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The Department of Labor just announced strategic changes to the structure of its Occupational Safety and Health Administration’s regional operations designed to direct its resources effectively and make the agency more resilient.

The changes include the creation of a new OSHA regional office in Birmingham, Alabama, overseeing agency operations in the state, and those in Arkansas, Kentucky, Louisiana, Mississippi and Tennessee as well as the Florida Panhandle. The Birmingham Region will address the area’s growing worker population and the hazardous work done by people employed in food processing, construction, heavy manufacturing and chemical processing.

OSHA is also planning to merge Regions 9 and 10 (view the new regional map) into a new San Francisco Region to improve operations and reduce operating costs.

As part of the changes, the agency will also rename its regions to associate them by geography, rather than its current practice of assigning numbers to regions. As such, the area OSHA calls Region 4 will be renamed the Atlanta Region with jurisdiction over Florida, excluding the Panhandle; Georgia, North Carolina and South Carolina. The current Region 6 will be renamed the Dallas Region and have jurisdiction over workplace safety issues in New Mexico, Oklahoma and Texas.

The composition of OSHA’s other regions will remain the same.

The changes reflect the nation’s demographic and industrial changes since the passage of the OSH Act and will allow our professionals to better respond to the needs of all workers, including those historically underserved,” explained Assistant Secretary for Occupational Safety and Health Doug Parker.

“With a stronger enforcement presence in the South and more consolidated state oversight and whistleblower presence in the West – an area dominated by states that operate their OSHA programs – we can direct our resources where they’re needed most.”

OSHA plans to fully transition to its new regional structure later in fiscal year 2024. Once implemented, the agency’s regional maps and contact information online will be updated publicly.