The Legislature finds that the safety and health of public employees in the workplace is of primary public concern. Personal injuries and illnesses arising out of work situations result not only in wage loss and increased medical expenses for public employees, but also in decreased productivity and increased workers' compensation expenses for public employers. The Legislature therefore declares:
(a) That it is the policy of this state to ensure that all public employees be provided with safe and healthful work environments free from recognized and avoidable hazards;
(b) That it is the responsibility of the state to promulgate standards for the protection of the health and safety of its public workforce; and
(c) That it is in the public interest for public employers and public employees to join in a cooperative effort to enforce these standards.