Occupational Health and Safety
Section Newsletter
Fall 2007

OHS Section Chair: 

Jim Cone, MD, MPH
Medical Director, WTC Health Registry
233 Broadway, 26th Floor
New York, NY 10279-2600
(212) 442-2402
jcone@health.nyc.gov

 

OHS Section Newsletter Editor:

Ingrid A. Denis, MA
(888) 347-2632 
Fax: (202) 347-4950
idenis@aoec.org

 

 

Chair's Message

Thanks to all of our Section members who have worked this past year to expand our efforts to improve occupational health through projects with APHA.  Especially, I wish to thank our committee chairs who have planned this year's program so well. 

The next year will be an important one for our field.  There will be new opportunities politically with the presidential election season to raise issues that have been buried over the past eight years.  A volunteer is needed to carry on the efforts so ably lead by Joel Shufro (jshufro@nycosh.org) to create a political action committee around occupational health and safety. 

Consumer safety is emerging as a key issue.  We once again have seen the connection between the health of workers and the health of the public illustrated by diacetyl popcorn flavoring, with at least one case of lung disease in a consumer associated with frequent popcorn consumption. Our resolution proposed this year on chemical safety will be important to promote to address these issues in a more comprehensive way. 

I look forward to seeing you in Washington, D.C., in November.

Jim Cone, MD, MPH
(212) 442-2402
jcone@health.nyc.gov

APHA 2007: OHS Session Highlights

Kate McPhaul, mcphaul@son.umaryland.edu

The 2007 Annual Meeting will be held in Washington, D.C., from Nov. 4-8 with the theme "Politics, Policy and Public Health."  One idea born during last year's meeting has involved taking a larger leadership role within APHA on immigrant workers' health and safety. Launching this idea is an "institute" embedded within the OHS program.  Coordinated by Kerry Souza, Jim Cone, Kate McPhaul and Sherry Barron, this series of scientific sessions and a poster session focuses exclusively on occupational health and safety disparities, including sessions devoted to innovative research methods for immigrant workers, OHS for agricultural workers, Hispanic workers issues, and more.  The sessions begin on Monday, Nov. 5 at 8:30 a.m. with a session entitled "Environmental Justice for Immigrant Workers" (Session 3447.0) and continue through Tuesday's Poster Session devoted to occupational health disparities among vulnerable workers (Session 4188.0).

Another exciting session entitled "Paradigm Shift or Struggle: Integrating Health Promotion and Health Protection" (Session 4247.0) is coordinated by Cassandra Okechukwu, a student member and Dr. Greg Wagner, a senior scientist and longtime OHS Section member.  This session is designed to involve our section in understanding and informing methods to integrate health promotion and health protection in the workplace.  This Tuesday afternoon panel includes NIOSH grantees, employer and labor perspectives.

Another panel entitled ""Mental Health and Occupational Health: Improved Consumer, Community and Staff Safety" (Session 5130.0, 11/7/07, 12:30pm) is co-sponsored by the OHS Section, but is actually part of the Mental Health Section program.  Workplace violence advocates from within our section (Kate McPhaul, Jonathan Rosen, Matt London, Jane Lipscomb) will discuss a case study of a mental health field worker murdered by a client while on the job, and the panel will explore how mental health and occupational health advocates can work together to improve staff safety while preserving client rights and access to care.

We have a substantial representation from students, OHIP interns, rank and file workers, new investigators, and international investigators, all of whom are potentially active OHS Section members. Please make an effort to get these sessions and all the business meetings and social functions that are part of the 2007 OHS Program. For a complete listing of OHS-related activities and sessions at the APHA Annual Meeting, visit the OHS Section Web site at http://depts.washington.edu/oshalert/2007OHS_Program_Aug%2023.pdf.

APHA 2007: OHS Awards Luncheon

Peter Dooley (laborsafe@aol.com) and OHS Awards Committee
 
The following individuals have been selected for the 2007 OHS Awards - 150 OHS members participated in the selection process. Thanks to all who participated.
 
»Alice Hamilton Award
Rosemary Sokas, MD, MOH (University of Illinois)
»Lorrin Kerr Award
Celeste Monforton, MPH (George Washington University)
»Tony Mazzocchi Award
Jonathan Rosen, MS (New York State Public Employees Federation (PEF)) and Tammy Miser  (United Support & Memorial For Workplace Fatalities)
»International Health & Safety Award
Jagdish Patel (Peoples Training and Research Centre (PTRC), India)
 
Congratulations to the awardees and all those nominated. Our movement has so many dedicated and talented professionals and activists.  Thanks to everyone for the work you do to fight for worker health and safety rights!
 
Please join us in recognizing this year's award recipients at the 2007 Awards Luncheon.  The annual event will be at the Washington, D.C. Convention Center, Tuesday, Nov. 6 at 12:30 p.m.  Tickets are $25 and must be purchased before 5:00 p.m. on Sunday, Nov. 4.  You may purchase your Awards Luncheon ticket when you register, or you may amend your registration to add a luncheon ticket.  If you have questions about purchasing a lunch ticket separate from the registration process, or have other ticket questions, contact Celeste Monforton at eohcnm@gwumc.edu or (202) 994-0774.

 

 

APHA 2007: Book Reading of New Tony Mazzocchi Bio at OHS Section Social Hour, Nov. 4

Jim Young, jfyoung@rcn.com

 

“Whether leading the charge for the Occupational and Health Safety Act, protecting workers from toxic exposures, traveling the country to argue for health insurance, testifying before Congress, or inspiring a generation of student activists, (Tony) Mazzocchi’s fiery passion for social and economic justice was revealed in every action he took.”

Pulitzer Prize-winning historian, Doris Kearns Goodwin

 

Les Leopold will help kick off this year’s APHA OHS Social Hour at the APHA Annual Meeting, Sunday, Nov. 4 at 5:00 p.m. in Washington, D.C. (see APHA Annual Meeting Program for location) with a reading from his newly published biography, The Man Who Hated Work And Loved Labor: The Life and Times of Tony Mazzocchi (Chelsea Green Publishing). 

 

Many APHA OHS Section members know Mazzocchi as the man for whom one of three OHS Section Awards is named.  The OHS Tony Mazzocchi Award “gives recognition to grassroots health and safety activists in Local Unions or other local organizations fighting for the health and safety rights of workers.”  Many others in the OHS Section were influenced by Mazzocchi, directly or indirectly, as he was one of the first labor leaders to build bridges between the public health community and unions in an effort to defend the health and safety of workers, their neighbors and the environment.

 

As chronicled in The Man Who Hated Work, Mazzocchi’s inspiring story spans the Great Depression to his death in 2002, including his youth in 1930s Brooklyn, his participation in the Battle of the Bulge, organizing “On the Waterfront” in Red Hook, and his rise to prominence within the labor movement, from local leader to national officer.  The book also takes a close look at Mazzocchi’s pivotal role in founding OSHA, blowing the whistle on asbestos hazards, winning laws giving workers and communities the right to know about toxics, and fighting for health and safety in the atomic energy industry – including his role as a mentor to Karen Silkwood. 

 

According to Leopold, who directs both The Labor Institute and the Public Health Institute, Mazzocchi was “the Rachel Carson of the American workplace.”  He was instrumental in building the occupational-safety movement, the environmental-health movement, labor-environmental alliances, and in creating a new generation of worker-oriented occupational-health professionals.  As a result of his pioneering work, Leopold says, “Today fewer workers inhale toxic fumes, fewer lungs are filled with poisons, fewer skins are scarred from caustics and acids, and fewer bodies are maimed and mauled.”  Because of Mazzocchi, he says, “There is less suffering from work-related cancer, radiation sickness, emphysema and neurological disorders. The epidemic is not over, but Mazzocchi – more than any other individual – brought it under control.” 

 

“Tony conjured up a labor movement that didn’t really exist, but just might,” writes Leopold in the book’s introduction.   “This movement would be militant and green. It wouldn't just fight to protect the workforce from toxics — it would eliminate toxics.  It would bring about radical changes that would stop global warming. It would give workers real control over the quality and pace of work and over corporate investment decisions. It would champion the fight against militarism and for justice and equality.  It would win life-enhancing social programs like free health care. It would dare to create a new political party to counter the corporate corruption of the two major parties.”

 

“In short,” Leopold concludes, “it would make good on its potential to transform American capitalism into something much more humane. “    

 

To order advance copies of the book, visit the Chelsea Green Web site at www.chelseagreen.com.  For bulk orders (five or more), call The Public Health Institute at (917) 606-0511.  For more information visit www.TonyMazzocchi.org, a Web site devoted to the book featuring photos, an excerpt covering Mazzocchi’s relationship with Karen Silkwood, and other background information, as well as a discussion board.

APHA 2007: APHA Exec Board Candidates

Below are the candidacy statements of two OHS Section members, Andrea Kidd Taylor and Peter Orris, running for positions on the APHA Executive Board. Drs. Taylor and Orris will also be among the candidates visiting Section Business Meetings at the APHA Annual Meeting in November.


Andrea Kidd Taylor, DrPH, MSPH

 

APHA has an obligation to continue and increase its advocacy for the public’s health on behalf of those individuals whose voices are often ignored, unnoticed and discounted in today’s society. This means advocating for the entire community - locally, nationally and internationally.  As advocates for the public’s health, APHA must continue to lead the call for affordable and quality health care that is accessible to all. In advocating for the public’s health, APHA must also be recognized as an agent for change, fighting for social justice and equality. As we recognize the extreme disparities of survival for cancer, heart disease, AIDS and various social ills among our communities, we should work collectively and continually to advocate for and implement programs and policies that will ultimately improve the quality of life for all individuals.  APHA must be at the forefront of identifying strategies to educate, mentor and recruit students from diverse backgrounds into the public health field, thereby increasing and improving the level of professionalism in those communities with the greatest need and empowering them.  Such strategies can only strengthen APHA and the state affiliates by increasing overall membership.  My greatest contribution to the Executive Board will be the 20 plus years of experience and expertise I bring from work in public health policy and practice.  Working to effectively implement APHA’s policies through addressing its strategic priorities and continuing to identify ways of improving communication between the membership, including our sections, SPIGs, affiliates and caucuses, are very important tasks that are critical in helping APHA accomplish its overall mission of improving the health of the public and achieving equity in health status.

 

 

Peter Orris, MD, MPH 

 

I am running for Speaker of the Governing Council because of my 35-year commitment to the deliberative process of the APHA.  I have developed resolutions, been a member of the Joint Policy Committee, testified/taken testimony at the public hearings, and participated in Council debate.  It is this consensus building process, involving hundreds of public health professionals, that has produced a remarkable array of policy often so important to the public’s thinking. The Association’s role as the nation’s, and with our colleagues in WFPHA the world’s, independent voice for the public’s health, requires us to propose immediate initiatives as well as cures for the underlying causes of ill health.

 

I believe that APHA must continue to play an important role domestically and, with the new century and our globalized world, internationally as well.  As public health professionals we must propose immediate initiatives and identify cures for the underlying causes of terror and insecurity.   The realities of racial and ethnic discrimination, war and other environmental disasters, as well as the increasing disparity between multinational corporate profits and global living standards, present formidable problems as yet unresolved. 

 

These and other problems are solvable with a knowledgeable and committed global citizenry.  Educating and securing public understanding and support of needed public health initiatives is a primary task of public health associations.  We have reduced lead poisoning among children by removing lead from gasoline. We have created a global consciousness about climate change and the need for action.   HIV/AIDS has been reduced from a surely fatal disease to a chronic disablement in those countries in which society has been mobilized and committed.  Finally, though hard to see, we have slowed the push for larger and more destructive wars in our own country and abroad.

 

It is through joint action reflecting our collective opinion, crafted out of policy debate, that we are able to move forward and secure government action for the public’s health. Over the past years the Governing Council has revitalized its role in the Association.  It has developed the scientific and democratic components of its policy process, become involved in a more meaningful way in the oversight of the activities of the association including strategic planning, and has begun to develop the ability to meet and resolve issues between annual meetings.   The Council’s Speaker should be central to the efforts of staff and members to continue to improve individual participation in and group decision making by the Council especially between Annual Meetings.

 

APHA 2007: All Work and No Play?

  Adams Morgan Neighborhood, Washington, DC
Adams Morgan Neighborhood, Washington, D.C.
Put on your dancing shoes and join us for the Public Health Activists’ Dance Party, Tuesday Nov. 6, 2007 at the The Brass Monkey, 2317 18th St., Washington, D.C. (Adams Morgan neighborhood).  Entertainment by a local DJ.  Proceeds go to the OHS Section Scholarship Fund. $20 (or as you are able).

 

Sponsors:
APHA OHS Section

APHA Labor Caucus

APHA Spirit of 1848 Caucus

APHA Peace Caucus

APHA 2007: Health & Safety Summit

Come To the
2007 Health & Safety Activist Summit

Saturday, Nov. 3, 2007
Program: 1:30 p.m. – 7:00 p.m.

Washington, D.C. Convention Center

Room 103B

 

  • What Issues can we work on together for the following year to raise the bar for Worker H&S improvements?
  • What Groups can work together in concerted activity to make a change for workers?
  • How can we work on Campaigns to make a difference to stop dangerous working conditions?

 

Build on the momentum of the National COSH Network meeting and the start of the APHA OHS meeting by participating with allies in COSH groups, Labor, Family Support Groups, Injured Worker Groups, Academic, Teen Workers, Worker Training Programs, and Environmental Groups to plan and agitate for change.

 

Program includes:

  • Guest Panel Discussion
  • Participatory Breakout Sessions
  • Collective decisions to plan future actions

 

Register today by sending an e-mail to Laborsafe@aol.com with your name, affiliation and contact phone number. Suggested donation is $20.

 

There will be a meeting of the Youth@work group that focuses on young worker health and safety issues at 9:30 a.m. in the same room. At 12:30 -1:30 there will be a presentation and photos from David Parker about his new book on global child labor. Activists are encouraged to join both of these events.

 

Conference sponsored by National COSH in cooperation with OHS Section.

APHA 2007: AOEC 'Get Acquainted' Breakfast

The Association of Occupational and Environmental Clinics (AOEC) invites OHS members to their informal 'Get Acquainted' Breakfast, Sunday, Nov. 4, 8:00 a.m.-9:30 a.m. in Room 207B of the Washington Convention Center.  A continental breakfast will be served.  No formal program is planned, it's a chance to 'meet and greet', see old colleagues, grab a quick breakfast and start the day in a more pleasant way.  AOEC staff will be on hand to answer any questions you may have about their organization's projects and activities.

New at Bookstore Near You: Before Their Time: The World of Child Labor

Parker, David L., Before Their Time: The World of Child Labor. New York: Quantuck Lane Press (September 2007), $35.

 

Reviewed by Mary E. Miller, mmar235@lni.wa.gov

Co-chair, Young Worker Health and Safety Network, APHA

 

Carpet Weaver, Nepal, 1993

 

Before Their Time: The World of Child Labor is David L. Parker’s latest contribution to the body of evidence about the tragedy that is child labor.  His sensitivity to the children he photographs and the conditions they are forced to endure should humble and humiliate us all.  These photographs will hopefully motivate many of us to take action to end this abuse.  The courage of the children is evident in the black and white portraits that depict every type of dehumanizing working condition reminiscent of the Industrial Revolution in the United States and Europe.  These dramatic images reflect our failure to address the economic disparities existing in our global marketplace – the assumptions that adults do not deserve a living wage, and that children without adequate protections can be exploited by their need and the greed of others.  As a physician of occupational medicine, David Parker turns the eye of his camera to this public health disaster of child laborers.  The foreword by Sen. Tom Harkin sets out a challenge for those who see these images: to transform outrage and sadness to hope and activism that will bring an end to such suffering. 

 

David Parker will present some of his slides at the Young Worker Health and Safety Network meeting on Saturday, Nov. 3 at 12:00 p.m. (Session 119.0).  He will also be at various social events throughout the meeting and the OHS Section’s Exhibit Booth book signing for those who wish to purchase a copy. Stop by the OHS Section Exhibit Booth for more information.

Conferences, Trainings and Opportunities

 

November 2007

 

Northwest Center for Occupational Health & Safety (NWCOHS): Certified Hazardous Materials Managers National Overview, (Seattle) Nov. 5-7, 2007.  To register visit: http://depts.washington.edu/ehce/NWcenter/courses/CHMM-06.htm or call: (206) 543-1069.  

 

The Deep South Center for OH&S: Respiratory Protection Program with Fit Testing Workshop, (Cleveland, Tenn.) Nov. 12-14, 2007.  For registration and location information, call (205) 934-7178, or visit www.uab.edu/dsc.

 

IOHA: International Occupational Hygiene Association 7th International Conference, (Taipai, Taiwan) Feb. 18-22, 2008.  Early Registration Deadline: Nov. 18, 2007.  To register visit: www.ioha2008.org.

 

NECOEM/MaAOHN Annual Conference: "A Day in the Life of an OEM Clinician: Medicine Meets the Workplace," (Bedford, Mass.) Nov. 29-30, 2007. For information call: (978) 373-5597 or visit www.necoem.org.

 

December 2007

 

The Deep South Center for OH&S: Spirometry Workshop, (Birmingham, Ala.) Dec. 3-4, 2007.  For information, call (205) 934-7178 or visit: www.uab.edu/dsc.

 

Northwest Center for Occupational Health & Safety (NWCOHS): Respiratory Protection, Medicals, Fit Testing, Training, and Documentation, (Seattle) Dec. 4, 2007.  For more information visit:    http://depts.washington.edu/ehce/NWcenter/course/RESP-07.htm  or call: (206) 543-1069.

 

ACGIH Webinar: Nanotechnology Health and Safety: Case Studies in the Occupational Setting, Dec. 4, 2007, 2:00 p.m., Eastern Standard Time (GMT -05:00, New York).  To register and review course information visit: http://www.acgih.org/events/course/Nanotech_webinar.htm.

 

The Deep South Center for OH&S: Audiometric Testing and Hearing Conservation,  (Birmingham, Ala.) Dec. 5-7, 2007.  For more information, call: (205) 934.7178, or visit www.uab.edu/dsc.

 

Ongoing

MPH via Distance Education

 

Your Master’s in Public Health with an Occupational Health Nursing concentration via distance education from The University of North Carolina @ Chapel Hill is only a click away.  You can attend classes online anytime of the day or night. Tuition assistance is available. 

 

ØFor more information contact Judy Ostendorf at judy_ostendorf@unc.edu or Bonnie Rogers at rogersb@email.unc.edu and visit:  www.sph.unc.edu/phlp/distance/ohn.htm.


 

OPPORTUNITIES

 

University of Illinois at Chicago

Environmental and Occupational Health Sciences Faculty Position: Tenure Track/Open Rank

 

The School of Public Health at the University of Illinois at Chicago seeks applicants for a faculty position, beginning fall 2008, in Environmental and Occupational Health Sciences at the level of Professor, Associate Professor, or Assistant Professor.  The applicant must have a doctoral degree and will be expected to direct the NIOSH funded industrial hygiene and hazardous substances graduate training programs and compete for NIH, NSF, NIOSH, DOE, and EPA research grants. As such, administrative experience with federal training grants, specifically industrial hygiene, a demonstrated track record of research funding and peer reviewed publication, and certification in industrial hygiene are preferred.

 

EOHS has strong research, educational, and service programs, is home to the NIOSH-sponsored Illinois Occupational and Environmental Health and Safety Education and Research Center (Illinois ERC), and UIC's occupational medicine residency and Industrial Hygiene programs.  The Industrial Hygiene program in EOHS provides training for both master and doctoral level students, is supported by the Illinois ERC, and is fully accredited by ABET.  Additional information about EOHS can be found at http://www.uic.edu/sph/eohs.htm.

 

The University of Illinois is an Affirmative Action/Equal Opportunity Employer. The beginning date for this position will be on August 16, 2008.  For fullest consideration, applications should be received by Nov. 15, 2007.  Please send curriculum vitae, statement of research interest, and names of three references to:


Lorraine M. Conroy, ScD, CIH

Chair, Search Committee

EOHS (M/C 922)
University of Illinois at Chicago

School of Public Health
2121 West Taylor Street
Chicago, IL 60612

 

 

University College, Dublin 

Professor of Occupational and Environmental Studies

Ref: 003087

 

UCD is at the forefront of leading edge research and teaching activities across a wide range of disciplines.  Our current academic leaders are recognized, nationally and internationally, as innovative and creative contributors to their specialist fields.  We are now seeking to expand this team through a number of key academic appointments.  Successful candidates will play a critical role in helping UCD to further build its vision as an internationally recognised centre of academic excellence and as a leader in the development of third and fourth level education in Ireland.

 

The Governing Authority of the University invites applications for the full-time permanent position of: Professorship of Occupational and Environmental Studies

 

The University seeks to appoint an outstanding scholar to the Chair of Occupational and Environmental Studies. The successful applicant will have a distinguished international research record. The Professor will have relevant research and teaching interests and experience that will build upon the opportunities presented by the combination of subjects which comprise the UCD School of Public Health and Population Science and its associated research institutes. The role will involve the provision of research leadership including high quality scholarship and international publication, securing new research funding, and the supervision of doctoral students. The successful applicant will also contribute to teaching and curriculum development at both undergraduate and postgraduate levels and to academic leadership in general. The University will particularly welcome applications from those who can best further the integration of the School and foster collaboration among colleagues and demonstrate a willingness to develop the subject nationally and internationally.

 

Qualifications and complete ad can be found at:

 

http://www.ucd.ie/hr/html/vacancies/2007/academic/003087.htm

 

The closing date for receipt of completed applications is Nov. 9, 2007. Prior to application, further information (including application procedure) should be obtained from:

 

UCD Personnel, University College Dublin, Belfield, Dublin 4

(quoting Ref# 003087)

Email: orla.cosgrave@ucd.ie or

Web page: www.ucd.ie/vacancies

UCD is an equal opportunities employer.