Going PRO Campaign Visits Traverse City

June 17, 2019  David LydenJeff Blakeman

Michigan’s Going PRO campaign made a stop in northern Michigan on Monday to encourage people to consider careers in the skilled trades.

The campaign launched last month to fill what’s expected to be a major statewide talent shortage in the trades.

They’re hoping to get more people, including high school students to look at these careers.

The state of Michigan needs skilled trades workers. The state estimates they’ll need to fill 545,000 jobs by the year 2026, and they’re using the Going PRO campaign to get started.

“This is really a campaign to help influence students, parents other individuals in their lives to really showcase the importance of professional trades in our economy,” said Stephanie Beckhorn, Acting Director of Talent and Economic Development.

The campaign encourages high school students to start exploring these careers before they leave high school. That’s just what Nathan Keech from Traverse City did and is already employed as a CNC operator at Clark Manufacturing.

“As a second year student it was really awesome because it didn’t even feel like school. I would just go in and have a good time, just doing what I really love and it was a lot of fun actually. A lot of it’s really satisfying. Just the way the chips fly off the parts and the satisfaction after you’ve done it that you’ve made this out of a raw chunk of metal, it’s something that can be used,” said Keech.

The Going PRO campaign is also connecting people with job openings. They say many of these jobs come with an average salary of $54,000 a year.

“Our employers are counting on it. They need to fill these jobs to stay in Michigan, to grow in Michigan, to expand in Michigan,” said Beckhorn.

A message echoed by northern Michigan companies.

“Unfortunately there are very few people that have the training we need in injection molding. It’s really the future of our industry, and our company to have skilled workers,” said Maree Mulvoy of M R Products.

For more information on Going PRO, click here.


Emergency Preparedness and Response

Natural disasters can create a variety of hazards for workers. Preparing for an emergency plays a vital role in ensuring that employers and workers have the necessary equipment, know where to go, and know how to stay safe when an emergency occurs. OSHA’s Emergency Preparedness and Response page provides information on how to prepare and train for emergencies and the hazards to be aware of during cleanup and recovery operations.

What to expect when OSHA is inspecting

Former OSHA compliance officers offer advice

Key points

  • An inspection usually includes an opening conference, walkthrough, employee interviews and a closing conference.
  • Employer attitude, organization and good housekeeping all can make a positive impression, experts say.
  • In addition to ensuring safety programs and training are in place, employers should make sure these things are documented.

Read >>

Trade Release

U.S. Department of Labor’s OSHA Issues Rule to Revise Requirements in Safety and Health Standards

U.S. Department of Labor
Occupational Safety and Health Administration
Office of Communications
Washington, D.C.
For Immediate Release
May 13, 2019
Contact: Office of Communications
Phone: 202-693-1999

WASHINGTON, DC – The Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) has issued a final rule that revises 14 provisions in the recordkeeping, general industry, maritime, and construction standards that may be confusing, outdated, or unnecessary. The revisions are expected to increase understanding and compliance with the provisions, improve employee safety and health, and save employers an estimated $6.1 million per year.

OSHA proposed the changes in October 2016. This is the fourth final rule under OSHA’s Standards Improvement Project, which began in 1995 in response to a Presidential memorandum to improve government regulations. Other revisions were issued in 1998, 2005, and 2011.

Under the Occupational Safety and Health Act of 1970, employers are responsible for providing safe and healthful workplaces for their employees. OSHA’s role is to help ensure these conditions for America’s working men and women by setting and enforcing standards, and providing training, education and assistance. For more information, visit www.osha.gov.

U.S. Department of Labor, Workplace Safety Organizations Announce 6th Annual National Fall Prevention Safety Stand-Down

U.S. Department of Labor
Occupational Safety and Health Administration
Office of Communications
Washington, D.C.
For Immediate Release
April 22, 2019
Contact: Office of Communications
Phone: 202-693-1999

WASHINGTON, DC – The U.S. Department of Labor’s Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) is joining with occupational safety organizations for the 6th annual National Fall Prevention Safety Stand-Down, May 6-10, 2019. The week-long event will focus attention on preventing falls in construction, the leading cause of fatalities in the industry. 

The national stand-down encourages employers and workers to pause voluntarily during the workday for safety demonstrations, training in hazard recognition and fall prevention, and talks about hazards, protective methods, and the company’s safety policies, goals and expectations.

“Falls can be prevented when employers train and educate workers about these hazards properly and provide appropriate protection,” said Acting Assistant Secretary of Labor for Occupational Safety and Health Loren Sweatt. “This should be a priority during the first week of May and must be a priority every day. OSHA has tools readily available for employers and workers to address the prevention of fall hazards.”

OSHA anticipates thousands of work sites and millions of workers to observe the stand down worldwide in 2019. To help guide their efforts, the Agency’s fall prevention webpage provides information on how to conduct a successful event, and educational resources in English and Spanish, including:

  • A series of fall safety videos that demonstrate how to prevent fall hazards from floor openings, skylights, fixed scaffolds, bridge decking, reroofing, and leading edge work.
  • OSHA’s Fall Prevention Training Guide that provides a lesson plan for employers, including several Toolbox Talks.
  • Fact sheets on ladders and scaffolding that describe the safe use of these types of equipment while performing construction activities.
  • A brief video, 5 Ways to Prevent Workplace Falls, encourages employers to develop a fall prevention plan, and to provide workers with fall protection and training.

Employers are encouraged to provide feedback after their events, and to obtain a personalized certificate of participation.

The national safety stand-down is part of OSHA’s fall prevention campaign, and was developed in partnership with the National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health, National Occupational Research Agenda, and The Center for Construction Research and Training (CPWR). To learn more about preventing falls in construction, visit OSHA’s Fall Prevention Campaign page

Under the Occupational Safety and Health Act of 1970, employers are responsible for providing safe and healthful workplaces for their employees. OSHA’s role is to help ensure these conditions for America’s working men and women by setting and enforcing standards, and providing training, education and assistance. For more information, visit www.osha.gov.

Regulatory Roundup: OSHA inspections, NSC housekeeping tips and distracted driving webinar

Regulatory Roundup is a weekly compilation of employee wellness and safety news. You can read the full article by clicking the titles below.

OSHA expects to increase inspections

During a recent congressional appropriations hearing, Secretary of Labor Alexander Acosta explained that he expects the number of inspections to increase this year when Certified Safety and Health Official (CSHO) new hires complete their training. Acosta also pointed out that despite the attrition of agency staff, the amount of inspections in 2018 remained greater than 2016 and that fatalities and injuries both decreased from 2016 to 2017.

The National Safety Council (NSC)

NSC provides housekeeping tips

Housekeeping is crucial to preventing slips, trips and falls, eliminating fire hazards and reducing the chance of falling objects. The NSC has a five-minute safety talk document that provides tips for housekeeping practices in the workplace. The document is available in English and Spanish.

NSC hosts distracted driving webinar

The NSC will be hosting a webinar on April 23 to continue Distracted Driving Awareness Month. The 90-minute presentation will highlight risks of distracted driving and what companies are doing to help mitigate those risks.

Studies, resources, trends, news

Construction fall fatalities remain highest among all industries

Construction falls consistently account for one-third of on-the-job deaths in the construction industry. Seven years ago, several organizations and administrations launched a campaign to educate those in the industry on how to prevent falls. This year’s National Stand-Down to Prevent Falls in Construction will occur the week of May 6.

Professor explores link between lead poisoning, juvenile delinquency

Through Case Western Reserve University’s Center on Urban Poverty and Community Development, Professor Rob Fischer is working on an initiative to find a link between lead poisoning, usually resulting from paint containing lead, and juvenile delinquency.  

Fischer is an associate professor at the Jack, Joseph and Morton Mandel School of Applied Social Sciences, where he teaches graduate-level classes pertaining to social work and nonprofit management. He has taught classes including School of Applied Social Sciences 410: Nonprofit Data-Based Decision Making, School of Applied Social Sciences 532: Needs Assessment and Program Evaluation and School of Applied Social Sciences 545: Nonprofit Program Design. Fischer is also the co-director for the Center on Urban Poverty and Community Development, which works with low-income communities and their residents to understand the impact of social and economic changes within Cleveland.

Early studies conducted by Fischer and the Center show that around 25 percent of kindergarteners in the Cleveland Metropolitan School District have had significant exposure to lead poisoning, though in some cases the number of students affected by lead poisoning is as high as 40 percent.

Fischer’s studies also concluded that there is a discernible difference between children affected by lead poisoning on the East and West Sides of Cleveland. Those attending school on the East Side of Cleveland are much more likely to have exposure to lead than children attending school on the West Side.

Lead poisoning, while eliminated from the bloodstream quickly, can remain in the brain and cause damage for up to two years. If a child is exposed to lead at an early age they can experience developmental delays, learning difficulties, weight loss, hearing loss and later in life, issues with reproductive health and high blood pressure.

With the impact that lead poisoning can have on the development of those exposed to it early in life, Fischer’s research will help to determine whether or not a connection exists between exposure and a juvenile record in the future. According to the 2017 report of the Juvenile Division of the Cuyahoga County Court of Common Pleas, there were over 13,000 delinquency charges throughout the year.

Fischer believes these charges could be related to the exposure of these children early in their childhood. Fischer’s hypothesis is consistent with a 2017 study of children in Rhode Island born between 1990-2004 by Anna Aizer and Janet Currie at the National Bureau of Economic Research.The study argues that as little as one microgram of lead per deciliter of soil could increase the probability of suspension between 6.5 and 10 percent. Aizer and Currie’s study also links exposure to lead to criminal records of exposed children in their adult years.

Fischer’s studies are particularly important because exposure to lead during childhood disproportionately affects minority children, especially African Americans, living in Cleveland. Children living in the poorest areas of Cleveland are most likely to be exposed to lead through lead in the paint of their homes and apartments. Though lead paint was banned in 1978, it is still in the walls and woodwork in many older buildings today.

If a link between juvenile delinquency and exposure to lead is confirmed, it could result in higher standards for landlords in Cleveland and other cities, and force them to remove lead-based paint from their properties before renting them out, as well as put in place a framework for the evaluation and education of students who might have been impacted by lead poisoning.