OSHA is reminding employers to protect worker safety and pay during the holiday season.

"During the busy holiday season, employers must focus on protecting their workers by anticipating and preventing potential hazards in the workplace," said Loren Sweatt, principal deputy assistant secretary of labor for occupational safety and health.

"All workers deserve a safe workplace, whether they are stocking shelves, packing boxes, delivering products, or selling merchandise."

OSHA offers holiday workplace safety resources on warehousing, tractor trailer drivers, forklift safety, winter weather, and crowd management for retailers.

OSHA also offers general safety guides that provide information on workers' rights, protecting temporary and seasonal workers, and safety for young workers.

Temporary or seasonal employees hired to provide additional help have the right to a safe and healthful workplace, and to be paid for their work, Sweatt said.

As hiring spikes, employees unfamiliar with seasonal employment, and employers unaccustomed to hiring part-time and/or seasonal employees, may not be fully aware of the rules that surround this work.

"The holiday shopping season increases the number of temporary and part-time workers, so it’s important that we inform these workers and their employers about rules governing work hours, wages, and employment conditions," said Wage and Hour Division administrator Cheryl Stanton.

The division enforces federal minimum wage, overtime pay, recordkeeping, and child labor requirements of the Fair Labor Standards Act.

Common holiday season labor violations include:

  • Failing to pay salespeople and cashiers for time spent prepping or closing out a register
  • Requiring stock room and warehouse personnel to work through breaks without compensation
  • Failing to provide overtime pay to employees working more than 40 hours in a workweek

For more information, contact CBIA's Phillip Montgomery (860.244.1982).