Standardization for Workplace Chemical Labeling

June 8, 2015

OSHA and Health Canada to improve hazard communications for worker safety.

In an effort to reduce inconsistencies between hazard communication regulations, OSHA will continue to work with Health Canada to better align the regulatory approaches used by the two organizations to maintain worker safety.

As part of their work on the Regulatory Cooperation Council, the agencies will develop improvements in labelling and classification requirements for workplace chemicals. The ultimate goal of the partnership is to create a system that uses one consistent label and a single safety data sheet for workplace chemicals that would be recognized in both the U.S. and Canada.

The partnership looks to continue on the enhancements made in a 2013 Memorandum of Understanding signed by the two organizations, which encouraged the implementation of the Globally Harmonized System of Classification and Labelling. OSHA aligned its safety standard with the GHS in 2012, while Health Canada updated its regulations in February 2015.

“Through this partnership, OSHA and Health Canada will work together to reduce inconsistencies among hazard communication regulations and provide concise information to protect workers exposed to hazardous chemicals without reducing current protections,” says David Michaels, assistant secretary of labor for OSHA.

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