The federal Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) has concluded that effective management of worker safety and health will result in reducing the extent and the severity of work-related injuries and illnesses. The four basic elements of an effective management program are management leadership and employee involvement, worksite analysis, prevention and control, and employee training. The agency believes that effective management will address all work-related hazards, including potential hazards that could result from a change in worksite conditions or practices. Effective management will address hazards whether or not they are regulated by government standards.
OSHA's experience with its Voluntary Protection Program (VPP) has also shown that effective management of safety and health protection improves employee morale and productivity and significantly reduces workers' compensation costs and other less obvious costs of work-related injuries and illnesses. In the VPP, OSHA partners with employers and employees to establish safety programs that go beyond the minimum requirements of the Occupational Safety and Health Act (OSH Act). According to OSHA, VPP sites generally experience 60 percent to 80 percent fewer lost workday injuries than equivalent sites in their industry. The VPP is designed to recognize and promote effective safety and health management. In the VPP, management, labor, and OSHA establish a cooperative relationship at a workplace that has implemented a strong safety and health program. The Virginia VPP (VVPP) described in this section is based on OSHA's VPP.
There is a detailed discussion of state workplace safety and health requirements.