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ANNUAL ALLIANCE REPORT
THE OCCUPATIONAL SAFETY AND HEALTH ADMINISTRATION
U. S. DEPARTMENT OF LABOR
OMAHA, NE AREA OFFICE
AND
INTERNATIONAL ASSOCIATION OF BRIDGE, STRUCTURAL, ORNAMENTAL AND REINFORCING IRON WORKERS, LOCAL 21
December, 2011 - December, 2012


  1. Alliance Background

    Date Signed

    Originally on 12/20/2007; renewed on January 25, 2010; renewed on May 11, 2012.

    Overview

    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.
    • Work with other Alliance participants on specific issues and projects on Steel Erection and analysis of injury and illness trends to identify methods for preventing other injuries in the industry 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

    OSHA:

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

    Evaluation Period

    12/20/2011-12/20/2012

  2. Implementation Team Meetings
    • The alliance was due for renewal in the first quarter of FY 2012. After discussing the alliance with the Area Director, it was determined that the program needed to either be discontinued or modified to better address the lack of training being conducted at the union. This lack of training was based upon economic need in that the union did not conduct an apprenticeship course in CY 2011. A number of discussions were held with Mr. Mike Baker, Local 21, and a decision was made to incorporate unionized employer injury and illness rates into the alliance. The collected data is to be used to determine trends and then develop training for the union members to curb those trends.
    • On May 11, 2012, the alliance as re-written and was signed into effect for two years.
    • Mr. Bill Fuller, Training Coordinator for the Ironworkers, stated that the Local is again not training an apprentice class during CY 2011; 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 which led to the changes previously discussed.
    • In December of 2012, CSHO Thurlby met with Mr. Mike Baker, Business Agent for Local 21. This meeting included 8 representatives from the major unionized steel erection contractors in Nebraska. At this meeting the representatives were asked to provide their injury and illness data to the union to be forwarded to OSHA. The information is to be collected on a quarterly basis beginning in January of 2013. The items outlined in the alliance were shared with the representatives and met with favorable reviews. This was the first time in the history of this alliance that the company persons were included in the alliance activity. Prior to this meeting, the union interaction was limited to the apprentice ironworkers.
  3. Events and Products

    Training and Education

    Events:

    Unfortunately due to the decline in commercial construction activity in Nebraska, the Local 21 did not have an apprentice class during 2010, 2011 and now 2012. As of December 2012, they are planning to start an apprenticeship class in the early summer of 2013 and expect 12 to 15 new ironworkers. This will allow the early intervention training that the alliance was originally written to accomplish.

    There was not any training conducted as part of this alliance in CY 2012. This was one of the reasons the alliance shifted to an apprentice and foreman based training format. The collected injury and illness data will be used to conduct a training class for the foremen that will outline prevention methods derived from the trended data.

    Outreach and Communication

    Events:

    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. This included the alliance signing on May 11, 2012. At that ceremony, a meeting was held with Mr. Baker to discuss the training plans for the summer of 2012. Mr. Baker indicated at that time that there would not be an apprenticeship course. The next meeting was held in December 2012 as previously discussed.

  4. Results
    Type of Activity (Conference, Training, Print and Electronic Distribution, etc.)Number of Individuals Reached or Trained
    Training on Subpart R0
    TOTAL0

    These results were one of the primary reasons that the alliance was evaluated and termination was discussed. After speaking with the Union, Mr. Baker requested that we do not end the alliance based upon the favorable interaction between OSHA and the Union members. Mr. Baker points out the fact that their members would not have contacted or interacted with OSHA prior to this alliance. He stated that having a friendly face speak with them in a non-confrontational environment has allowed his constituents to be comfortable with the idea of meeting with OSHA either on a job site or in the union hall.

  5. Upcoming Milestones

    The alliance was re-written during the last year and will now include the collection of injury and illness data. That first collection is to take place in the middle of January followed again in April.

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