1.14.5 Occupational Health and Safety Program

Manual Transmittal

May 10, 2017

Purpose

(1) This transmits revised Internal Revenue Manual (IRM) 1.14.5, Occupational Health and Safety Program.

Material Changes

(1) On October 1, 2014, Real Estate and Facilities Management (REFM) merged with Physical Security and Emergency Preparedness (PSEP) to create Facilities Management and Security Services (FMSS). This IRM has been updated to reflect current organization titles.

(2) As of January 1, 2017, the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) instituted a requirement that the IRM address relevant internal controls. This will inform employees about the importance of and context for internal controls by describing the program objectives and officials charged with program management and oversight. Internal controls are the program’s policies and procedures which ensure:

  1. Mission and program objectives are clearly delineated and key terms defined.

  2. Program goals are established and performance is measured to assess efficient and effective mission and objective accomplishment.

  3. Program and resources are protected against waste, fraud, abuse, mismanagement and misappropriation.

  4. Program operations are in conformance with applicable laws and regulations.

  5. Financial reporting is complete, current and accurate.

  6. Reliable information is obtained and used for decision making and quality assurance.

(3) This IRM provides the purpose, authorities, directives and responsibilities for the Occupational Health and Safety Program.

(4) The IRM title has been changed to the Occupational Health and Safety Program to align with the title in the Public Law 91-596, Occupational Health and Safety (OHS) Act and Executive Order 12196, Occupational Health and Safety Programs for Federal Employees.

Effect on Other Documents

This document supersedes IRM 1.14.5 dated May 10, 2012.

Audience

Servicewide

Effective Date

(05-10-2017)


Richard L. Rodriguez
Director
Facilities Management and Security Services
Agency-Wide Shared Services

Program Scope

  1. This section applies to all IRS facilities, employees and contractors.

  2. Purpose: This section provides specific occupational safety and health policy for implementing Internal Revenue Service (IRS) Environment, Health and Safety (EHS) Policy Statement 1-235. The objectives of the IRS occupational safety and health program are to:

    1. Promote a proactive safety and health culture that supports the IRS mission.

    2. Ensure that all employees and managers comply with federal, state, and local regulations, as well as, IRS safety and health rules and policies, and laws.

    3. Prevent injuries, illnesses, and accidents involving IRS employees, contractors or visitors to IRS facilities.

  3. Audience: All IRS employees and contractors.

  4. Policy Owner: Director, Facilities Management and Security Services (FMSS).

  5. Program Owner: FMSS EHS Chief.

  6. Primary Stakeholders: FMSS Territory Managers (TM), Safety Officers (SO), Real Estate and Building Delegation personnel at Headquarters (HQ) and in the field.

Background

  1. This section establishes the IRS policy for compliance with federal, state and local occupational health and safety regulations, EO, and Treasury Directives (TD).

    1. Environmental compliance is described in IRM 1.14.12, IRS Environmental Program.

    2. Occupant Emergency Planning is described in IRM 10.2.9, Occupant Emergency Planning.

Authority

  1. The IRS occupational health and safety program is based on the following laws, regulations, EO, TD, and IRS policy:

    1. Public Law 91-596, Occupational Health and Safety (OHS) Act

    2. EO 12196, Occupational Health and Safety Programs for Federal Employees

    3. 29 Code of Federal Regulations (CFR) 1904, Recording and Reporting Occupational Injuries and Illness

    4. 29 CFR 1910, Safety and Health Standards for General Industry

    5. 29 CFR 1926, Safety and Health Standards for Construction

    6. 29 CFR 1960, Basic Program Elements for Federal Employees Occupational Health and Safety Programs and Related Matters

    7. 41 CFR 50-204, Safety and health standards for Federal supply contracts

    8. 41 CFR 102-74, Facility Management

    9. 41 CFR 102-80, Safety and Environmental Management

    10. Treasury Directive 75-09

    11. Document 11500, IRS Guide to Penalty Determinations

    12. Article 27, Section 3, The National Agreement

Responsibilities

  1. The IRS Commissioner will ensure the provision of support and resources to achieve the IRS EHS Policy and to comply with federal, state and local environmental, safety, and health regulations.

  2. IRS Deputy Commissioners and other executive managers, commensurate with their authority, will:

    1. furnish employees a place of employment which is free from recognized hazards that are causing or are likely to cause death or serious physical harm.

    2. ensure compliance with the occupational health and safety regulations that are applicable to the IRS.

    3. ensure compliance with IRS occupational health and safety policies.

  3. The Director, FMSS is the Designated Safety and Health Official (DSHO). The DSHO represents the interest and support of the IRS Commissioner in the management and administration of the IRS occupational health and safety program. The DSHO:

    1. establishes and administers the IRS OHS policy and program requirements and carrying out the provisions of Section 19 of the OHS Act, EO 12196, and requirements of 29 CFR 1960.

    2. ensures adequate safety and health staff, resources, and funding to implement an effective occupational health and safety program at all operational levels.

    3. establishes procedures to ensure effective implementation of the agency policy and program.

    4. develops goals, objectives, and measures for improving IRS OHS program performance.

  4. The FMSS EHS staff:

    1. plans, implements, analyzes and evaluates the IRS OHS program.

    2. establishes policies, procedures and directives for the OHS program.

    3. provides technical assistance and guidance to field safety and health program owners, safety and health stakeholders, and business units.

    4. reports to the Department of the Treasury and other federal agencies, as required or as appropriate, on the performance of the IRS OHS program.

  5. The Senior Commissioner Representatives (SCR)/Site Coordinators (SC):

    1. advocate a proactive OHS program within their jurisdiction.

    2. oversee the Safety Advisory Committees (SAC) within their jurisdiction in accordance with the provisions of Article 27, Section 3, of The National Agreement with the National Treasury Employees Union (NTEU).

    3. solicit safety inspectors and ensure that the appropriate number of inspectors is in place at all offices within their jurisdiction.

    4. notify all managers within a specific building when a serious or imminent hazard is reported.

    5. nominate outstanding volunteer inspectors and/or SAC members for appropriate EHS awards or recognition for their contributions.

    6. authorize entry of an Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) compliance officer to an IRS facility or office and coordinate the inspection with the servicing Safety Officer.

  6. The FMSS TM:

    1. establishes and manages OHS programs which meet IRS policies and federal, state and local regulations, in their servicing geographical area.

    2. develops an annual program plan and budget that establishes safety and health objectives within their servicing geographical area.

    3. verifies that safety inspections are conducted in all areas and operations under their authority.

    4. provides resources and organizational support for correcting safety and health hazards.

    5. designates SO for all areas under their authority.

    6. promotes safety and health prevention programs and information.

    7. establishes local safety guidelines recommended by SO or other personnel.

    8. verifies that evaluations of safety and health programs in their servicing areas are conducted on annual basis.

    9. ensures IRS Standard Operating Procedures (SOP) relevant to their facility and building operations are followed.

  7. The SO:

    1. implements occupational health and safety programs which meet IRS policies and federal, state, and local regulations, within their servicing areas.

    2. develops annual EHS program plans that establish safety and health goals and objectives within their servicing areas.

    3. conducts annual safety inspections in all areas and operations within their servicing areas.

    4. conducts accident investigations for each reported accident and injury within their servicing areas and document findings in the Treasury supported online safety and health information system.

    5. recommends local safety guidelines for all areas under their authority.

    6. participates in annual evaluations of safety and health programs in their servicing areas.

    7. promotes safety and health prevention programs and information.

  8. IRS Managers:

    1. ensure operations under their purview are conducted in a manner that complies with OHS rules, policies, and procedures that are issued by the IRS.

    2. verify their employees receive required OHS training.

    3. support the SO in conducting investigations and gathering information on near misses, accidents, injuries, illnesses, and unsafe conditions.

    4. discipline their employees who violate safety rules are disciplined in accordance with the Document 11500, IRS Guide to Penalty Determinations.

    5. nominate outstanding employees for appropriate EHS awards or recognition for their contributions.

    6. ensure applicable IRS SOP are implemented and followed.

  9. IRS Employees:

    1. comply with safety and health rules, policies, and procedures that are issued by the IRS.

    2. report safety hazards, injuries, illnesses, and unsafe behaviors in a timely manner to their manager and to the Employee Resource Center (ERC).

    3. report occupational injuries, illnesses, accidents, and unsafe conditions on Form 9154,Report of Occupational Injury, Illness, Accident or Unsafe Condition, provide to the supervisor, and forward to the servicing SO.

    4. participate in required safety and health training.

  10. IRS Contracting Officer Representatives (COR):

    1. identify and report safety and health hazards and unsafe work practices created by or affecting a contractor.

    2. notify the Contracting Officer (CO) of serious hazards that a contractor will not or cannot correct.

Program Objectives and Review

  1. Program Goals: This section provides specific occupational health and safety policy for implementing IRS EHS Policy Statement 1-235. The objectives of the IRS occupational health and safety program are to:

    1. Promote a proactive safety and health culture that supports the IRS mission through regular communications.

    2. Ensure that all employees and managers comply with federal, state, and local regulations, as well as, IRS safety and health rules, policies, and laws through the Safety Inspection Program and the period use of third party Environment, Health and Safety Audits as mandated by TD 75-09.

    3. Prevent injuries, illnesses, and accidents involving IRS employees, contractors or visitors to IRS facilities through corrective and preventive actions taking as a result of the above mentioned inspections and audits.

  2. Program Effectiveness: The program is measured through the statistically significant reduction or increase in incidents, injuries and close calls.

Terms/Definitions/Acronyms

  1. Acronyms

    Acronym Definition
    CFR Code of Federal Regulations
    COR Contracting Officer Representative
    DSHO Designated Safety and Health Official
    EHS Environment, Health and Safety
    EO Executive Orders
    ERC Employee Resource Center
    FMSS Facilities Management and Security Services
    HQ Headquarters
    OHS Occupational Health and Safety
    OSHA Occupational Safety and Health Administration
    SAC Safety Advisory Committees
    SC Site Coordinators
    SCR Senior Commissioner’s Representative
    SO Safety Officers
    SOP Standard Operating Procedures
    TD Treasury Directives
    TM Territory Managers


Related Resources

  1. IRM 1.2.10.36, Policy Statement 1-235

  2. IRM 1.14.12, IRS Environmental Compliance Program

  3. IRM 10.2.9, Occupant Emergency Planning

Policy

  1. The EHS Policy Statement 1-235, published in IRM 1.2.10, Policy Statements for Organization, Finance and Management Activities, is applicable across all IRS activities and operations.

Employee Rights

  1. IRS employees have the right to:

    1. review copies of appropriate standards, rules, regulations, and requirements.

    2. request information on safety and health hazards in the workplace, appropriate precautions to take, and procedures to follow if the employee is involved in an accident or is exposed to toxic substances.

    3. submit an OS GetServices ticket for a safety or health hazard. A ticket may be submitted anonymously by calling the ERC (866-743-5748) or an SO, and withholding identification.

    4. gain access to employee exposure records (their own or representative exposure records) and their own medical records.

    5. request an OSHA inspection if they believe hazardous conditions or violations of standards exist in the workplace.

    6. exercise the right to have an authorized employee representative (such as a union representative) accompany the OSHA compliance officer during an inspection tour.

    7. respond to questions from an OSHA compliance officer.

    8. observe any monitoring or measuring of hazardous materials and see the resulting records.

    9. review or have an authorized representative review the OSHA Form 300, Log of Work-Related Occupational Injuries and Illnesses at a reasonable time and in a reasonable manner.

    10. object to the time frame set by OSHA for the employer to correct a violation by writing to the OSHA Area Director within 15 working days from the date the IRS receives a notice of unsafe or unhealthful working conditions.

    11. submit a written request to the National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health for information on whether any substance in the workplace has potentially toxic effects in the concentration being used, and, if requested, have their names withheld.

    12. receive notification if the IRS applies for a variance from an OSHA standard, and have an opportunity to testify at a variance hearing and appeal the final decision.

    13. have their names withheld from the IRS, by request to OSHA, if they sign and file a written complaint.

    14. be advised of OSHA actions regarding a complaint, and request an informal review of any decision not to inspect the site or issue a citation.

    15. file a complaint if punished or discriminated against for acting as a whistleblower under the OSH Act or other federal statutes, or for refusing to work when faced with imminent danger of death or serious injury and there is insufficient time for OSHA to inspect.