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Young Worker Initiative


Young Worker Initiative Ruth McCully Director Directorate of Science, Technology & Medicine U.S. Department of Labor - OSHA Directorate of Science, Technology & Medicine – PowerPoint PPT presentation

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Title: Young Worker Initiative

Young Worker Initiative

Ruth McCully Director Directorate of
Science, Technology Medicine
U.S. Department of Labor - OSHA Directorate of
Science, Technology Medicine 200 Constitution
Ave. NW, Room N- 3653 Washington, D.C. 20210
  • Why OSHA is focusing on young workers
  • What has been done
  • What lies ahead
  • OSHA Projects working together for Young Worker

Why a focus on Young Workers?
  • In the coming decades, expect to see greater
    percentage of young and older workers
  • NIOSH reports 80 of young people are employed
    before they leave school
  • Despite child labor laws that prohibit teenagers
    from engaging in the most dangerous occupations,
    young people have a higher rate of injury per
    hour worked than adults

  • 50 of 15-17 year olds are employed each year
  • 80 of students work at some time during their
    high school years
  • 62 of young people aged 15 17 were employed in
    retail trades (1996-1998) with greatest number in
    food service
  • 8 of male and 2 of female youths were employed
    in agriculture

Unique Risks
  • Young workers under 18 face unique health
    safety risks on the job
  • Low levels of experience
  • Limited SH training
  • Lack of supervision
  • Physical psycho-social developmental factors
  • Young workers may have increased susceptibilities
    to chemical exposure

The Problem
  • Each year in the US
  • 60-70 adolescents die from work related injuries
  • Estimated 200,000 young workers seek emergency
    medical treatment
  • Non-fatal occupational injuries for workers under
    18 are more frequent than for adults
  • Burns lacerations are most common injuries
  • Overall fatality rate is similar to adults even
    though law does not allow them to work in more
    hazardous occupations
  • Risk of a youth dying while doing construction
    work is twice the risk to adults

Whats Been Done
  • NIOSH funded 3 pilot projects
  • They developed
  • Curricula for high school students
  • Materials for employers parents
  • Strategies for providing effective training
  • Approaches to increase awareness of occupational
    SH among young people
  • Demonstrated importance of bring stakeholders
    together at local level to develop implement
    prevention strategies

OSHA Strategic Focus
  • Compliance Assistance focused rather than
  • Built around Institute of Medicine report
  • Stimulating creation of age-appropriate course
  • Developing programs to train-the-trainers who
    work with youth
  • Recognizing commendable workplaces
  • DSTMs Office of Occupational Health Nursing is
    leading OSHAs effort
  • Elise Handelman 202-693-2120

OSHA Activities
  • Teen Worker Page
  • Skills USA
  • Federal Network for Young Worker Safety Health
  • Forklift Working Group
  • Seasonal Campaign for Young Worker Safety

Teen Worker Page
(No Transcript)
Jose's Story Crushed and Died While Cleaning a
Dough Mixing Machine Jose, a 15-year-old
pizzeria worker was killed when he became
entangled in a machine used to mix pizza dough.
Jose had arrived in the United States from
Guatemala one month before the incident and had
been working at the family-owned pizza restaurant
for only two weeks.  On the night of the
incident, he was cleaning the pizza dough mixer
as the restaurant was closing for the evening,
working alone in the kitchen as the remaining
staff cleaned the adjoining dining room. He
apparently lifted the cover of the mixer,
uncovering the 32-inch-diameter mixing bowl, and
started the machine. Reaching into the bowl he
was caught by a large mixing fork. His co-workers
heard him scream, but were unable to reach him in
Skills USA
  • Vocational Industrial Clubs of America
  • Brings together 4000 students
  • June in Kansas City
  • John Henshaw will be speaker this year
  • OSHA Booth Your assistance welcomed
  • Very Interactive
  • Games Contests

The Federal Network for Young Worker Safety
Health FedNet
Fork Lift Outreach
  • In response to 2 teenage fatalities
  • Tri-agency Outreach
  • Packets include
  • Cover letter signed by directors of 3 Agencies
  • Press Release
  • SHIB
  • NIOSH Background Document on Teen Worker
  • ESA Forklift Hazard Sticker
  • Distributed over 3500 packets to date including
    copies to all Consultation Projects
  • Also available via WWW.OSHA.GOV under powered
    industrial trucks

Teen Summer Outdoor Jobs afety Pays
  • Electronic Outreach Initiative deployed in
  • Strong language about prohibitions on teenagers
    in hazardous jobs
  • News Release with distribution to
  • OSHA family including Consultation Projects
  • ETA Business Relations Group
  • Youth Program Operators
  • State Local Workforce Investment managers
  • National Youth Organizations

(No Transcript)
Whats on the Horizon
  • Seasonal Campaign for winter jobs
  • Expanding FedNet participation
  • Soliciting materials for Teen Worker Pages
  • Engaging Alliance partners in issues related to
  • Participating in other Federal groups to reach
    other teen worker populations like agriculture
    initiative in NIOSH
  • Working with NIOSH ESA to develop joint MOU to
    notify each other when teen fatality occurs
  • Looking for sources of information on measuring

OSHA Can Provide
  • Materials and information about young worker SH
  • Coordination with other Federal Agencies and
    alliance partners

OSHA Looks to Projects for Support on Young
OSHA depends on Consultation Projects and other
local arms of OSHA
  • To deliver the message about young workers
    especially to small business
  • For input on teen worker pages, both feedback and
  • Ideas for how to reach parents, young workers,
    their employers, and others who have a role in
    young peoples lives including educators and
    faith-based organizations.

  • Questions?
  • Comments?