Numerous groups will convene during the annual North American Occupational Safety and Health (NAOSH) Week from May 2-8, 2010 and Occupational Safety and Health Professional (OSHP) Day on May 5 to raise awareness of the importance of being safe at work. The American Society of Safety Engineers (ASSE) joined with the Canadian Society of Safety Engineering (CSSE) in 2002 to raise public awareness of occupational safety, health and the environment in North America during this weeklong event.
The NAOSH 2010 theme is “Mission NAOSH 2010: Safe Workplaces.” In addition to activities scheduled, NAOSH week events and educational programs are scheduled for Washington, DC, May 2-3, along with a roadway safety event May 5 in Portland, OR, with ASSE members and state officials.
The NAOSH kick off events in D.C. will be held at the U.S. Department of Labor (DOL), the U.S. Capitol, the Smithsonian, and the Washington National Zoo. The events will feature panel discussions on new industry workplace safety and health efforts as well as recognizing the winners of the Eighth Annual ASSE kids’ “safety on the job” international poster contest for children aged 5-14.
ISSA, the Worldwide Cleaning Association is one of the partners in the events. Says ISSA director of environmental services, Bill Balek, “NAOSH week is another tool we use to educate people on the positive benefits of protecting people, property and the environment and sharing best practices among our members and their employees all in an effort to continue to enhance workplace safety worldwide.”
While millions of people go to work each day and leave there injury and illness free, due in part to the efforts of occupational safety, health and environmental professionals, still close to 6,000 people in the U.S. die each year from on the job injuries and 4.4 million more suffer illnesses. NAOSH helps ISSA reach millions of people and tens of thousands of businesses on the importance and long-term benefits of workplace safety.
“Today’s economic downturn is tough for everyone and some businesses believe they can save funds by cutting back in safety; that’s not a good move from a business perspective,” said ASSE President, C. Christopher Patton, CSP. “Businesses have spent about US$170 billion a year on costs associated with occupational injuries and health care, and about $1 billion every week on injured employees and their medical providers—costs that take away from company profits, research and growth, costs that continue to go up as cuts in safety are being made. Indirect tangible costs of injuries may be as much as 20 times the direct costs, including costs from accident investigation, low employee morale, retraining workers and repairs and production delays while the intangible costs of losing a loved one, a friend, and a co-worker go beyond a price tag.”
ISSA and OSHA created an alliance since August 2005. In conjunction with this alliance, ISSA has created a Web network dedicated to the protection of the health and safety of workers in the cleaning industry. The ISSA Safety and Health Portal offers nine topic pages focusing on: Bloodborne Pathogens; Cleaning Chemicals in the Workplace (Hazard Communication); Injury & Illness Recordkeeping; OSHA Assistance for Cleaning Industry; Personal Protective Equipment (PPE); Slips, Trips, and Falls in the Workplace; and the latest additions dedicated to Small Business Resources, Spanish Resources, and Warehouse Safety. Addendum, OSHA Alliance Participants
Supporters of NAOSH Week include:
- Airline Group, which includes American Airlines, Air Transport Association of America, Inc., Continental Airlines, JetBlue Airways, Midwest Airlines, US Airways, and United Airlines
- American Biological Safety Association (ABSA)
- American Heart Association (AHA)
- American Industrial Hygiene Association (AIHA)
- American Red Cross
- Association of Occupational Health Professionals (AOHP)
- Independent Electrical Contractors, Inc. (IEC)
- Independent Lubricant Manufacturers Association (ILMA)
- ISSA: The Worldwide Cleaning Industry Association
- National Hearing Conservation Association (NHCA)
- National Safety Council (NSC)
- National Telecommunications Safety Panel (NTSP)
- PLANET: Professional Landcare Network
- Associated General Contractors of America (AGC)
- National Asphalt Pavement Association (NAPA),
- National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH)
- National Fire Protection Association (NFPA)
- Scaffold Industry Association, Inc. (SIA)
- Sealant Waterproofing and Restoration Institute (SWR)
- Society for Chemical Hazard Communication (SCHC)
- URS Corp.
For a full list of partners, visit the ASSE Web site.