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Building Tribal Capacity for a Workplace Safety Task Force John J. Schmitz REHS/RS Tucson Area Indian Health Service.

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Presentation on theme: "Building Tribal Capacity for a Workplace Safety Task Force John J. Schmitz REHS/RS Tucson Area Indian Health Service."— Presentation transcript:

1 Building Tribal Capacity for a Workplace Safety Task Force John J. Schmitz REHS/RS Tucson Area Indian Health Service

2 Project Goal Project Goal Reduce workplace injuries through the development of a practical District Safety Task Force.

3 Background The Tohono O’Odham Nation (TON) is geographically the second largest Indian Reservation in the US TON is located in South Central Arizona and consists of approximately 25,940 members (approximately 1800 members reside inside Mexico) San Lucy District is one of eleven seats of authority

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5 Background cont. This project began with a question & was answered by opportunity

6 Background Concerns Safety was an issue of concern for employee’s welfare Consistently low annual totals were reported for injuries Leadership sought safety training resources with an emphasis in OSHA requirements

7 Initial Actions Meet with Mentor(‘s) a. Designed an Outline P.O.A. b. Engineer IN Wisdom c. Engineer OUT Pitfalls Finalize Topic with District Receive necessary Approvals Finalize Methods & Conduct Literature Reviews

8 Methods 1. Selection of two OSHA MS Power Point Presentations 2. Two Safety telephone conferences (Area IP Coordinator Funded)

9 Methods Cont. OSHA Presentations (web based) a. Introduction to OSHA b. Hazard Communication These MS Power Point programs shared the most frequently awarded OSHA violations which greatly assisted in selecting which direction to initiate our actions

10 Methods Cont. Hazard Communication (Most frequently awarded OHSA Violation) a. Chemical Inventory (OSHA web-site provided the Inventory Sheets) b. MSDS Sheets (seri.uvm.edu/) c. Personal Protective Equipment (P.P.E.’s)

11 Methods Cont. Two telephone (speaker phone) safety conferences were conducted as adjunct training for supervisors. a. Stopping Everyday Injuries in Your Workplace (Injury Evaluations) b. Preventing Injuries (Soft Tissue Trauma) (Progressive Business Conferences (800) )

12 Methods Cont. Two hands-on Safety Surveys were conducted with the supervisors (The IHS Primary Care Provider, March 1995 Volume 20, Number 3)

13 Methods Cont. Two teams were drawn up and surveys were conducted on separate days. Some of the buildings surveyed were overlapped and both teams had the opportunity to compare discrepancies.

14 Methods Cont. Lessons learned from the two Safety Surveys were assessed regarding: a. Friendly Competition injected interest b. Safety Recommendations c. P.P.E. needs (adjunct to info on MSDS) d. Policy &Procedures e. Future Training needs

15 Methods Cont. Other Safety related areas assessed: a. Injury Reporting & AZ Workman’s Comp b. OSHA Injury Reporting requirements c. OSHA Form 300 (injury log) (adopted) d. NN Occupational Health & Safety Act

16 Methods Cont. Other Safety related areas assessed: e. NFPA & Life Safety Code f. 12 new Safety Policies drafted for review g. Safety Seat Belt Survey was conducted h. Safety Task Force Committee meetings have been added (monthly) to the weekly Supervisors Committee agenda

17 Electrical Safety Electrical Safety was identified as a future need

18 Conclusions and Recommendations A new found awareness for worker safety was kindled An appreciation was developed for the MSDS system and the fact that rather than a hindrance to be endured, it is a valuable tool that exists solely for our protection It was the desire from the start to develop this appreciation and it would appear that goal was achieved


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