Article 22 -- Health and Job Safety 2017-19 contract

Section 1. General. It shall be the policy of the Employer to provide for the health and safety of its employees by providing safe and healthful working conditions, safe work areas, and safe and healthful work methods. In the application of this policy, the prevention of accidents, the creation and maintenance of clean, sanitary and healthful restrooms and eating facilities shall be the continuing commitment of the Employer. The employees shall have the responsibility to use all provided safety equipment and procedures in their daily work and shall cooperate in all safety and accident prevention programs. Nothing in this Article shall be interpreted as restricting any employees’ right to file a complaint with OSHA.

Section 2. Safety Equipment. The Appointing Authority agrees to provide and maintain, without cost, such safety equipment and protective clothing as is required by the Appointing Authority, by OSHA, or by the Federal Mine Safety and Health Administration. Employees shall bring all unsafe equipment or unsafe conditions to the attention of the employee's immediate supervisor, and may also notify the Safety Officer. In addition, employees may bring safety concerns to the Appointing Authority, the local safety committee, or the Department of Administration’s Safety and Industrial Hygiene Unit. In the event that an employee alleges that an imminent danger exists in working conditions or equipment which exceeds the risks normally associated with the employee's position, the employee shall notify his/her supervisor and may also notify the Safety Officer of such condition. See Minn. Stat. 182, regarding this matter.

Any pregnant employee assigned to operate a VDT/CRT may request reassignment to alternate work within her Department. The Appointing Authority will attempt to accommodate such a request. In the event that such reassignment is not practicable, the employee shall have the right to request an unpaid leave of absence pursuant to Article 14, Section 3G.

Section 3. Accident Reports. All employees who are injured during the course of their employment shall file an accident report, no matter how slight the injury, in accordance with Minn. Stat. 176 on forms furnished by the Appointing Authority. A summary of the accident report shall be furnished to the Safety Committee or the Appointing Authority's Safety Officer. All such injuries shall be reported to the employee's immediate supervisor, and any necessary medical attention shall be arranged. The Appointing Authority shall provide assistance to employees in filling out all necessary Workers' Compensation forms, when requested.

Any medical examinations required by the Appointing Authority pursuant to this Article shall be at no cost to the employee, and the Appointing Authority shall receive a copy of the medical report. Upon request, the employee shall receive a copy of the medical report.

Section 4. Local Safety Committee. Each Appointing Authority shall establish at least one (1) Safety Committee. The Safety Committee shall be comprised of one (1) representative designated by the Association representatives from other bargaining units; and the Appointing Authority may appoint a number of management representatives equal to the total number of bargaining unit representatives. The Appointing Authority's designated Occupational Health and Safety Officer shall act as the Chairperson. The Safety Committee shall meet quarterly and be scheduled by the Chairperson. Additional meetings may be called by the Safety Officer or by a majority of the Committee as the need may arise. All Safety Committee meetings shall be held during normal day shift working hours on the Appointing Authority's premises and without loss of pay.

The function of the Safety Committee will be to review reports of property damage, personal injury accidents and alleged hazardous working conditions, so as to provide support for a strong safety program and to review and recommend safety policies to the Appointing Authority. Employees shall bring all unsafe equipment or job conditions to the attention of the immediate supervisor and/or the Safety Officer. Should the unsafe condition not be corrected within a reasonable time, the employee may bring the equipment or job practice to the attention of the Safety Committee.

Section 5. Immunizations. Employees of the Departments of Health, Agriculture, Natural Resources, the BCA and the PCA who face a serious health risk because their work repeatedly exposes them to bacterial or viral hazards (such as, but not limited to, hepatitis or rabies) shall be given the opportunity to be provided with immunizations, if available, by the Appointing Authority. However, the Appointing Authority shall not be required to provide immunizations to prevent the contraction of common illnesses.

Section 6. Health Surveys. The Departments of Health, Agriculture, Natural Resources, the BCA and PCA shall conduct an annual health survey for the purpose of identifying the incidence of known occupational hazards for those employees who, by the nature of their jobs, face serious health dangers through continued exposure to radiation and toxic or hazardous chemicals.

Section 7. Other Agencies. Upon mutual written agreement between the Appointing Authority and the Association, the provisions of Sections 5 and 6 may be extended to employees in other agencies.