May 15th, 2013 by Rebecca Ward
Typically, dealerships, garages, and body shops do not require a blood borne pathogens program because they are not exposed to blood on a regular basis. To find out if your facility is required to have a blood borne pathogens program, take an assessment here.
KPA recommends not keeping a blood borne pathogens kit on site if you aren’t required to. It can create undue attention in the case of OSHA inspections.
Keep your facility and your employees safe by finding out all you can about safety and requirements!
May 15th, 2013 by Rebecca Ward
Mental health issues affect roughly 25% of adults in the U.S., so it’s likely that at some point you will have a dealership employee who suffers from mental illness. Accommodating mental health can be a delicate matter. Note the following tips to avoid a workplace conflict over mental health:
If the illness hasn’t been disclosed, document any odd or poor behavior that may violate the company’s workplace violence policy, or if the behavior is affecting performance or operation. Always support your employee’s needs, asking open-ended questions in an effort to address any of your concerns.
If the employee does disclose mental illness, make sure to follow policy: keep the information as confidential as possible and follow the obligations under ADA policy to accommodate the employee.
May 14th, 2013 by Rebecca Ward
What is mindfulness anyway? Mindfulness has become the antithesis to multitasking; instead of focusing on many things at once, which can cause poor decision making and lead to confusion, stress, and poor communication, mindfulness includes calming and focusing of the mind, often through meditation and breathing practices. A 2003 study, and 6 week implementation of a mindfulness program, showed that 70% of participants took fewer sick days due to depression and anxiety. In the following 3 years following the study, absences for all health conditions were halved.
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May 8th, 2013 by Rebecca Ward
OSHA has instilled a variety of requirements for shops that have employees who wear respirators. This applies to any facility that conducts any spray coating operations including painting, priming, or rustproofing. To stay in compliance, make sure that you adhere to the following:
- Have a written program on file detailing your policies and procedures, when to use respirators, and how to use them.
- Annually train your employees on the use and limitations of the respirators that they will be using.
- Obtain medical evaluations for any employee that will be using respirators. This is one of the most frequent respirator violations!
- Certain types of dust masks can also be classified as respirators.
- Even if employees choose to wear respirators voluntarily, it is your responsibility to ensure they are medically evaluated to wear respirators and have been minimally trained on the limitations and use of their respirator.
May 7th, 2013 by Rebecca Ward
Mental health issues affect roughly 25% of adults in the U.S., so it’s likely that at some point you will have a dealership employee who suffers from mental illness. However, accommodating mental health can be a delicate matter, as there can be legal implications if you handle the matter out of turn. If you assume an employee has a mental health issue, before it has been disclosed, and treat the individual as disabled, you are breaching the law. So what do you do?
There are a variety of ways to handle mental illness. Firstly, if the illness hasn’t been disclosed, simply document any odd or poor behavior that is violating the company’s workplace violence policy, or if the behavior is affecting performance or operation. Always support your employee, and be certain to ask open-ended questions about how they are. If the employee does disclose mental illness, make sure to follow policy: keep the information as confidential as possible and follow the obligations under ADA policy to accommodate the employee. Most importantly, is the employee looking for accommodation or simply sharing the information? Simply support your employee and their needs- accommodate their schedule and, if they desire it, provide them with any information they may need on an employee assistance program. Communicate with them and encourage them to work with Human Resources as they need to.