WASHINGTON – Today, Education and the Workforce Committee Chairwoman Virginia Foxx (R-NC) sent a letter to Department of Labor Acting Secretary Julie Su raising concerns over the Department’s inability to justify its proposed “Walkaround Rule” with sound data. The rule would give unions and left-wing activists access to non-union worksites during inspections conducted by the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA). The Chairwoman’s concerns were spurred by OSHA’s acknowledgement that it does not track how many times a third-party representative accompanied inspectors on a worksite inspection.
In the letter, Foxx writes:“With this letter, I express additional concerns with the Department of Labor’s (DOL) rulemaking based on Assistant Secretary Douglas L. Parker’s responses to questions for the record (QFR). … The proposed Walkaround Rule puts politics first by promoting Big Labor’s interests, interferes in labor-management relations, increases costs, puts union bosses ahead of workers, and overturns longstanding regulations. … OSHA’s QFR responses make clear that it proceeded to undertake fundamental changes to its current walkaround regulation without any substantive data or an understanding of whether changes to its regulation are needed.”
The letter continues:“The proposed rule could create a basis for legal challenges. … By pushing a rule without an adequate foundation, OSHA is working against its mandate to ensure safe and healthy conditions for workers by creating an atmosphere of uncertainty and by weakening an already effective walkaround rule for political gain. As is all too common under the Biden administration, DOL is using its rulemaking power to benefit Big Labor.”
The Chairwoman concludes: “The Committee insists that OSHA use adequate factual bases for its regulatory proposals. … In its responses to Committee QFRs, OSHA has demonstrated that it lacks a quantitative understanding of the circumstances surrounding the rule. Because OSHA lacks such critical information, will you commit to abandoning this rulemaking?”
August 29, 2023: Chairwoman Foxx released a statement in response to OSHA’s Walkaround Rule.
September 27, 2023: OSHA Assistant Secretary Douglas L. Parker testified before the Subcommittee on Workforce Protections during a hearing titled “Examining the Policies and Priorities of the Occupational Safety and Health Administration.”
November 13, 2023: Chairwoman Foxx submitted a comment letter to Acting Secretary Su urging the Department to withdraw OSHA’s Walkaround Rule.