“If the employees receive job instructions in a language other than English, then training and information … will also need to be conducted in a foreign language.”
In a 1999 letter of interpretation OSHA states “instruction … must be tailored to the employees’ language and education …”
(From a ReliablePlant.com article) There is no single OSHArule for training – employee trainingis a requirement in several different OSHA standards. In a recent speech, Secretary of Labor Hilda Solis announced a number of new worker training initiatives that will be implemented by OSHA.
According to Solis, OSHA currently requires that training provisions under its standards be provided in a language or a form that the workers can understand. The agency further requires that its compliance officers verify that workers have received the training required by OSHA standards.
However, effective April 28th, OSHA compliance officers will check not only that the training has been provided, but that it was provided in a format that the workers being trained can understand.
This new effort stems from an incident in which a worker was crushed to death in a machine she was cleaning. She had not been trained on how to clean the machinery safely and had not been given the manual to read because the employer stated that the employee could not speak or read English.
“This defies logic and is reprehensible!” stated Solis.