TRADE NEWS RELEASE
March 5, 2002
Contact: Susan Hall Fleming
Phone: (202) 693-1999
OSHA, HISPANIC CONTRACTORS FORM ALLIANCE
Goal to Reduce Construction Deaths Among Spanish-Speaking Workers
WASHINGTON -- OSHA and the Hispanic Contractors of America, Inc. (HCA) today signed an agreement to promote safe and healthful working conditions for Hispanic construction workers through effective safety and health training and increased access to safety and health resources in Spanish.
"This alliance will greatly expand OSHA's reach in our effort to provide safety and health information and training to Spanish-speaking workers and employers," said OSHA Administrator John L. Henshaw. "We wanted to join with others who share our concern and are committed to reducing injuries and illnesses among Hispanic workers. I am delighted that HCA wants to work with us."
Under the alliance, HCA and OSHA will:
Identify existing safety and health resources available for Spanish speakers and stimulate the development of additional publications and audio-visual products.
Jointly disseminate safety and health information through conferences, events, community-based activities and electronic media.
Work with community and faith-based organizations and other leadership groups to build safety and health awareness within the Hispanic community.
Encourage bilingual individuals in construction to take OSHA's train-the-trainer class so they can teach the 10-hour and 30-hour construction safety and health outreach courses in Spanish.
Promote and encourage HCA members to participate in OSHA cooperative programs such as compliance assistance, consultation and mentoring.
OSHA and HCA are forming a joint steering committee to implement the alliance. The steering committee will draft procedures for the alliance and develop methods to track, analyze, evaluate and share information on the alliance's activities.
Jerry Adriano, executive director of HCA, and John L. Henshaw, OSHA administrator, signed the alliance agreement. A copy of the alliance agreement follows.
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AGREEMENT TO ESTABLISH AN ALLIANCE
THE OCCUPATIONAL SAFETY AND HEALTH ADMINISTRATION
U.S. DEPARTMENT OF LABOR
THE HISPANIC CONTRACTORS OF AMERICA, INC.
The number of Hispanic construction workers killed by work-related accidents is increasing in the United States. To help reverse this trend, the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) and the Hispanic Contractors of America, Inc. (HCA) agree to establish an Alliance to promote safe and healthful working conditions for Hispanic construction workers by:
Helping Hispanic construction contractors (employers) improve knowledge of safe and healthful work practices and achieve compliance with safety and health standards and other regulations promulgated pursuant to the Occupational Safety and Health Act of 1970; and
Increasing access to safety and health training resources and related materials in Spanish for construction employers and employees who are not fluent in the English language.
Both organizations acknowledge that when English is not the first language of construction employers and/or employees in the United States, access to training and information about safe and healthful work practices may be limited compared to native English-speakers. To bridge this language barrier and other potential gaps in access, the OSHA and HCA agree to work together to:
Identify existing resources and stimulate the development of new resources for Hispanic construction employers and employees, such as safety and health publications, audio-visual and other reference materials that are in Spanish.
Seek opportunities to jointly exhibit and disseminate safety and health information at conferences, events, community-based activities, and through electronic mediums.
Work with community and faith based organizations and other leadership groups to build safety and health awareness within the Hispanic community.
Encourage bilingual individuals in construction to take the OSHA train-the-trainer course on occupational safety and health standards for the construction industry, so they qualify to teach Hispanic workers the OSHA 10- and 30-hour construction safety and health outreach courses in Spanish.
Promote and encourage participation in the OSHA cooperative programs (e.g. compliance assistance, consultation and mentoring) among HCA members.
Provide an opportunity for State Plan States to become involved in all efforts to achieve the goals of this agreement.
Participating members of the organizations will meet to facilitate the goals of the Alliance. These members will include representatives from Federal OSHA's Directorate of Federal State Operations, the Directorate of Construction, State Plan OSHA, and Consultation Projects. The participating members will draft a document formalizing the Alliance procedures, and establish methods to track, analyze, and evaluate the Alliance activities.
Occupational Safety and
John Henshaw Date
Hispanic Contractors of
Jerry Adriano Date