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The Occupational Safety and Health Administration
U.S. Department of Labor
Omaha Area Office
The Microbusiness Training and Development Center
Juan Diego Center
Catholic Charities of Omaha
March 19, 2009 – March 19, 2010

  1. Alliance Background

    Date Signed:

    March 19, 2009

    Overview: Catholic Charities serves and advocates for Omaha’s voiceless, lost, hungry, addicted, abused and forgotten people through their many programs. The Microbusiness Training and Development Center offers a wide range of services, tailored to help Latino entrepreneurs and small business owners. The Program provides them with the knowledge, expertise, and tools to write business plans, get loans, utilize technology, improve operations, develop budgets, build relationships and ultimately live their dream. Classes are offered in Spanish and English.

    This Alliance is intended, through a collaborative relationship, to foster safer and more healthful workplaces, by providing Microbusiness Training and Development Center faculty, students, and others with information, guidance, and access to training resources that will help them protect the health and safety of immigrant employees, particularly Latinos working in Nebraska.

    Implementation Team Members

    Karen Mavropoulos
    Microbusiness Training and Development Center – Executive Director
    Georgina Nunez
    Microbusiness Training and Development Center- Instructor
    Doug Fletcher
    Omaha Area Office – CAS
  2. Implementation Team Meetings

    Although this Alliance has only been in place for one year, the OAO and the Juan Diego Center (JDC) have worked together for over five years on training for students of the Microbusiness Center. Training is conducted on a quarterly basis, as a new class of students enters and works through the Program. Program Instructor, Georgina Nunez contacts the OAO representative each quarter to schedule a class presentation.

    On May 21, 2009, OAO representative met with Ms. Mavropoulos to discuss the possibility of doing additional training to members of the Latino community, specifically those involved in Residential Construction.

  3. Activities and Products

    Evaluation Period

    March 19, 2009 – March 19, 2010

    Training and Education

    • Events

      5/21/09 Microbusiness class presentation #1
      8/11/09 Microbusiness class presentation #2
      11/19/09 Microbusiness class presentation #3
      2/18/10 Microbusiness class presentation #4

      Class presentations consist of an overview of OSHA and the OSH Act, the rights and responsibilities of a small business owner, and the rights of employees. In addition to being entrepreneurs, the students are often employees of local companies. A great deal of time is spent on the rights of employees, including a discussion of how to file complaints. Training has been provided in Spanish in the past, when a bi-lingual compliance officer was on staff. For approximately two years, the office lacked that capability so training was performed in English. Recently, another bi-lingual compliance officer has been hired and accompanied the CAS to the 2/18/10 training program.

      8/13/09 Residential construction safety training

      This special session was coordinated with the JDC, in order to address the many hazards of residential construction with members of the local Latino community. The JDC marketed the opportunity to its past students and within the community. An OSHA representative conducted the training, including a discussion of fall protection, ladder safety, and basic electrical safety.

  4. Results
    Type of Activity (Conference, Training, Print and Electronic Distribution, etc.) Number of Individuals Reached or Trained
    Microbusiness training Session #117
    Microbusiness training Session #215
    Microbusiness training Session #322
    Microbusiness training Session #416
    Residential Safety training6
  5. Upcoming Milestones

    The intention is to continue providing (4) sessions per year to the students of the Microbusiness Program.

    We have also discussed the possibility of providing one construction-specific training class and one general industry-specific training class, distinct from the Program classes, at least once per year. This would afford those students that are interested in obtaining more information about their specific industries, greater access to the information.

Report Prepared by: Doug Fletcher, Compliance Assistance Specialist, Omaha Area Office

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