On 30 September 2009 the Occupational Safety and Health Administration in the United States said in a media statement:
A proposed rule to align the Occupational Safety and Health Administration’s Hazard Communication Standard (HCS) with provisions of the United Nations Globally Harmonized System of Classification and Labelling of Chemicals (GHS) will be published in the September 30 Federal Register.
Jordan Barab, acting Assistant Secretary of Labor for OSHA said
“The proposal to align the hazard communication standard with the GHS will improve the consistency and effectiveness of hazard communications and reduce chemical-related injuries, illnesses and fatalities…… Following the GHS approach will increase workplace safety, facilitate international trade in chemicals, and generate cost savings from production efficiencies for firms that manufacture and use hazardous chemicals.”
The closing date for comments is 18 December 2009.
Safe Work Australia stresses what the draft is not and the web page on the issue is very important to read.
Safe Work Australia says it
“…will be preparing guidance material for different audiences on the GHS and introducing two training courses (as basic and an expert one) to understand GHS classification.”
It should also be noted that the draft Classification Criteria is being revised in the context of the OHS harmonisation program of the Federal Government.