Region 1 News Release: 06-15-BOS/BOS 2006-009
Wednesday, January 18, 2006
Contact: Ted Fitzgerald
Phone: (617) 565-2074
New OSHA Alliance to Benefit Haitian, Spanish and Portuguese Health Care Workers in Southeastern New England
BOSTON -- Safer and more healthful working conditions for Haitian, Spanish and Portuguese speaking health care workers in Boston, southeastern Massachusetts and Rhode Island is the goal of a new alliance among the U.S. Labor Department's Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA), the states of Massachusetts and Rhode Island and the International Medical Center for Safety and Emergency Preparedness (IMC-SEP).
OSHA alliances are part of U.S. Labor Secretary Elaine L. Chao's efforts to improve health and safety for workers through cooperative partnerships with employers, trade associations and labor. IMC-SEP is a non-profit organization, based in Hyde Park, Mass., that provides training to medical personnel. Joining in the alliance with IMC-SEP are OSHA's Braintree and Providence area offices and the safety and health consultation services of the Massachusetts Division of Occupational Safety and the Rhode Island Department of Health.
Alliance participants will develop and deliver training and education programs for Haitian, Spanish and Portuguese speaking employees about hazards encountered by health care workers. Training presented in workers' own languages will focus on ergonomics, needle sticks, bloodborne pathogens and other hazards.
"This alliance seeks to provide a multicultural group of workers with information, guidance and training that will reduce and prevent their exposure to common health care workplace hazards," said Brenda Gordon, OSHA's area director for Boston and southeastern Massachusetts.
"Presenting this information to workers in their own languages is key to equipping them with the knowledge and skills to identify and prevent workplace injuries and illnesses," said Mary Hoye, OSHA's Rhode Island area director.
The alliance was signed by Gordon and Hoye of OSHA; Dr. Mona Dorinsville-Phanor, president of IMC-SEP; Robert Prezioso, commissioner of the Massachusetts Division of Occupational Safety; and James Gamelin, project manager for the Rhode Island Department of Health, Occupational Health and Safety 21(d) Consultation Program.
OSHA has created more than 350 alliances with organizations committed to fostering safety and health in the workplace. For more information about this and other alliances in New England, call OSHA's Boston regional office at (617) 565-9860.
Employers are responsible for providing a safe and healthful workplace for their employees. OSHA's role is to assure the safety and health of America's workers by setting and enforcing standards; providing training, outreach and education; establishing partnerships; and encouraging continual improvement in workplace safety and health. For more information, visit www.osha.gov.
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