Repetitive-motion injury regulations are being developed. Employers will be required to file reports on jobs that may cause such injuries and offer ergonomic training, proper equipment and suitable work breaks.
Employers will have to write their own safety and health programs under a rule proposed for 1998. The legislation will apply to firms with 10 or more workers. Requirement is that plans be developed to make the most dangerous jobs safer.
OSHA will issue workplace violence guidelines later this year. Guidelines to include bulletproof glass and better lighting at convenience stores, fast-food establishments and other operations opened late at night.
Health Insurance Issues:
Higher Insurance premiums likely in the year ahead. Around 4% to 6%, with smaller companies getting the largest increases. Much of the reason is the new government requirement to provide more services. Also, managed care firms are intent on improving their profit margins by passing more costs along to their customers.