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Enforcement

The Research Safety Program provides procedures to follow to ensure regulatory compliance; based upon the Office of Vice President for Research: Sponsored Projects' Regulatory Compliance model.

  1. Research Safety Officers (RSOs) will identify instances of non-compliance with environmental health and safety regulations and policies and will report them directly to the appropriate principal investigator. Cases of continued non-compliance will be reported to the unit head and to the Department of Environmental Health and Safety (DEHS). The RSO, in conjunction with the DEHS and the unit head, has the authority to halt research activities that present an imminent hazard.
  2. DEHS will carry out random inspections and will review records of RSOs. Reports will be made to principal investigators and, if necessary, unit heads.
  3. The Department of Audits will review compliance with environmental health and safety regulations as part of general audits. The Audit Report will be sent to the unit head and to DEHS.

Any administrator who receives a report of an alleged violation of environmental health and safety regulations and policies must take appropriate action including, but not limited to: investigating, taking steps to correct any violations, taking disciplinary action, or making reports to other appropriate authorities. If a reported violation is believed to be potentially serious (for example, if there is a high probability of injury or environmental damage, if it involves a significant violation of federal or state law, if there is a pattern of non-compliance, or if a large cost is involved) the Vice President for Research shall be notified promptly. The Vice President for Research shall consult with the University General Counsel and the Director of Audits regarding the appropriate investigation and disposition of such matters.

Any findings that a violation of environmental health and safety regulations and policies has occurred should be addressed promptly and steps taken to correct the violations. If an individual is found to have violated these regulations or policies or engaged in a pattern of non-compliance, disciplinary action may be appropriate. If the violation is egregious or a pattern or non-compliance exists, the Vice President of Research should be consulted.

Discipline must be administered consistent with the applicable employment policies, rules on contract, including labor agreement, for the affected employee's classification. Every employee will receive due process as prescribed by law and policy, rule, or contract. Discipline may be, but is not limited to: oral reprimands, written reprimands, suspension, reassignment, demotion, removal or research privileges or termination. An employee may also be subject to continued monitoring and evaluation of work. If the discipline involves removal of research privileges or termination, the appointing authority should consult with the Dean and Vice President for Research. Discipline should be administered by the appointing authority or a higher level administrator in the chain of authority. Employees who wish to grieve discipline must do so in accord with the applicable policy, rule, or contract, including labor agreement.

If the violation of environmental health and safety regulations and policies has a financial consequence (including but not limited to fines), the originating unit will be responsible for those and any derivative financial consequences.