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Cal/OSHA Summit 2021

Cal/OSHA Summit 2021

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Cal/OSHA Summit 2021

October 14-15, 2021 | San Diego, CA

CONFERENCE SNAPSHOT: Cal/OSHA Summit 2021 is the leading state-specific event for California employers and safety professionals to learn cutting-edge developments on new safety regulations, compliance strategies, and management tactics. It provides three days of networking and learning opportunities. Attendees are eligible for safety and California HR continuing education credits.

As a safety professional, 2020 was a challenging year, to say the least. Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, California employers were tasked with enforcing social distancing guidelines and other new safety precautions, like California’s emergency temporary standard (ETS) for workplace COVID-19 exposures.

In late 2020, the California Division of Occupational Safety and Health (Cal/OSHA) emergency temporary standards on COVID-19 infection prevention went into effect. These new temporary standards apply to most workers in California not covered by Cal/OSHA’s Aerosol Transmissible Diseases standard.

Part of the rules requires employers to have a written COVID-19 prevention plan to address issues, including procedures for screening employees for symptoms; providing face coverings and ensuring they are worn; and identifying and evaluating COVID-19 exposure hazards and workplace conditions and practices that could result in potential exposure, among other things.

While COVID-19 was a challenge in and of itself, the virus also spurred new regulations and requirements related to everyday, standard workplace issues. For instance, California’s heat illness prevention standard now requires employers to protect workers from heat illnesses while also enforcing the use of face coverings and keeping workers safe against COVID-19.

And if you think your workplace is safe from violated Cal/OSHA COVID-19 guidelines, think again; the virus knows no bounds, and no industry is safe! Take, for example, the five grocery stores in Southern California that were cited by Cal/OSHA for failing to protect their employees from COVID-19 in October and the various police departments, hospitals, and manufacturers that were also cited throughout 2020.

In order to keep your workforce safe from COVID-19 and other workplace safety issues, you won’t want to miss the Cal/OSHA Summit 2021. Cal/OSHA Summit 2021 is the leading state-specific event for California employers and safety professionals to learn cutting-edge developments on new safety regulations, compliance strategies, and management tactics. It provides 3 days of networking and learning opportunities. Attendees are eligible for safety and California HR continuing education credits.

Who should attend?

  • Safety directors
  • Risk management directors
  • Environment, health, and safety (EHS) managers
  • Health and safety officers
  • Facilities supervisors
  • HR managers
  • Vice presidents
  • Quality assurance managers
  • Safety coordinators
  • Safety, health, and environment specialists
  • Safety attorneys
  • Loss control specialists
  • Business owners
  • Compliance specialists
  • Corporate safety professionals

Pre-conference Agenda

Pre-conference Workshops—Wednesday, October 13, 2021

*Additional registration required.

Choose an AM or a PM workshop, or attend both and save $99!

AM Pre-conference Workshop
Workers’ Compensation and Return to Work for EHS professionals: Managing Claims and Controlling Costs Through Safety Initiatives
8:30 a.m.–11:30 a.m. (refreshment break from 10:30 a.m.–10:45 a.m.)
Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, California employers have another obstacle to overcome when handling workers’ compensation claims: proving employees didn’t contract the virus at the workplace.

In September 2020, Governor Gavin Newsom signed a new law that establishes a workers' compensation presumption that will apply to most employers in the state that have a COVID-19 outbreak through 2022. The law, SB 1159, will shift the burden of proof to presume that covered workers who contracted COVID-19 did so at work, unless the employer can prove otherwise.

When an employee is injured or suffers an illness, whether the cause is occupational or not, it’s important for the safety and HR teams to evaluate when, and in what capacity, the worker can return to work, either to full duty or with light-duty restrictions or other accommodations. 

By returning the worker to duty sooner, you may reduce workers’ compensation exposure in the event the employee’s condition is due to an industrial injury or occupational exposure to a harmful agent. But, on the other hand, if an employee returns to work too soon, he or she may be at risk for reinjury. Plus, it’s important to balance your organization’s practical considerations with your legal obligations and rights under California and federal law. 

This intensive session is designed to walk you through the return-to-work process here in California so you’re prepared to deal with potential challenges associated with administering fitness-for-duty examinations and providing accommodations.

You’ll learn:

  • How COVID-19 exposure can impact workers’ compensation claims;
  • The ins and outs of SB 1159 and its reporting requirements;
  • What the “rebuttable presumption” is and how it will apply if a COVID-19 "outbreak" occurs;
  • When a fitness-for-duty examination should be requested;
  • The types of medical information available to employers and what’s off limits;
  • How to tell if a worker is or is not eligible to return to work;
  • Your obligation to grant reasonable accommodations under the state’s Fair Employment and Housing Act and Americans with Disabilities Act;
  • Legal strategies for managing injured or sick employees’ return to work; and
  • Requirements under the California Family Rights Act, including the granting of medical leaves of absence and medical privacy concerns.

Lunch on your own
11:30 a.m.–1:00 p.m.

PM Pre-conference Workshop
Cal/OSHA 101: Understanding and Complying with the Nation’s Strictest Workplace Safety Laws
1:00 p.m.–4:00 p.m. (refreshment break from 2:30 p.m.–2:45 a.m.)
When considering the effectiveness of workplace safety regulations, some debate whether strong standards alone are sufficient to protect workers or whether strong standards are of little value without equally strong enforcement. These questions often come up when comparing the federal Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) and Cal/OSHA, and, at least in the area of standard setting, Cal/OSHA is significantly stricter than its federal counterpart.

When comparing federal OSHA and Cal/OSHA, it is important to emphasize that states generally have fewer obstacles to overcome in issuing regulations of any type than a federal agency, which must account for greater state-by-state diversity, demands from many more stakeholders, and pressure from more political leaders.

With that being said, Cal/OSHA has been aggressive in issuing standards that either are more stringent than federal OSHA’s baseline standards or have no federal counterpart at all. As a safety professional, you must stay on top of the changing landscape surrounding Cal/OSHA, and that means knowing the ins and outs of the law and how to comply with the nation’s most strict workplace safety law.

This informative session will cover the key differences between Cal/OSHA and federal OSHA and gives a broad overview of the basic steps to building a Cal/OSHA-compliant safety program. We’ll also cover:

  • The unique Cal/OSHA enforcement priorities and processes;
  • How to handle frequent agency inspections;
  • The Injury and Illness Prevention Program (IIPP) and other written plan requirements;
  • Compliance with new standards, such as indoor heat hazards and heat stress;
  • Training techniques to remain in compliance; and
  • Tips and tricks for multistate compliance for California employers that operate in other states.


Main Conference (Day 1)—Thursday, October 14, 2021

Registration & Breakfast with Exhibitors
7:30 a.m.–8:30 a.m.

Welcome Remarks
8:30 a.m.–8:35 a.m.

Session 1—Important Cal/OSHA Updates for 2022: Enforcement Trends, Regulatory Developments, and How to Close Your Compliance Gaps
8:35 a.m.–9:35 a.m.
COVID-19 dominated the headlines throughout 2020 and continues to be top of mind as employers work to ensure workplace health and safety. As a result of the pandemic, Cal/OSHA and other agencies implemented various laws and regulations to help employers navigate the crisis. While we hope the pandemic is officially vanquished in 2022, we can’t help but wonder what the year ahead will look like.

What were the top safety compliance priorities in 2021 for the Division of Occupational Safety and Health, the Appeals Board, and the Standards Board here in California? What new regulations can we expect, and how will they impact your business?

You’ll get answers to these questions and more when Cal/OSHA 2021 kicks off, with critical updates on new court rulings, policy initiatives, regulatory enforcement, and training requirements under federal OSHA and Cal/OSHA. Will your California facility be able to stay in compliance with upcoming regulations?

After attending this session, you will be able to:

  • Uncover all the laws and regulations impacting safety professionals in 2021.
  • Identify possible impacts on Cal/OSHA as a result of the new Biden administration.
  • Take steps to minimize Cal/OSHA citation risks given Cal/OSHA’s enforcement priorities.
  • Apply lessons learned from 2021 Cal/OSHA enforcement data and trends, especially COVID-19-related.
  • Recognize the impact of rulemaking, policy, and deregulatory developments for the coming year.

Networking & Refreshments with Exhibitors
9:35 a.m.–9:55 a.m.

Session 2—Workplace Violence Prevention: Policies and Practices for the Proposed General Industry Standard  
9:55 a.m.–10:55 a.m.
In 2017, California became the first state to require all healthcare facilities to implement protective measures for workers who may be exposed to violence. This also prompted California to become the first state to issue general industry workplace violence rules. However, due to the coronavirus pandemic, the rulemaking process has been put on hold, but this doesn’t mean employers shouldn’t prepare for the rule’s eventual passing.

The proposed rule defines workplace violence as “any act of violence or threat of violence that occurs at the work site,” excluding “lawful acts of self-defense or defense of other[s].” The proposal would also require covered employers to develop a workplace violence prevention plan that includes specific processes and procedures for identifying and preventing violence in the workplace.

In this session, you’ll learn:

  • How to identify the different types of workplace violence,
  • The steps to take to develop a general workplace violence prevention plan,
  • Key provisions for training employees on workplace violence prevention,
  • What types of records you need to maintain to remain compliant under the proposed rule, and
  • How to communicate your plan to workers.   

Session 3—Safety Culture: How an Effective Safety Committee Can Be a Driver for Workplace Safety
11:00 a.m.–12:00 p.m.
Whether it is acknowledged or not, every company has a safety culture—and just like other aspects of organizational success, your safety culture will only be as strong as the efforts dedicated to it. One way to ensure your organization is operating safely is to develop a safety committee.

Having a safety committee can help reduce the number of workplace injuries and illnesses and workers’ compensation claims while bolstering your compliance with federal or state occupational safety and health regulations. Additionally, employers in California may use safety committees to satisfy the communication requirement of the IIPP standard.

This session will cover the pros and cons of using safety committees to ensure that your organization remains safe and compliant, and you’ll also learn:

  • Strategies for creating a safety committee,
  • Cal/OSHA safety committee requirements for employers that elect to use them,
  • Best practices to satisfy communication requirements under the IIPP rule,
  • How to develop an annual safety plan of action with specific goals, and
  • How to identify the current values, attitudes, and perceptions surrounding safety at your organization—and how to change them if need be.

Networking & Lunch with Exhibitors—Lunch is provided
12:00 p.m.–1:00 p.m.

Session 4—Marijuana in California: Conducting Routine, Random, Reasonable Suspicion, and Postaccident Drug Testing without Violating Applicable, Federal, State, or Local Laws
1:00 p.m.–2:00 p.m.
Marijuana is becoming increasingly common in our society and in our workplace. Though medical marijuana has been legal in California since the Compassionate Use Act of 1996, the legalization of recreational marijuana has increased the number of times employers encounter situations with employees who are using or have used marijuana.

Despite the continued validity of zero-tolerance policies, some California employers have begun to move away from the hard-and-fast rules and relax their drug testing policies, which could spell trouble for safety professionals tasked with keeping workers safe.

Outside of uniform preemployment drug testing, employers can only require drug tests of employees if there is a reasonable suspicion that the employees have been using drugs. This uniform application is where marijuana testing often hits a snag. Where does that leave employers seeking a drug-free workplace for safety reasons?

Learn how to legally conduct postaccident drug testing in accordance with applicable California laws and conduct proper “reasonable suspicion” training in this engaging session. You’ll also learn how to:

  • Identify the circumstances in which Cal/OSHA may consider recreational or medical marijuana testing illegal retaliation.
  • Recognize how Cal/OSHA’s postincident drug testing rule interacts with other state and federal drug testing laws.
  • Implement best practices for balancing competing safety and legal considerations when developing a drug testing strategy.
  • Develop reasonable suspicion training for supervisors.
  • Create a drug and alcohol testing policy that protects the safety and health of employees and the public.

Session 5—Emergency Action Plans: Planning and Protecting Employees from Wildfires, Earthquakes, Pandemics, and Other Disasters
2:05 p.m.–3:05 p.m.
According to the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration’s (NOAA) National Centers for Environmental Information (NCEI), 2020 saw a record-breaking U.S. wildfire season, which burned more than 10.2 million acres. California more than doubled its previous annual record for area burned (last set in 2018), with over 4.1 million acres. “In total, it is clear that 2020 stands head and shoulders above all other years in regard to the number of billion-dollar disasters,” says the NCEI in its billion-dollar disaster report.

Although California workplaces can’t control wildfires and other unexpected occurrences, employers can successfully survive such events, provided they invest the time and resources needed to be prepared. So, what actions should you take to be ready to combat a disaster in the Golden State?

In this session, a safety expert will cover the ins and outs of creating an emergency action plan (EAP) that meets local county or city requirements, as well as other ways your organization can prepare to protect itself against natural and other disasters. You’ll also learn:

  • Which departments to involve in developing your facility’s EAP;
  • How to successfully involve management, line supervisors, and employees in the EAP;
  • Signs that a written EAP falls short of meeting Cal/OSHA requirements for documentation;
  • Employee and workplace training that should be included in the EAP;
  • What an acceptable “means of egress” really means;
  • Ways to assess whether employees have been successfully evacuated;
  • Tips for developing evacuation and exit routes;
  • Strategies for protecting workers from wildfire smoke and the applicable respiratory protection requirements;
  • How to develop adequate procedures for reporting emergencies; and
  • How often to review your EAP to meet Cal/OSHA requirements.

Networking & Refreshments with Exhibitors
3:05 p.m.–3:25 p.m.

Session 6—Let’s ‘Toolbox Talk’! How to Deliver an A-Plus Safety Training Experience 
3:25 p.m.–4:25 p.m.  
Which do you suppose a worker will remember more clearly: the weeklong safety course he or she completed 6 months ago or the 15-minute safety chat the foreman gave at the beginning of the shift addressing the specific job tasks the worker would do that day?

If you guessed the 15-minute chat, you guessed correctly. These informal chats, also referred to as “toolbox talks” or “tailgate talks,” are worth conducting because of their immediacy and relevance, and they can also offer more bang for your safety training buck.

Brief toolbox talks can be plugged into busy production schedules to relay new safety precautions or reinforce the safety message. When giving such a talk before a shift begins, for example, you can present the information yourself, but you also want to make sure trainees are involved.

Learn how to conduct successful toolbox talks in this engaging session. You’ll also learn:

  • The “5 Ps” of safety training;
  • Why the “show and tell” method is perfect for knowledge retention;
  • Which key performance indicators are needed to ensure safety training is effective;
  • Other methods of providing safety training;
  • How to conduct informal training sessions that comply with social distancing guidelines and other COVID-19-related safety precautions;
  • The importance of documenting all training, including informal toolbox talks (i.e., with attendance sheets), if employers want it to count toward compliance with safety regulations, and
  • The legal concerns to be aware of when offering informal training.


Main Conference (Day 2)—Friday, October 15, 2021

Breakfast with Exhibitors
7:15 a.m.–8:15 a.m.

Breakfast and Learn
7:30 a.m.–7:45 a.m.

Session 7—Cal/OSHA Injury & Illness Recordkeeping Tripwires to Avoid  
8:15 a.m.–9:15 a.m.
Staying on top of California’s strict and ever-changing workplace safety standards is a constant struggle for employers in the state. From COVID-19 protocols and wildfire smoke protection standards to the new rules on indoor heat stress, workplace violence in general industry, and more, Cal/OSHA is continuing to impose new and challenging compliance requirements.

This session will cover all the recent changes to workplace safety standards that impact your recordkeeping practices, the latest developments on the push for more stringent injury and illness recordkeeping requirements in California, and how you can avoid legal tripwires along the way.

You’ll learn how to:

  • Follow California’s stricter requirements for severe injury reporting.
  • Identify the differences between federal and California injury and illness recordkeeping requirements.
  • Pinpoint the most important recent and upcoming Cal/OSHA regulatory developments with the potential to impact your organization.
  • Take steps to reduce your risk of citations and fines based on your understanding of California’s aggressive enforcement strategies.
  • Change to the definition of “occurrence” as it pertains to injury and illness recordkeeping violations—and how it changes employers’ exposure to citations and fines under an expanded statute of limitations.
  • Maintain complete, accurate, and compliant injury and illness records.
  • Identify the impact of California’s efforts to counter deregulation at the federal level with stringent state standards.
  • Point out common safety pain points and missteps among California employers and close compliance gaps for your organization.

Networking & Refreshments with Exhibitors—Raffle Prize Giveaway
9:15 a.m.–9:40 a.m.

Session 8—Injury and Illness Prevention Plans: Avoiding the Top Cal/OSHA Violation with an Effectively Implemented Program
9:40 a.m.–10:40 a.m.
California law requires all employers to develop and implement written and effective IIPPs. This is a mandatory requirement, but year after year, it continues to be Cal/OSHA’s most violated standard. What makes this compliance requirement so challenging to meet?

This session will teach you how to create and develop a program that is effective in educating and empowering all employees in reducing or eliminating accidents and incidents through the use of risk assessment, employee engagement and communication, and active leadership support and involvement.

Our presenter will also explain the development and implementation of an IIPP and how to avoid compliance missteps in the Golden State.

You’ll also learn how to:

  • Apply proven strategies for drafting and implementing an effective IIPP.
  • Understand how an IIPP works.
  • Recognize the costs associated with workplace injuries and illnesses and why having an IIPP is so important.
  • What belongs in an IIPP.
  • Gain insight into potential rulemaking at Cal/OSHA that could significantly increase the electronic recordkeeping burden for employers in the state.
  • Maintain complete, accurate, and compliant injury and illness records.


Session 9Selling Safety to the C-Suite: Using Metrics to Demonstrate the ROI of Safety and Gain Support from Company Leadership
10:45 a.m.–11:45 a.m.
Professional development is essential to advancing a career in any occupation, and of course, the safety profession is no exception. There are many opportunities for development out there for the 21st-century safety professional, ranging from traditional certifications to supplemental training to brand-new educational programs supported by digital delivery methods.

Choosing the right training program for your workers is essential, but there may be one roadblock standing in your way: convincing the C-suite that these training programs are worth the investment. Learn how to gain safety training buy-in from your executive team and how to boost safety training success in our final session of the Cal/OSHA Summit 2021.

  • Uncover new training options available to safety professionals.
  • Learn which metrics to track to see if your training programs are effective.
  • Understand the data involved in making decisions at the C-suite level.
  • Create communication strategies for convincing leadership to buy in.
  • And more!

Conference Adjourns
11:45 a.m.

Agenda and speakers subject to change.

Your Conference Presenters

*Coming Soon! 


Hilton San Diego Mission Valley

When: Wednesday-Friday, October 13-15, 2021
Where: Hilton San Diego Mission Valley
901 Camino Del Rio South
San Diego, CA 92108
Room Rate: $165/ night
Hotel cut-off date: Monday, September 20, 2021
Reservation Center: 1-800-744-1500 and reference the Cal/OSHA Summit


NOTE: Simplify Compliance/Brand has no affiliation with any third party companies or travel assistance providers. Hotel rooms should be booked directly with the hotel via the official hotel information listed on the website and registration brochure.

Pricing Details

Main Conference

  • Retail Pricing | $799

Pre-conference Workshops:

  • AM/PM Pre-conference Sessions | $299 each
  • Both AM/PM Workshops | $499 (Save $99 when you purchase both!)

*Send a Team of Five or more and save an additional 20%! (Your discounts will automatically calculate in your cart.)

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