GSBE Weekly Update 04/11/2018
CA Employers Should Confirm That Their First-Aid Kits Comply with CAL/OSHA Standard
Cal/OSHA has recently increased enforcement of violations of a General Industry Safety Order requiring that employers’ first-aid materials be approved by a consulting physician. The California Code of Regulations, Title 8, Section 3400 (c) states, in relevant part: There shall be adequate first-aid materials, approved by the consulting physician, readily available for employees on every job. While most employers in California may have first-aid kits in place, many may not have kits that are specifically approved by a consulting physician. Lack of approval by a consulting physician makes a first-aid kit non-compliant with the standard subjecting the employer to potential citations for violating the standard. Cal/OSHA’s position is that the hazard associated with lack of approval by a consulting physician is that personal medications or unauthorized drugs might be placed inside a first-aid kit. Although there is some push in the legislature towards changing the standard to remove the requirement for approval by a consulting physician, until the change actually happens, California employers should be aware of this trend in increased citations for non-complying first-aid kits and ensure that workplace kits are in compliance with the standard. A likely easy and simple way to become compliant could be providing for review and approval to the employer’s consulting physician a written list of contents of the first-aid kit and documenting the physician’s approval.
Medicinal cannabis: employment discrimination AB2069
Existing law, the California Fair Employment and Housing Act, protects and safeguards the right and opportunity of all persons to seek, obtain, and hold employment without discrimination, abridgment, or harassment on account of race, religious creed, color, national origin, ancestry, physical disability, mental disability, medical condition, genetic information, marital status, sex, gender, gender identity, gender expression, age, sexual orientation, or military and veteran status. The act prohibits various forms of employment discrimination, including discharging or refusing to hire or to select for training programs on a prohibited basis.This bill would prohibit an employer from engaging in employment discrimination against a person on the basis of his or her status as, or positive drug test for cannabis by, a qualified patient or person with an identification card. The bill would provide that it does not prohibit an employer from refusing to hire an individual or discharging an employee who is a qualified or person with an identification card, if hiring or failing to discharge an employee would cause the employer to lose a monetary or licensing-related benefit under federal law. The bill would also provide that it does not prohibit an employer from terminating the employment of, or taking corrective action against, an employee who is impaired on the property or premises of the place of employment or during the hours of employment because of the use of cannabis.