IR #2002-05
Friday, May 3, 2002

Dean Fryer
Susan Gard
(415) 703-5050

News Advisory
California Department of Industrial Relations observes 75th anniversary
with conference, reception


Industrial Relations 75th anniversary conference, reception

Date & time

Thursday, June 27, 2002; Conference scheduled from 9:30 a.m. to 5 p.m.; Reception scheduled 5 p.m. to 7:30 p.m.


Special information

Background information

The California Department of Industrial Relations (DIR) was established in 1927 when precursors of its divisions of Labor Statistics and Research, Labor Standards Enforcement, Workers' Compensation and Occupational Safety and Health were consolidated with the Industrial Welfare Commission and Industrial Accident Board. By 1945 the Division of Apprenticeship Standards and Office of Self Insurance Plans were added, followed by the State Mediation and Conciliation Service in 1947. Now enforcing labor and workplace safety and health laws for more than 14 million California workers and 1.3 million employers, as well as overseeing the state's apprenticeship and workers' compensation systems, the DIR has expanded its resources and staffing under the Davis administration for the first time in almost two decades. Cal/OSHA, for example, has launched special inspection programs in agriculture and construction, two of the most dangerous industries in the state, using as deterrents some of the highest fines in the country as required by AB 1127, enacted in 1999. The Division of Workers' Compensation is implementing changes in the state's workers' compensation system resulting from passage of AB 749, including developing a return-to-work program to help educate the state's employers and workers about the benefits of returning an injured employee to work as soon as medically feasible. The Division of Apprenticeship Standards has dramatically increased the number of apprentices and implemented a system for apprenticeship program audits. Finally, the Division of Labor Standards Enforcement has expanded enforcement with restoration of daily overtime and its extension to industries such as construction, mining and drilling, offered greater security to displaced janitors and established an office in Fresno and a verification system for farm labor contractor licenses.