Voluntary Protection Program (VPP)
Established by the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) in 1982,
VPPs were introduced
as a way to promote collaboration between government, industry, and labor to
achieve the common goal of effective worksite safety and health. Employers wishing
to participate must undergo a rigorous qualification process, including preparation
of detailed written documentation of their programs and a thorough onsite inspection.
Successful applicants must demonstrate a strong commitment to workplace safety
and health, especially at senior management levels, to qualify. Participants
who qualify for the highest tier of VPP status (Star level) are removed from
OSHA's programmed inspections list. (OSHA retains the right to investigate specific
complaints, accidents, and fatalities.) In 1994, the Department of Energy launched
a similar program for contractors employed at Department of Energy-owned facilities.