To ensure the health and proper function of any operation or system it is important to periodically evaluate its performance against established norms or expectations. Whether it be personal health and an annual physical exam, or a vehicle’s safety with an annual inspection, it is generally agreed that periodic assessments are important to the health and function of any system or operation.
EH&S takes a similar approach to evaluating the University’s health (read: compliance) as it relates to a variety of regulated activities. EH&S routinely surveys “targeted” items, such as labeling of hazardous waste containers or eating or drinking in a lab, to verify that performance is consistent with the applicable regulations. These surveys provide useful information about future areas for program development and enhancement and for education/training needs. Most important, surveys keep us connected with those whom we serve and help keep out of trouble with the regulators. Additionally, EH&S also performs more holistic evaluations of multiple programs and program components to get a pulse on the overall health picture (read: compliance) and help establish long-range plans for University-wide environmental health and safety programs.
Since the 2004/2005 survey of EH&S programs, the department has focused on aligning policies and procedures and translating them into consistent practices amongst all University activities, be it laboratory research or building operations. This Fall, EH&S will be evaluating the University’s overall health status again (read again: compliance) with a multi-campus survey of environmental programs both in and outside the labs. The goal is to receive a clean bill of health for your work practices and work area. EH&S will be out and about this summer for some pre-survey preparation, but contact us directly if you’d like us to take a look under your hood before the Fall.
Thank you for taking the time to share your thoughts about the EH&S Safety Matters Newsletter. Feel free to comment on the usefulness, clarity, or any other aspect of the articles. We also welcome your suggestions about topics we might cover in of future editions, which will appear quarterly.
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