DES PLAINES, Ill., April 29 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- During the annual North American Occupational Safety and Health Week (NAOSH) this May 4 - 10, American Society of Safety Engineers' (ASSE) occupational safety, health and environmental (SH&E) professional members, the U.S. Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA), the Canadian Society of Safety Engineering (CSSE), the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) - Commercial Motor Vehicle Safety Belt Partnership, the American Red Cross, 72 corporations and associations representing all industries, 150,000+ businesses and millions of people will provide tools, best practices and solutions on how to increase workplace safety. Due to the efforts of many, millions of people go to and return home safely from work every day. However, in the U.S. alone, 5,840 workers died from on-the-job injuries in 2006 and millions more suffered workplace injuries and illnesses. These can be prevented. Workplaces are safer than they were decades before the 1971 passage of the Occupational Safety and Health Act, yet accidents continue. To protect workers, communities and employers, the 32,000 ASSE SH&E members work day in and day out identifying hazards and implementing safety and health advances in all industries and at all workplaces The goal is to reduce and prevent workplace fatalities, injuries, and illnesses. Businesses who have adopted safety into their core business strategy continue to see how it contributes positively not only to their bottom line, but also to the company's brand and reputation, and employee and vendor morale. Workplace safety contributes to a reduction in health insurance and workers compensation costs and provides a safe working environment for employees and the community in which they do business. Society as a whole benefits when there are fewer accidents and on-the-job injuries. Safety is also good business. Today businesses spend about $170 billion a year on costs associated with occupational injuries and illnesses. It is estimated that U.S. employers pay almost $1 billion a week to injured employees and their medical care providers. Tragically, families, friends, and co-workers of victims of on-the-job accidents suffer intangible losses and grief that last a lifetime. Society has long recognized a safe and healthy workplace positively impacts employee morale, health, and productivity and a recent Goldman Sachs JBWere study showed a financial link. The study found links between workplace safety and health factors and investment performance. It found that companies who did not adequately manage workplace safety and health issues underperformed those who did -- suggesting that workplace safety and health factors have potentially greater effectiveness at identifying underperforming stocks. During NAOSH Week and on the May 7 Occupational Safety and Health Professional Day (OSHP), ASSE members and NAOSH supporters will distribute best practices and safety information aimed at increasing workplace safety. Through OSHA's Alliance Program, more than 40 alliance partners including the American Red Cross, the American Heart Association, the Dow Chemical Company and Abbott are supporting NAOSH Week. In Washington, D.C., the national kick-off events take place Monday, May 5 from 10:00 - 11:00 a.m. at the U.S. Department of Labor, Frances Perkins Auditorium. From 12:30 - 2:00 p.m. at the U.S. Capitol's Mansfield Room ASSE will present the sixth annual "Safety-on-the-Job" poster contest awards (including a special FMCSA safety award) to children aged 5-14 who have traveled to D.C. from around the world. The event continues from 2:30 - 4:00 p.m. when ASSE will hold a family activity for the ASSE poster contest entrants at the National Gallery of Art, in celebration of their creativity and how they best illustrated being safe at work in their posters. Hosting the D.C. events will be ASSE President Michael W. Thompson, CSP, (Houston, TX), CSSE Secretary Andrew Cooper (Ottawa, Canada), and OSHA Deputy Administrator Don Shalhoub joined by FMCSA Deputy Administrator David H. Hugel and Red Cross Senior Vice President Scott Conner. WWII Veteran Nevin Price, of the 9th Army Air Corps, 397th Bomb Group (Baltimore, MD), will attend along with the winners of the 6th annual ASSE "Safety-on-the-Job" poster contest from the U.S., Canada and Kuwait and the "Be Ready. Be Buckled" poster contest winner. Founded in 1911, the Des Plaines, IL-based ASSE is the largest and oldest professional safety organization and is committed to protecting people, property and the environment. It has more than 32,000 occupational safety, health and environmental professional members. For NAOSH information/list of supporters, visit http://www.asse.org/naosh08.
SOURCE American Society of Safety Engineers