Alliance -- An OSHA Cooperative Program<< Back to Region VII

  1. Alliance Background

    Date Signed:

    12/20/2007; renewed on 1/25/2010


    This Alliance was signed to provide Local 21 members and others with information, guidance, and access to training resources that will help them protect employees' health and safety, particularly in reducing and preventing exposure to fall hazards associated with the steel erection industry. The agreement also focuses on a number of goals including:

    Training and education:

    • Work with OSHA to provide expertise to develop training and education programs for Apprentice Iron Workers regarding fall hazards in the steel erection industry, and to provide expertise in communicating such information to employers and employees in the industry.
    • Work with OSHA to provide expertise to develop workplace safety and health curricula on 29 CFR 1926 Subpart R. This will be part of the Apprentice Iron Workers training program as part of their advancement to Journeyman.
    Outreach and communication:

    • Work with OSHA to provide expertise in developing information on the recognition and prevention of workplace hazards, and to provide expertise in developing ways of communicating such information (e.g. print and electronic media, electronic assistance tools and OSHA's and the Local 21 Web sites) to employers and employees in the industry.
    • Speak, exhibit, or appear at OSHA's or Local 21 conferences, local meetings, or other Local 21 events.
    • Work with other Alliance participants on specific issues and projects on Steel Erection that are addressed and developed through the Alliance Program.
    Implementation Team Members

    • Michael Baker Business Manager, Financial Secretary- Treasurer International Association of Bridge, Structural, Ornamental, and Reinforcing Iron Workers, Local 21

    • Matthew Thurlby Compliance Safety and Health Officer OSHA—Omaha Area Office
    Evaluation Period


  2. Implementation Team Meetings

    • Two meetings were held with the Ironworkers during this calendar year to discuss the direction of the alliance and possible improvements. Mr. Bill Fuller, Training Coordinator for the Ironworkers, stated that the Local is not training an apprentice class during CY 2010; a decision that affects the training component of the alliance. Due to the reduction in construction in Nebraska, the Ironworkers have not been able to field much of their workforce. This necessitated re-thinking the methods of implementing this alliance.
    • In December of 2011, CSHO Thurlby met with Mr. Mike Baker, Business Agent for Local 21. A discussion was held regarding the direction of the alliance and whether or not we would pursue extending the agreement. It was decided that an extension is worthwhile and that modifications would be required to ensure that a viable product with outcome measures could be developed. As of January 3, 2012, discussions on renewing the alliance are ongoing.

  3. Events and Products

    Training and Education


    Unfortunately due to the decline in commercial construction activity in Nebraska, the Local 21 did not have an apprentice class during 2010 and 2011. As of January 3, 2012, they are planning to start an apprenticeship class in the early summer and expect 15 new ironworkers. This will allow the early intervention training that the alliance was originally written to accomplish.

    In February of 2011, CSHO held a class at the union hall for 3rd year apprentice ironworkers (14 persons) on subpart R and the new requirements for personnel involved in Rigging operations based upon Subparts CC and DD (Crane operations).

    Outreach and Communication


    Throughout the course of the year, Mr. Baker was contacted by the Omaha Area Office for status updates as well as any general questions that may have been brought forward by their membership. Additionally, employers that work with the Union have also contacted the office for guidance on the changes to the crane standard and how that affects ironworkers involved in rigging. This type of interaction would not have occurred prior to the alliance due to the confrontational nature of the relationship that used to exist between the Union and OSHA. This alliance, as stated by Mr. Baker, has opened the eyes of many of the general membership as to the role that OSHA plays in their lives.

    In April of 2011, the Area Director met with Mr. Baker to discuss Worker Memorial Day. The Ironworkers were one of the sponsors of the event and discussed the Area Directors role in the event. Ms. Winingham (Omaha Area Director) spoke at the events in both Omaha and Lincoln commemorating the lives of Nebraska workers that had passed away on the job.

  4. Results

  5. Type of Activity (Conference, Training, Print and Electronic Distribution, etc.)

    Number of Individuals Reached or Trained

    Training on Subpart R




  6. Upcoming Milestones

  7. The alliance is under review and re-writing as of this report. The original alliance was written with only training as the purpose. The re-write will focus on both training and evaluation of accident data for participating Union ironworker companies in Nebraska. The data will be used to evaluate the needs of the general membership regarding training and education as well as accident prevention techniques for the employers (there are 9 Union employers in this area). The alliance is being reworked during the month of January 2012 with a signing goal of January 27, 2012.