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Protections for temporary workers on the job

Temporary workers in Georgia require on-the-job protection from respiratory problems and noise issues. According to recent bulletins issued by the Occupational Safety and Health Administration, both host employers and staffing firms share the responsibility for ensuring that temp workers receive the necessary protection. OSHA's documents review potential sample scenarios that could affect temp workers.

In particular, OSHA noted that temp workers in construction, maritime work or general industry must receive appropriate respirators. Employers have a responsibility to detect and monitor the potential for workplace hazards and provide correct protective gear.

The host employer and staffing agency can divide the responsibility between themselves, but they cannot require the workers to provide their own respiratory protective devices. The OSHA documents noted that the host employer usually shouldered the responsibility for evaluating potential levels of exposure, determining and implementing engineering and work practice controls and maintaining a protection program when respirators are necessary.

In addition, another OSHA bulletin addressed noise risks in construction and general industry. It noted that host employers have a responsibility to determine the levels of noise to which workers are exposed, implement and enforce ongoing controls and provide protective equipment for workers' hearing. Staffing agencies are also required to understand noise exposure risks and controls, inform temp workers of the hazards they may face and make sure that the workers have appropriate hearing protection. Again, temp workers cannot be forced to pay for protective equipment.

Temporary workers, like permanent workers, can face a range of workplace hazards while on the job. Those who have been injured while at work can protect their rights and seek the compensation they deserve by consulting with a workers' compensation attorney.

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