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OSHA News Release – Region 2
U.S. Department of Labor
Region 2 News Release: 05-238-NEW (osha 05-015)
Date: Feb. 10, 2005
Contacts: Leni Uddyback-Fortson, DOL, (215) 861-5102
Kevin McElroy, SCC, 609-943-4307
Robert Corrales, NJDOLWD, 609-292-0306
to Protect Employees from Workplace Hazards
TRENTON, N.J. -- Workers on New Jersey school construction sites will be safer thanks to an alliance formed today by the U.S. Department of Labor's Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA), the New Jersey School Construction Corporation (NJSCC), and the New Jersey Department of Labor and Workforce Development (NJDOLWD).
"This alliance is an example of Secretary Elaine L. Chao's commitment to find cooperative ways to improve health and safety for all workers," said Patricia Clark, regional administrator for OSHA in New York. "We must all work together for a common goal - reducing injuries and health hazards at school construction sites."
The alliance will help foster a culture of safety and health with contractors in the NJSCC, with a special focus on industry hazards common to school construction. OSHA and the NJSCC will develop programs to educate workers on hazards such as air contaminants, electrical accidents and falls. OSHA will provide the NJSCC with information, guidance and access to training resources that will help protect employees' safety and health.
"Safety at school construction sites is of critical importance to the work we have been mandated to do throughout the state. This agreement with OSHA and the Department of Labor will enhance our ability to protect not only our building trades workers while they go about their jobs effectively and efficiently, but also students and teachers," said John F. Spencer, chief executive officer of NJSCC, which oversees New Jersey's unprecedented $8.6 billion school construction program.
The Consultation Division of the NJDOLWD will also assist with training and on-site consultation activities. "We have an obligation to ensure that every worker is able to perform their job in a safe working environment," said Thomas Carver, acting commissioner of the New Jersey Department of Labor and Workforce Development. "As it reaches every corner of New Jersey, the school construction project is one of the largest initiatives undertaken by the state in decades. That is why it is so important that the state and the federal government have come together today to provide unprecedented resources to protect our workers on this enormous project."
The agreement will remain in effect for two years. Representatives from each organization will create an implementation strategy and then convene at least three times per year to track and share information on activities. All four OSHA area offices in New Jersey - Avenel, Hasbrouck Heights, Marlton and Parsippany-are participating.
The OSHA Alliance Program was created in March 2002 to enable organizations committed to safety and health to work with OSHA to prevent injuries, illnesses and fatalities in the workplace. Groups that may form an alliance with OSHA include employers, labor unions, trade or professional groups, educational institutions and government agencies.
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.
U.S. Labor Department releases are accessible on the Internet at www.dol.gov. The information in this news release will be made available in alternate format upon request (large print, Braille, audio tape or disc) from the COAST office. Please specify which news release when placing your request at (202) 693-7765 or TTY (202) 693-7755. The U.S. Department of Labor is committed to providing America's employers and employees with easy access to understandable information on how to comply with its laws and regulations. For more information, please visit www.dol.gov/compliance.
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