95-252. Safety and health committees required.

(a) Establishment of safety and health committees. Except as provided in subsection (b) of this section, each employer with 11 or more employees and an experience rate modifier of 1.5 or greater shall provide for the establishment of safety and health committees and the selection of employee safety and health representatives in accordance with this section.

(b) Temporary help services. Temporary employees of employers which provide temporary help services shall not be counted as part of the 11 or more employees needed to establish a safety and health committee under this section, and employers which provide temporary help services shall not be required to establish a safety and health committee under this section for its employees assigned to a client's worksite. This subsection shall not apply to employee leasing companies.

(c) Safety and health committee requirements.

(1) In general. Each employer covered by this section shall establish a safety and health committee at each worksite of the employer, except as provided as follows:

a. An employer covered by this section whose employees do not primarily report to or work at a fixed location is required to have only one safety and health committee to represent all employees.

b. A safety and health committee is not required at a covered employer's worksite with less than 11 employees.

c. The Commissioner may, by rule, modify the application of this subdivision to worksites where employees of more than one employer are employed.

(2) Membership. Each safety and health committee shall consist of:

a. The employee safety and health representatives selected or appointed under subsection (d) of this section.

b. As determined appropriate by the employer, employer representatives, the number of which may not exceed the number of employee representatives.

(3) Chairpersons. Each safety and health committee shall be cochaired by:

a. A representative selected by the employer.

b. A representative selected by the employee members of the committee.

(4) Rights. Each safety and health committee shall, within reasonable limits and in a reasonable manner, exercise the following rights:

a. Review any safety and health program established by the employer under G.S. 95-251.

b. Review incidents involving work-related fatalities, injuries and illnesses, and complaints by employees regarding safety or health hazards.

c. Review, upon the request of the committee or upon the request of the employer representatives or employee representatives of the committee, the employer's work injury and illness records, other than personally identifiable medical information, and other reports or documents relating to occupational safety and health.

d. Conduct inspections of the worksite at least once every three months and in response to complaints by employees or committee members regarding safety or health hazards.

e. Conduct interviews with employees in conjunction with inspections of the worksite.

f. Conduct meetings, at least once every three months, and maintain written minutes of the meetings.

g. Observe the measurement of employee exposure to toxic materials and harmful physical agents.

h. Establish procedures for exercising the rights of the committee.

i. Make recommendations on behalf of the committee, and in making recommendations, permit any members of the committee to submit separate views to the employer for improvements in the employer's safety and health program and for the correction of hazards to employee safety or health, except that recommendations shall be advisory only and the employer shall retain full authority to manage the worksite.

j. Accompany, upon request, the Commissioner or the Commissioner's representative during any physical inspection of the worksite.

(5) Time for committee activities. The employer shall permit members of the committee established under this section to take the time from work reasonably necessary to exercise the rights of the committee without suffering any loss of pay or benefits for time spent on duties of the committee.

(d) Employee safety and health representatives.

(1) In general. Safety and health committees established under this section shall include:

a. One employee safety and health representative where the average number of nonmanagerial employees of the employer at the worksite during the preceding year was more than 10, but less than 50.

b. Two employee safety and health representatives where the average number of nonmanagerial employees of the employer at the worksite during the preceding year was 50 or more, but less than 100.

c. An additional employee safety and health representative for each additional 100 such employees at the worksite, up to a maximum of six employee safety and health representatives.

d. Where an employer's employees do not primarily report to or work at a fixed location or at worksites where employees of more than one employer are employed, a number of employee safety and health representatives as determined by the Commissioner by rule.

(2) Selection. Employee safety and health representatives shall be selected by and from among the employer's nonmanagerial employees in accordance with rules adopted by the Commissioner. The rules adopted by the Commissioner may provide for different methods of selection of employee safety and health representatives at worksites with no bargaining representative, worksites with one bargaining representative, and worksites with more than one bargaining representative. (1991 (Reg. Sess., 1992), c. 962, s. 1.)