Banned OSHA Videos
These three big budget films were made by OSHA in 1980 during the Carter Administration. They were produced to provide a quick but damning history of OHS in the U.S. from the Industrial Revolution to the 1970s. Then in 1981, the incoming head of OSHA Thorne Auchter recalled and burned most copies – reportedly because they were way too biased toward workers – that’s probably a big understatement? A few copies were kept alive by renegade union officials who refused to return their copies. The penalty then for being discovered in possession of one of these films was loosing all OSHA funding for their safety and health programs. There were a number of clandestine showings after the banning and there was a certain forbidden attraction which the Unions exploited.
Recently, one of those union officials decided that these films should be released to the public and made them available to PublicResource.Org
There is nothing very positive portrayed about OHS pre-1970 and the videos paint a pretty damaging picture of industry, the plight and suffering of workers, nationwide worker protests and the heroic efforts of OSHA with their new rules and hazard control measures. Interesting to watch but I hope some modern day safety zealot doesn’t take these and use them for evil.
Thanks to Dave Weber from Safety Awakenings for sharing.
The History of OSHA
Worker to Worker (1980)