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This entry was published on 2021-06-18
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SECTION 27-D
Workplace safety committees
Labor (LAB) CHAPTER 31, ARTICLE 2
* § 27-d. Workplace safety committees. 1. For the purposes of this
section, the following terms shall have the following meanings:

(a) "Employer" shall mean any person, entity, business, corporation,
partnership, limited liability company, or an association employing at
least ten employees. The term shall not include the state, any political
subdivision of the state, a public authority, or any other governmental
agency or instrumentality.

(b) "Employee" shall include all employees in the state, except for
employees of the state, any political subdivision of the state, a public
authority, or any other governmental agency or instrumentality.

2. Employers shall permit employees to establish and administer a
joint labor-management workplace safety committee, but not more than one
committee per worksite, provided however that an employer that already
has a workplace safety committee that is otherwise consistent with the
requirements of this section, shall be exempted from creating an
additional safety committee under this section. Each workplace safety
committee shall be composed of employee and employer designees, provided
at least two-thirds are non-supervisory employees. Employee members of
the committee shall be selected by, and from among, non-supervisory
employees. Committees shall be co-chaired by a representative of the
employer and non-supervisory employees. Where there is a collective
bargaining agreement in place, the collective bargaining representative
shall be responsible for the selection of employees to serve as members
of the committee. Committees representing geographically distinct
worksites may also be formed as necessary.

3. No employer shall interfere with the selection of employees who
shall serve on such committee or who serve as the workplace safety
designee or with such employees' performance of the duties authorized
under this section.

4. Each workplace safety committee and workplace safety designee shall
be authorized to perform the following tasks, including but not limited
to:

(a) Raise health and safety concerns, hazards, complaints and
violations to the employer to which the employer must respond.

(b) Review any policy put in place in the workplace required by any
provision of this chapter relating to occupational safety and health and
provide feedback to such policy in a manner consistent with any
provision of law.

(c) Review the adoption of any policy in the workplace in response to
any health or safety law, ordinance, rule, regulation, executive order,
or other related directive.

(d) Participate in any site visit by any governmental entity
responsible for enforcing safety and health standards unless otherwise
prohibited by law.

(e) Review any report filed by the employer related to the health and
safety of the workplace in a manner consistent with any provision of
law.

(f) Regularly schedule a meeting during work hours at least once a
quarter that shall last no longer than two hours.

5. Employers shall permit safety committee designees to attend a
training of no longer than four hours, without suffering a loss of pay,
on the function of worker safety committees, rights established under
this section, and an introduction to occupational safety and health.

6. Any employee who participates in the activities or establishment of
a workplace safety committee shall not be subject to retaliation for any
actions taken pursuant to their participation. Violations of this
subdivision shall be deemed to be a violation of paragraph (a) of
subdivision one of section two hundred fifteen of this chapter and the
civil penalties and remedies of paragraph (b) of subdivision one and
paragraphs (a) and (b) of subdivision two of section two hundred fifteen
of this chapter shall be applicable to this subdivision.

7. Nothing in this section shall be deemed to diminish the rights,
privileges, or remedies of any employee under any collective bargaining
agreement. The provisions of this section may be waived by a collective
bargaining agreement, provided that for such waiver to be valid, it
shall explicitly reference this section.

8. The commissioner shall adopt and amend rules and regulations to
effectuate the provisions and purposes of this section.

* NB Effective November 1, 2021