DOL to seek information on workers’ “voice in the workplace”
The Department of Labor submitted an information collection request proposal for OMB review entitled, “2012 Wage and Hour Division and Occupational Safety and Health Administration Surveys Workers’ Voice in the Workplace.” The 2012 Wage and Hour Division and OSHA surveys will gauge the current level of workers’ voice in the workplace and factors affecting workers’ voice as it relates to laws administered by the agency.
The DOL working definition of voice in the workplace is “the worker’s ability to access information on his or her rights in the workplace, the worker’s understanding of those rights, and the worker’s ability to exercise those rights without fear of recrimination.” The surveys will measure each of these items, first individually and then in combination, to arrive at an overall measure of voice.
The DOL also hopes to learn how voice is related to workers’ perceptions of employer noncompliance, the agency said, such as whether particular dimensions of workers’ voice correlate to workers’ perceptions of noncompliance. The DOL said the study will also be useful in examining how noncompliance in one area, such as safety, is related to voice in the workplace and noncompliance in another area, such as wages.