The Need for a Strong Safety Culture in the Workplace Essay

1008 Words5 Pages
The death of twenty-nine workers in an explosion at an underground mine site is a catastrophic example that demonstrates the critical need for a strong safety culture in the workplace. Ben Heineman, the author of the article “Valuing Safety is Good for Companies’ Bottom Line,” (2010) suggests that “culture consists of the shared principles and shared practices which influence how people in organizations feel, think, and behave.” Today, most industries view strong safety regulations as a crucial component to the workplace practices inside a business. Without a deep commitment by company leadership to create and enforce the importance of safety and health polices, a safety culture will not exist. Integrity and safety must never be…show more content…
In review of OSHA’s Small Business Handbook, Steve Thompson (2005) suggests that “developing strong safety cultures has the single greatest impact on injury reduction of any process.” Today, many view OSHA regulations and recommendations as the foundation for developing a safety culture. Employees across the board must be able to identify unsafe conditions and behaviors. Employees must also feel the confidence to intervene to correct them. Thompson (2005) makes the example that any employee should feel comfortable reminding another employee to wear safety glasses. If safety is viewed as an organizational value, this type of behavior would not be viewed as defiant or rude. Additionally, documented research has been instrumental in driving change in occupational health and safety practices and policies throughout industries across the world. The workplace has become progressively safer in recent years with job-related injuries and illnesses reaching an all-time low for the last nine consecutive years. According to Timothy Dennison, who wrote the article “Driving Toward “0”: Best Practices in Corporate Safety and Health,” (2003) companies like Baxter International and Alcoa are continuously striving for outstanding safety and health records by ensuring strict regulatory compliance and developing their own best practices to enhance their
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