Department of Workplace Standards
The Department of Workplace Standards has the statutory authority and oversight to carry out the administrative duties of the Divisions of Employment Standards, Apprenticeship and Mediation, Workers’ Compensation Funds, Labor-Management Relations and Mediation, and the Occupational Safety and Health Program.

This Department of Workplace Standards has the responsibility of enforcing the statutes established in Chapters 207, 336, 337, 338, 339, 342, and 345 of the Kentucky Revised Statutes.

The Division of Workers' Compensation Funds is responsible for the administration of the Special Fund and the Coal Workers’ Pneumoconiosis Fund. This responsibility includes payment of claims and maintenance of appropriate records.

The Division of Employment Standards, Apprenticeship and Mediation is responsible for the enforcement of wage and hour laws, child labor laws, various discrimination laws, and the management and enforcement of prevailing wage rate determinations. This division is also responsible for the oversight and promotion of the state’s registered Apprenticeship and Training program.

Labor-Management Relations and Mediation provides resources to the Commonwealth's entire workforce to meet their labor-management relations needs.

The Occupational Safety and Health Program exercises jurisdiction for the enforcement, on-site consultation, standards promulgation, and training services related to workplace safety and health.
Commissioner Anthony Russell
A native of Owen County, Commissioner Russell began his employment with the (then) Department of Labor in 1978 as a summer intern. While attending college, Anthony continued for four (4) summers working in Service and Supply and Labor Standards. He began his career as a public servant in 1984 as an Employment Standards Investigator in the Division of Employment Standards and Mediation where he also worked as an Employment Standards Reviewer. Anthony transferred to the Occupational Safety and Health Program in 1993 as the Director of the Division of Education and Training where he served until 2004. He returned to state government in 2005 as the Administrative Safety Manager for the Kentucky Transportation Cabinet and served until his August 2012 retirement.

Anthony holds numerous certifications in the field of Occupational Safety and Health and is an Authorized OSHA Outreach Trainer, Certified American Traffic Safety Services Association Trainer, Certified Highway Safety Technician, Supervisor and Trainer, National Highway Traffic Safety Administration Trainer, Roadway Safety Institute Instructor, OSHA Training Institute Instructor, and Certified Red Cross Instructor. He has been recognized as an Ambassador of Labor and received the honor of becoming a member of the Honorable Order of Kentucky Colonels.

Anthony attended Morehead State University earning a Bachelor’s Degree in Business Administration-Management & Marketing and an MBA in Labor Relations and Economics. Since 2007, he was the Head Baseball Coach for the Frankfort High Panthers. Anthony resides in Frankfort with his wife Susan. They have two (2) sons, Wesley and Cameron, and one (1) grandson, Wyatt Alexander Russell.