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Region 8 News Release: OSHA 05-1587-DEN
Wednesday, August 24, 2005
Contact: Rich Kulczewski
Phone: (303) 844-1302
BROOKINGS, S.D. -- The U.S. Labor Department's Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) has recognized the 3M Company's manufacturing site in Brookings, S.D., for excellence in employee safety and health.
The plant was designated a VPP "Star" site, the highest level of recognition that OSHA's Voluntary Protection Programs (VPP) offer, during an Aug. 18 ceremony in Brookings. A VPP Star site meets all the safety and health program elements for the VPP program, which far exceed minimum OSHA standards.
"This award validates 3M's position as a world-class leader not only in the manufacturing industry but also in the area of employee safety and health programs," said John Hermanson, OSHA deputy regional administrator in Denver. Brad Baptiste, OSHA regional VPP manager, along with Bruce Beelman, OSHA area office director in Bismarck, N.D., presented a VPP flag and plaque to the 3M staff at the ceremony.
According to Baptiste, among the most noteworthy aspects of 3M's program is the company's occupational health program. "The plant has an exceptional injury prevention program that is supplemented by a truly exemplary employee wellness system that includes on-site medical professionals, physical therapists, and health fairs," said Baptiste. "It is an impressive workplace."
VPP offers employers a unique opportunity to move beyond traditional safety programs by recognizing participants that successfully incorporate comprehensive safety and health programs into their total management systems. The VPP program is open to deserving employers in any industry.
Requirements for application to the Voluntary Protection Programs, which have more than 1,300 sites across the country, include a high degree of management support and employee involvement, high-quality worksite hazard analysis, hazard prevention and control programs and comprehensive safety and health training for all employees. Each element must be effective, in place and in operation for at least one year before applying to join the program.
For additional information on VPP in Region VIII contact Brad Baptiste at (720) 264-6555 in Denver.
Employers are responsible for providing a safe and healthful workplace for their employees. The role of the U.S. Department of Labor's Occupational Safety and Health Administration 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 http://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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