EPA launches pesticide worker protection dashboard

As part of the Environmental Protection Agency's overall efforts to increase protection for farmworkers from pesticide exposure and increase transparency, the agency recently launched a new Pesticide Worker Protection Dashboard. This interactive tool provides charts and graphs presenting certain key enforcement and compliance information related to the Worker Protection Standard (WPS) program under the Federal Insecticide, Fungicide, and Rodenticide Act (FIFRA). This effort reflects our ongoing commitment to make environmental data accessible and easy to use. The WPS dashboard presents information on the regulated community and answers questions like:

  • how many facilities in the United States employ workers or handlers covered by the Worker Protection Standard;
  • how many inspections are reported;
  • how many violations have been found, and what enforcement actions have been taken by states, tribes and/or EPA.

This information will help allow the public and regulators to monitor the types of worker protection violations found in their state and in adjoining states so that they can adjust compliance assistance and education efforts or target inspections to increase compliance. Greater compliance means better protection for agricultural workers and fewer pesticide exposure incidents among farmworkers and their family members. That means a healthier workforce, reductions in lost wages and medical bills, and fewer absences from work and school. The public will be able to see the number of operations and workers covered by the Worker Protection Standard, and see the types and numbers of responses by the state, territory, tribe or EPA. Most states, territories and several tribes have primary authority for compliance monitoring and enforcement against the use of pesticides in violation of the labeling requirements (this is commonly referred to as state primacy). It is important to note that the data may not reflect all compliance monitoring, inspections and enforcement activity within a state or tribe and that database will be updated.

EPA's final WPS will strengthen protection for farmworkers.

The WPS is aimed at reducing the risk of pesticide poisoning and injury among agricultural workers and pesticide handlers. The WPS offers occupational protection to nearly 2 million agricultural workers (people involved in the production of agricultural plants such as picking crops) and pesticide handlers (people who mix, load, or apply crop pesticides) who work at farms, forests, nurseries and greenhouses.

You can access the WPS Dashboard at http://echo.epa.gov/trends/comparative-maps-dashboards/state-pest-dashboard?state.