The Occupational Safety and Health Administration has joined forces with the American Staffing Association, the ASA reports. The goal is protect the interests of temporary workers through sharing information, providing mutual guidance and creating training resources.

"Through this alliance with ASA, we will increase outreach to staffing firms and host employers and provide information and education that is vital to protecting temporary workers," said David Michaels, Ph.D., MPH, Assistant Secretary of Labor for Occupational Safety and Health.

More specifically, the two groups will develop programs that will recognize and prevent workplace hazards. They will also appear and speak at each other's events, such as local meetings and conferences. OSHA personnel and other professionals will also share data about worker safety.

Those in the temporary services industry can only welcome such a collaboration between two major groups. Protecting temporary workers from harm is one of the chief duties of the staffing industry. A government organization working together with an association of private companies will allow for greater transparency in the industry and show staffing in a better light than it currently has. There are many outside parties concerned about "perma-temps."

OSHA is very clear about how temps should be treated. On their website, they have a list of shared responsibilities for staffing companies and companies that host the contract worker. There is also a quote at the top of the page:

"Host employers need to treat temporary workers as they treat existing employees. Temporary staffing agencies and host employers share control over the employee, and are therefore jointly responsible for temp employee's safety and health. It is essential that both employers comply with all relevant OSHA requirements."

This speaks to the importance of everyone involved with a temporary employee working to ensure the employee is treated fairly and given the rights he or she deserves.

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