News | October 16, 1998

OSHA Awards $4M In Training Grants To Protect Workers

The Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) has awarded $3.984 million in grants to 37 organizations so that they can develop training programs that improve workplace safety and health. The awards, known as the Susan Harwood Training Grants, are made to safety and health organizations, employer associations, educational institutions and other nonprofit organizations.

"These grants are important because they provide much-needed funding to develop employee safety and health training programs," said Secretary of Labor, Alexis M. Herman. OSHA requires Harwood grantees to develop training programs, recruit workers and employers for the training, conduct the training, and perform follow-up research to determine the training's effect on reducing workplace injuries and illnesses.

"The Harwood grants," said Charles N. Jeffress, assistant secretary of labor for occupational safety and health, "illustrate OSHA's commitment to protect workers. This year's grantees will focus on such important areas as ergonomics, construction, silica in general industry, food processing, scaffolding, and workplace violence."

Harwood, who died in 1996, was an OSHA employee for 17 years and the former director of the Office of Risk Assessment in the agency's Health Standards Directorate. Among the standards that Harwood worked on during her career were tuberculosis, bloodborne pathogens, cotton dust, benzene, formaldehyde, asbestos and lead in construction.

OSHA expects to issue in early 1999 another Request for Proposal for a new group of training grants. Recipients and their subject areas include:

AFSCME Training and Education Institute, Washington, DC $149,000
The American Federation of State, County and Municipal Employees will educate 480 members involved with highway construction and repair about hazards in highway work zones. After the training, the participants will be able to train other union members. (Contact: Gerald McEntee)

Construction Safety Council, Hillside, IL $129,000
The council will use materials developed under a grant from the National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health to train 922 construction workers and managers at risk of electrocution from power line contact. (Contact: Thomas Broderick)

Laborers-AGC Education and Training Fund, Pomfret Center, CT $117,000
The program will address lead and silica hazards in bridge repair. It will train 240 trainers, who will then train other members of the union. Training materials also will be developed and distributed to other affiliated unions. (Contact: James Warren)

Marshall University Research Corporation, Huntington, WV $118,000
Marshall University, in partnership with the International Brotherhood of Painters, will update lead-based paint training materials to include silica hazards and train 2,300 instructors to deliver a 10-hour course about lead and silica to members of the union. (Contact: Dr. James Hooper)

Montana Operating Engineers and AGC Joint Training Trust, E. Helena, MT $24,000
The program will develop training materials and warning decals about overhead power line contact hazards. It will train 292 participants and assist them in conducting training at construction worksites to union members and construction contractors. (Contact: Charles Cashell)

National Joint Apprenticeship Training Committee, Upper Marlboro, MD $138,000
The grantee, which is the training arm of the International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers and the National Electrical Contractors Association will develop and conduct a program that teaches 300 trainers to deliver a course covering electrical hazards at construction sites, especially with those that have contact with overhead power lines. (Contact: A.J. Pearson)

National Safety Council, Itasca, IL $143,000
The council will develop and deliver a program that instructs 360 trainers on how to conduct safety sessions that address the control and abatement of hazards at highway construction worksites. (Contact: Alan McMillan)

For Food Processing:

North Carolina Occupational Safety and Health Project, Durham, NC $82,000
The grantee will conduct training about ergonomic, chemical and machine hazards for workers in the meat and poultry industries. The program will train 1,030 people in English and Spanish. (Contact: Tom O'Connor)

Safety and Health Council of Greater Omaha, Omaha, NE $73,000
The grantee will train workers in the meat industry about ergonomics, hazard communication, emergency response, machine guarding and lockout/tagout. The program will train 1,100 workers in English and Spanish. (Contact: Kay Farrell)

United Food and Commercial Workers International Union, Washington, DC $110,000
The union will train 660 workers, employers and members of labor-management committees. The training will cover hazards, including machinery, electricity, walking/working surfaces, chemical hazards and noise in the meat and poultry processing industries. Informational materials will be produced in English and Spanish. (Contact: Marvin Hrubes)

University of Alabama, Tuscaloosa, AL $80,000
The university will train 250 Spanish-speaking supervisors in poultry processing plants about hazards and hazard abatement. (Contact: Robert Wells)

For Logging:

Eastern Washington University, Cheney, WA $108,000
The university will work with logging associations to recruit 1,204 loggers for safety training that will be conducted at logging sites and will emphasize OSHA standards. The program will also conduct train-the-trainer sessions and assist logging firms to establish safety and health programs. (No contact identified)

Lumberjack Resource Conservation and Development Council, Tomahawk, WI $140,000
The program will use the Forest Industry Safety Training Alliance (FISTA) to train 2,800 workers at logging sites about such topics as chainsaw safety and mechanized logging operations. FISTA will also conduct classroom sessions focusing on OSHA standards. (Contact: Edward Huettl)

Northern Vermont Resource Conservation and Development Council, Berlin, VT $128,000
The grantee will provide administrative direction to the Yankee Forest Safety Network, which includes forestry and logging safety organizations. The network will train 150 loggers and managers as well as conduct safety visits at their worksites to help improve safety practices. (Contact: Arthur Webb)

For Worker Outreach:

Massachusetts Coalition for Occupational Safety and Health, Boston, MA $468,000
The grantee will administer a coalition of 18 committees for occupational safety and health (COSH). Each COSH will instruct trainers, who will then train 3,608 temporary workers, immigrants and teenagers about worker rights and responsibilities under the occupational Safety and Health Act, including whistleblower protections. (Contact: Lauren Sheridan)

Oil Chemical and Atomic Workers International Union, Lakewood, CO $151,000
The union will develop curriculum covering worker rights under the Occupational Safety and Health Act and whistleblower protections administered by OSHA. It will instruct trainers who will then train local union members. The training will be supplemented by a fact sheet distributed to all members. (Contact: Robert Wages)

Regents of the University of California, Berkeley, CA $120,000
The University of California at Berkeley's Labor Occupational Health Program (LOHP) will develop curriculum and materials to inform youth about their OSHA rights, responsibilities, and whistleblower protections. LOHP will work with youth agencies funded by the Job Training and Partnership Act to train trainers who will incorporate the training and materials into ongoing youth job programs administered by their agencies. (Contact: Jyl Baldwin)

United Brotherhood of Carpenters Health & Safety Fund of North America, Washington, DC $127,000
The union will train members in its industrial councils who are employed in the forest product industries. The training will cover OSHA rights and worker protections administered by OSHA. Training will be given to officers and others from local unions who can pass the information on to other members. The training will become part of the union's ongoing curriculum. (Contact: G. Ray Medlin, Sr.)

For the Silica in General Industry:

Pennsylvania Foundrymen's Association, Plymouth Meeting, PA $99,000
The association will train foundry managers to teach workers about silica dust protection. It will also develop a manual to show foundries how to measure silica dust concentrations. (Contact: Christopher Moyer)

Research Foundation of the State University of New York, Amherst, NY $111,000
The State University of New York at Buffalo will train workers and managers at small businesses to recognize silica hazards and to protect workers exposed to the hazards. Classes will include hands-on training using respirators and monitoring equipment. (Contact: Dr. Charles Kaars)

Grant Renewals For Ergonomics:

California Labor Federation, AFL-CIO, San Francisco, CA $103,000
The grantee will train 20 union members as ergonomics trainers. (Contact : Art Pulaski)

Communications Workers of America, Washington, DC $145,000
This is a renewal grant that trains trainers to train video display terminal operators about ergonomic awareness. (Contact: M.E. Nichols)

Research Foundation of the City University of New York, NY $117,000
Hunter College will continue its project with the United Paperworkers International Union to train selected paperworkers as ergonomics trainers. (Contact: Robert Buckley)

Union of Needletrades, Industrial and Textile Employees, New York, NY $120,000
This on-going project trains workers as trainers so they can provide information about ergonomics to other workers in their locals. (Contact: Susan Cowell)

United Food and Commercial Workers International Union, Washington, DC $34,000
The union will continue to train workers and employers as ergonomics resources in their workplaces, primarily in meatpacking and processing plants, and nursing homes. (Contact: Marvin Hrubes)

University of California, Los Angeles Los Angeles, CA $75,000
The grantee will continue to train meat and vegetable food processing workers about ergonomics hazards. (Contact: Sharon Lam)

University of Connecticut Health Center, Farmington, CT $101,000
The university will work with coalitions for occupational safety and health in four New England states to continue to conduct ergonomic awareness training for workers. (Contact: Leonard Paplauskas)

Western New York Council on Occupational Safety and Health, Buffalo, NY $70,000
The grantee will continue to work with four safety and health organizations to conduct ergonomics training for members of the International Brotherhood of Teamsters who work in grocery warehouses. (Contact: Roger Cook)

For Scaffolding:

International Masonry Institute, Cascade, MD $133,000
The grantee will continue to conduct a train-the-trainer course on scaffold safety and fall protection for apprentice and journeyworker scaffold users. (Contact: Joan Calambokidis)

Laborers-AGC Education and Training Fund, Pomfret Center, CT $137,000
The grantee has developed an 8-hour scaffold user training program. The program is being expanded to cover additional areas, and the grantee is developing a CD-ROM program on scaffold standards. (Contact: James Warren)

National Ironworkers And Employers Apprenticeship Training and Journeyman Upgrading Fund, Washington, DC $72,000
The grantee will continue to train instructors from local unions and provide them with training materials to train other members as scaffold users. (Contact: Raymond Robertson)

United Brotherhood of Carpenters Health and Safety Fund of North America, Washington, DC $139,000
The grantee will continue to conduct train-the-trainer courses for the Carpenters Union and other building trades unions. (Contact: G. Ray Medlin, Sr.)

For Small Business:

Bishop State Community College, Mobile, AL $75,000
The grantee will continue to recruit small businesses and train managers about establishing safety and health programs. (Contact: Dr. Yvonne Kennedy)

International Union, United Automobile, Aerospace and Agricultural Implement Workers of America, Detroit, MI $125,000
The union will continue to provide safety and health training programs for labor-management audiences. The training includes basic OSHA requirements, site-specific hazards, and train-the-trainer components. (Contact: Dr. Franklin Mirer)

Massachusetts Coalition for Occupational Safety and Health, Boston, MA $75,000
The grantee will continue to coordinate a project that provides training to union representatives from small firms, enabling them to play effective roles in working with management to develop and sustain workplace safety and health programs. (Contact: Lauren Sheridan)

National Safety Council, Itasca, IL $95,000
The grantee will continue to conduct one-day training sessions for small business construction contractors. (Contact: Alan McMillan)

Printing Industries Association of the Heartland, Kansas City, MO $91,000
The grantee will provide safety and health training for workers from member firms, assist firms to implement workplace safety and health programs, and provide employers with train-the-trainer programs. (Contact: A. James Oldebeken)

University of Maine, Orono, ME $80,000
The University's Bureau of Labor Education will continue to provide safety and health training to workers and employers from small construction firms, primarily those working as subcontractors to paper mills. (Contact: Dr. Paul Uttormark)

West Virginia University Research Corporation, Morgantown, WV $59,000
The grantee will continue to train employers and workers from small construction companies as safety and health leaders. (Contact: William Reeves)

Wyoming-Montana Safety Council, Cheyenne, WY $75,000
The grantee, in partnership with the Colorado Safety Association, will conduct training sessions that target specific safety and health hazards faced by small businesses. It will also conduct safety program audits. (Contact: Stephen Chasson)

York Area Labor-Management Council, York, PA $85,000
The grantee will offer two-hour seminars on specific safety and health topics that are of interest to small businesses. It also will offer 10-hour programs on OSHA standards, and maintains a lending library of safety and health videos. (Contact: Richard Boyd)

Covering Workplace Violence:

Regents of the University of California, Berkeley, CA $120,000
The University's Labor Occupational Health Program will conduct train-the-trainer courses that cover workplace violence prevention techniques for employers and unions. (Contact: Jyl Baldwin)

United Food and Commercial Workers International Union, Washington, DC $40,000
The grantee has developed a program on workplace violence and is training representatives from locals the cover retail food stores and other retail establishments. The union will produce a videotape and distribute copies to all affected locals. (Contact: Marvin Hrubes)