About Occupational Health and Safety

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Be part of a truly influential voice in public health.

Join the APHA Occupational Health & Safety Section!

  • Are you working to improve health and safety conditions in the workplace?
  • Have you or has anyone you know ever suffered from job-related illness or injury?
  • Are you concerned with workplace reproductive hazards, ergonomics, child labor, hazardous chemicals, lead, noise, stress, workplace violence and international occupational health issues?
  • Are you interested in OSHA reform, workers' compensation, and safe staffing regulations?

If you can answer YES to any of the these questions, membership in the Occupational Health and Safety Section of the American Public Health Association (APHA) will interest you. 

The orientation of the Section is multidisciplinary. Members include occupational health specialists, occupational physicians, union organizers, occupational and industrial hygienists, safety professionals, nurses, educators, administrators, epidemiologists, and attorneys. Section membership offers numerous opportunities for professional advancement, as well as further involvement in APHA. Members are involved in:

Public Policy/Advocacy:

Through Section-developed resolutions and position papers, members have a voice in the determination of APHA's occupational health and safety policy positions, which directly and indirectly influence national public health policy. Recent Section-initiated resolutions have addressed risks related to lead exposure, occupational transmission of HIV, surveillance of occupational disease and injury, child labor, ergonomics, job stress and workers' compensation. The APHA gives us a voice in national, even global debates on issues that impact the health of workers, our population, and our planet.

The OHS Section often partners with other sections to advocate for specific, cross-cutting policies. Over the years, APHA has adopted Policy Statements covering a wide range of issues related, but of interest, to the occupational safety and health field.


Scientific/Technical Developments:

The Section is occasionally called upon to provide input concerning scientific and technical developments involving Section activities and expertise.

 Knowledge Base:

The American Journal of Public Health is an excellent resource for the research and study of occupational health and safety issues. Section members regularly contribute articles; moreover, a recent issue focused on occupational health. Valuable information on the public health profession is also provided in The Nation's Health.

 Section Activities:

Each year, the Section sponsors and co-sponsors about 40 sessions and-forums at the Annual Meeting. At the 2005 convention, topics included ethical issues in occupational health, respiratory diseases, lead exposures, workplace violence, workers' compensation, and, health and safety issues for immigrant and minority workers, agricultural workers, healthcare workers, and young workers. The Section also offers opportunities for participation on committees, has its own newsletter for members, sponsors OSHALERT (an electronic communication system for rapid distribution of important information), and has an important careers booklet describing the variety of professional occupations available within the arena of occupational health and safety.

 Association Governance:

The Section contributes to the leadership of APHA by providing officers and Governing Council members. Members also take an active role in the planning and coordination of Section activities and events at the APHA Annual Meeting.

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