February 2014

Ask Technical


Under what work circumstances is an employer required to provide gloves to employees?


The employer must do a hazard assessment of the worksite – taking into account all of the tasks that employees are required to do – and identify what personal protective equipment (including gloves) is necessary to protect the employees from the hazards. The employer must provide, at no cost to the employee, personal protective equipment identified through a hazard assessment, or required by another Oregon OSHA rule. There are some exceptions, but gloves are not one of them.

For example, if an employee needs hand protection from the effects of a corrosive chemical, the employer must provide the employee with a glove that protects against the chemical's corrosive effects at no cost to the employee. If the employee also needs voltage-rated gloves to work on electrically charged lines, the employer must provide them and pay for them as well.

An employer must also replace worn-out gloves, but does not have to pay for replacement gloves when an employee loses them or deliberately damages them.

The employer does not have to pay for gloves when they are not required for hazard protection. However, an employee who prefers to wear gloves anyway can purchase them. In some cases – if the employee is working around machines with moving parts, for example – an employee must not wear gloves under any circumstances.

For more information, see 437-002-0134 Personal Protective Equipment.

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