Celeste Monforton, writing for this blog, was the first to report on a proposed new worker-health risk-assessment rule from the Department of Labor. Health advocates were concerned about the rule, which would have made it more difficult for the Occupational Safety and Health Administration and the Mine Safety and Health Administration to issue new regulations to protect workers from toxic substances. Many public-health organizations and officials raised their concerns to the executive branch and to Congress.

In an August 31, 2009 Federal Register notice, the Department of Labor officially withdrew the proposed rule, and public-health advocates breathed a sigh of relief.

The Pump Handle’s posts about the rule:
Secret Rule on OSHA Risk Assessment? (July 8, 2008 )
Congress demands briefing on Chao’s mystery proposal for risk assessment (July 10, 2008 )
Rushing NOT! to protect workers’ health (July 23, 2008 )
Chao’s ‘secret rule’ and your favorite workers (July 29,2008 )
Scientists Tell Chao to Scrap Risk-Assessment Rule (August 14, 2008)
Next steps for Chao’s Secret Rule (August 26, 2008 )
Chao flips us the bird. Happy Labor Day (August 28, 2008 )
Risk assessment “secret rule” officially withdrawn (August 31, 2009) 

Other resources:

Case Study: The Department of Labor’s Secret Risk-Assessment Rule
Scientists Urge Department of Labor to Withdraw Risk-Assessment Rule
OMB Watch Commentary: Bush’s Last-Minute Rush to Dismantle Public Protections

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