Bipartisan Lawmakers Tell OSHA: Stay Off Small Farms

Since 1976, Congress has banned OSHA from regulating farming operations with ten or fewer employees.  However, in 2011, OSHA issued a memo indicating the Agency has authority to regulate certain “post-harvest” activities on farms of all sizes.

“Farmers and landowners have a strong vested and personal interest in keeping their operations safe and viable, and they are already subject to countless regulations to ensure operational integrity,” the Members wrote.  “We ask you to direct OSHA … to issue an updated memo clarifying OSHA has no authority to regulate any aspect of an agricultural operation with ten or fewer employees.”

In reponse, the Department of Labor agreed to revoke the memo and issue new guidance after working with the U.S. Department of Agriculture and agriculture organizations.  A copy of the Department's response can be viewed below.  

To view a copy of the letter Members sent to the Department of Labor, please click here.