Documents, Mail StopSDE, 732 N. Capitol Street, NW, Washington, DC20401, or call the OSHA Publications Office at (202)693-1888, or fax (202) 693-2498 for ordering infor-mation. Please note that the entire text of theSmall Business Handbook is available on OSHA’swebsite at http://www.osha.gov/Publications/ osha2209.pdf.The handbook should help small business em-ployers meet the legal requirements imposed bythe
Occupational Safety and Health Act of 1970
(theAct), and achieve an in-compliance status before anOSHA inspection. An excellent resource to accom-pany this information is OSHA’s Safety and HealthProgram Management Guidelines, (54
3904-3916, January 26, 1989), also avail-able on OSHA’s website.This handbook is not a legal interpretation of theprovisions of the Act and does not place any addi-tional requirements on employers or employees.Employers cannot be cited under the General DutyClause in Section 5(a)(1) of the Act for failure to fol-low recommendations in this handbook.The materials in this handbook are based uponFederal OSHA standards and other requirements ineffect at the time of publication and upon generallyaccepted principles and activities within the jobsafety and health field. They should be useful tosmall business owners or managers and can beadapted easily to individual establishments.It is important to point out that 24 states, PuertoRico and the Virgin Islands operate their ownOSHA-approved safety and health programs underSection 18 of the Act. While the programs in theseState Plan States may differ in some respects fromFederal OSHA, this handbook can be used byemployers in any state because the standardsimposed by State Plan States must be at least aseffective as Federal OSHA standards. A list ofstates that operate their own safety and health pro-grams can be found on OSHA’s website atwww.osha.gov.Material in this publication is in the publicdomain and may be reproduced, fully or partially,without permission. Source credit is requested butnot required.This information will be made available to sen-sory impaired individuals upon request by voicephone (202) 693-1999 or teletypewriter (TTY) (877)889-5627.
The small business employer seekinginformation on procurement or contracting with theDepartment of Labor or OSHA should contact theDepartment of Labor’s Office of Small BusinessPrograms, 200 Constitution Avenue, NW, Room C-2318, Washington, DC 20210.