Saturday, October 28, 2017

Prolonged Standing and Walking Required of Medium Work -- Use the ORS

In an earlier post, I addressed three occupations and looked at the amount of standing and walking in the day using the O*NET OnLine.  Prolonged Standing and Walking Required of Medium Work -- Three Examples.  Never satisfied until the we beat the dead horse to dust -- or as Judge Betty Fletcher said at least twice that I know of, you wouldn't shoot a dead duck twice?  As a matter of fact, I would, just to be for sure for sure.

Piling on the O*NET discussion, let's add the Occupational Requirements Survey from the Bureau of Labor Statistics.

Occupational Requirements Survey
Original Data Value
Series Id: ORUP1000061600001004
Not seasonally adjusted
Series Title: Civilian workers; dining room and cafeteria attendants and bartender helpers; % of day standing/walking (10th percentile)
Occupation: Dining Room and Cafeteria Attendants and Bartender Helpers
Requirement: Physical Requirement
Category: Standing/walking
Estimate: Percent of day where standing/walking is required (10th Percentile)
Ownership: Civilian workers
Industry: All workers
Job Characteristic: All workers
Years: 2016 to 2016
Year Period Estimate Value Standard Error
2016 Annual 87.5 2.6

Dining room attendants stand or walk 87.5% of the time or less -- at the tenth percentile.  Climb the percentile and we get to 100%.

Occupational Requirements Survey
Original Data Value
Series Id: ORUP1000061700001004
Not seasonally adjusted
Series Title: Civilian workers; dishwashers; % of day standing/walking (10th percentile)
Occupation: Dishwashers
Requirement: Physical Requirement
Category: Standing/walking
Estimate: Percent of day where standing/walking is required (10th Percentile)
Ownership: Civilian workers
Industry: All workers
Job Characteristic: All workers
Years: 2016 to 2016
Year Period Estimate Value Standard Error
2016 Annual 90.0 2.3

Dishwashers stand or walk 90% of the time or less -- at the tenth percentile.

Occupational Requirements Survey
Original Data Value
Series Id: ORUP1000062300001004
Not seasonally adjusted
Series Title: Civilian workers; maids and housekeeping cleaners; % of day standing/walking (10th percentile)
Occupation: Maids and Housekeeping Cleaners
Requirement: Physical Requirement
Category: Standing/walking
Estimate: Percent of day where standing/walking is required (10th Percentile)
Ownership: Civilian workers
Industry: All workers
Job Characteristic: All workers
Years: 2016 to 2016
Year Period Estimate Value Standard Error
2016 Annual 87.5 5.3

Maids and Housekeeping Cleaners stand or walk 87.5% of the time or less -- at the tenth percentile.




Prolonged Standing and Walking Required of Medium Work -- Three Examples

Social Security Ruling 83-10 informs the agency that the full range of medium work permits something other than standing and walking during the day:
A full range of medium work requires standing or walking, off and on, for a total of approximately 6 hours in an 8-hour workday in order to meet the requirements of frequent lifting or carrying objects weighing up to 25 pounds.
The agency is bound by that statement.  As a matter of administrative notice, the claimant is not bound by the matters set forth in administrative notice.  The SSR is not law.

SSA does not have the privilege of construing the Dictionary of Occupational Titles.  The first question is whether the observation from the ruling conflicts with the DOT.   The DOT defines medium work in Appendix C:
M-Medium Work - Exerting 20 to 50 pounds of force occasionally, and/or 10 to 25 pounds of force frequently, and/or greater than negligible up to 10 pounds of force constantly to move objects. Physical Demand requirements are in excess of those for Light Work.
Not a word about standing and walking.  The definition of light work speaks to standing and walking to a significant degree but not generally six of eight hours that SSA describes in SSR 83-10.  The question is whether medium requires weightbearing approximately six hours per day or does it require more. 

Last week, we took a look at hospital cleaner, DOT 323.687-010, a medium, unskilled occupation.  I asserted that cleaners did not get to sit during the day, but did not set forth the work context report from the O*NET OnLine.  

94 
Spend Time Standing — How much does this job require standing?
80     Continually or almost continually
17     More than half the time
2     About half the time
1     Less than half the time
0    Never

81 
Spend Time Walking and Running — How much does this job require walking and running?
70     Continually or almost continually
14     More than half the time
2     About half the time
0    Less than half the time
15     Never
2 
Spend Time Sitting — How much does this job require sitting?
0    Continually or almost continually
0    More than half the time
0    About half the time
9     Less than half the time
91     Never
Run the work context report with minimum value of zero and showing all results.  

Another favorite target occupation identified by vocational experts in response to medium residual functional capacity hypothetical is Dining Room Attendant, 311.677-018.  This occupation is part of Dining Room and Cafeteria Attendants and Bartender Helpers, SOC 35-9011.  The work context report for this occupational group reports:

95 
Spend Time Standing — How much does this job require standing?
81     Continually or almost continually
19     More than half the time
0    About half the time
0    Less than half the time
0    Never
88 
Spend Time Walking and Running — How much does this job require walking and running?
76     Continually or almost continually
1     More than half the time
20     About half the time
1     Less than half the time
0    Never
11 
Spend Time Sitting — How much does this job require sitting?
0    Continually or almost continually
0    More than half the time
0    About half the time
45     Less than half the time
55     Never
This occupational group includes cafeteria attendant, a light occupation.  The O*NET does not break down less than half the time into more specific data.  This presentation confirms that most dining room attendant jobs will not permit sitting.  

One more vocational expert favorite:  kitchen helper, 318.687-010.  This medium occupation belongs to Dishwasher, SOC 35-9021.  Running the work context report, Labor reports:

97 
Spend Time Standing — How much does this job require standing?
96     Continually or almost continually
0    More than half the time
0    About half the time
4     Less than half the time
0    Never
86 
Spend Time Walking and Running — How much does this job require walking and running?
68     Continually or almost continually
18     More than half the time
7     About half the time
4     Less than half the time
4     Never
1 
Spend Time Sitting — How much does this job require sitting?
0    Continually or almost continually
0    More than half the time
0    About half the time
5     Less than half the time
95     Never
In these three occupations, the proposition that full-time work would limit standing and walking to six hours in a workday is not tenable.  

ALJ:  Any questions counsel?
Rep:  Yes. 
Rep:  VE, assume that the person cannot stand or walk in combination more than six hours per day.  
          Could that person perform the medium exertion jobs you identified today?

In some cases, the answer is an honest "no."  Sometimes, the representative will have to work a little harder.  



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