Last month the U.S Department of Labor’s Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) renewed an alliance with the National Association of Women in Construction (NAWIC), extending the pact (originally signed in August 2013) for another five years and reaffirming the agency’s commitment to the health and safety of women construction workers.

“Women represent a small, but growing segment of the construction workforce,”said Deputy Assistant Secretary of Labor for Occupational

women graphSafety and Health Loren Sweatt. “OSHA’s renewed alliance with NAWIC willcontinue to promote innovative solutions to safety and health hazards unique to female construction workers.”

The alliance will focus on hazards specific to women construction workers, including personal protective equipment, worksite sanitation and the issue of workplace intimidation and violence.  

According to the alliance renewal agreement, OSHA and NAWIC will work to share information about OSHA’s rulemaking and enforcement initiatives, including national programs, opportunities to participate in the rulemaking process, safety and health laws, and the rights and responsibilities of workers and employers.

To this end, OSHA and NAWIC will spread their message through print and digital media, the organizations’ websites, exhibitions and appearances at conferences and other events. The groups will also encourage NAWIC chapters to build relationships with federal OSHA Regional and Area Offices. 

The agreement is part of OSHA’s Alliance Program, which cultivates relationships between OSHA and other organizations to provide targeted audiences better workplace safety and health information and tools. Alliance participants share information about recognizing and preventing workplace hazards with employers and workers.


Article originally published in the Electrical Contractor Magazine, 1/2018. Hannah Fullmer author.


During ninth term of apprenticeship, students are enrolled in the OSHA 30 outreach training program. One of the required course topics is a 2-hour lesson on safety and health management. The lesson curriculum draws from OSHA’s newly revised Recommended Practices for S & H Management in Construction, and a new Safety Climate Assessment Tool (S-CAT) developed jointly with CPWR and Washington State University.

The S-CAT is a free online resource available to construction contractors who want tailored and actionable information to improve the safety of every worker at the job site. The S-CAT allows a company to obtain information regarding employee safety perceptions. These safety perceptions provide a snapshot view of the company’s job site safety climate.  A strong job site safety climate has a positive impact on a company’s overall safety culture, just as a strong safety culture positively affects job site safety climate.

Feedback is provided on 8 leading indicators of safety climate that have been shown to be predictive of employee injury rates. With just a few clicks, company employees can anonymously answer questions about each indicator, and then receive a personalized feedback report with benchmarking and comparative information indicating their current areas of success and ideas for making improvements. 

Over the course of 2017, I had 73 students complete the S-CAT and their responses were largely on par with the benchmark average for the other 978 responses from other construction employers in the database.


The numbers 1-8 in the chart and table below pertain to the following 8 leading indicators:
1. Demonstrating Management Commitment
2. Aligning and Integrating Safety as a Value
3. Accountability
4. Supervisory Leadership
5. Empowering and Involving Employees
6. Improving Communication

7. Training at all Levels
8. Owner/Client Involvement

S CAT Results

 The full report provides analysis for each of the 8 indicators. Contact me if you would like a copy.
I plan to continue these surveys during 2018, but have the report compare responses from students working for small, medium, and large sized contractors.


Joint Safety Committee


NECA - IBEW Joint Safety Committee Meeting Minutes
IBEW Local 48 labor representatives and Oregon-Columbia Chapter NECA Safety Managers meet monthly to discuss jobsite safety concerns, review new safety regulations and develop industry best practices to elevate safety for our industry.  The committee was recognized at the 2009 Oregon Governor's Occupational Safety and Health Conference for their achievements in working together to solve difficult safety challenges.  Committee meetings every other evenly numbered month, on the third Thursday at 2:30 PM in the NIETC conference room.

Toolbox Talks


Safety Tool Box Talks are used in the workplace to address site specific safety concerns.  They can be used to document initial and refresher training as well as inform other subs or GCs of workplace safety concerns.  The NIETC Safety Talks are organized by topic and month but can be used in any manner that best fits your needs. 

Safety Certifications


Within OSHA standards there are many applications that require employers to train their employees to different levels of competency depending upon the degree of hazard, exposure or level of responsibility.  Examples include general awareness training, competent person training, qualified person training and proof of training and competency through a formal certification process.  The NIETC provides a wide variety of safety training, some of which qualifies or certifies the students to perform specific tasks.