Putting yourself in an uncomfortable operating position can be a cause for poor operator technique.I've gotten into the habit of standing off to one side instead of right in line with the blade...that way I hopefully avoid a kicked back piece...it definitely helps to push both against the fence as well as forward.
Usually called "anti-kickback pawls".My saw has some spring - loaded backwards-facing "jaws" attached to that piece that sticks up right behind the blade path(can't remember what it's called)that prevent the piece from moving backwards as you feed it thru the saw.
I may be wrong but doubt it very seriously. If the day comes that an employee loses a digit or more in your shop and it is documented that you, as an employer took the safety gear off of the equipment, your employee will own your shop from that day forward. It's one thing if the employee circumvents the safeguard, it's another thing, entirely, if the employer does.We don't have safety features on any of our equipment, it just gets in the way.