OSHA Releases New Resources on the Intersection of Sustainability and Worker Safety and Health

Posted December 21, 2016

In an effort to protect the safety and health of workers, I wanted to alert you to new resources, including a white paper, blog, and organizational profiles, that focus on the intersection of sustainability and worker safety and health.

Through sustainability, organizations strive to balance the 3 P’s – People, Profit, Planet – to achieve long-term success and viability. Organizations of all sizes across the country and around the world have embraced sustainability as a way to showcase their values, measure impacts and outcomes, and increase their competitive advantage. However, they can only be truly sustainable when they ensure the safety, health, and welfare of one of their most vital resources—their workers.  Integrating safety and health into an organization’s sustainability strategy provides a transformative opportunity to both better protect workers and meet sustainability goals.

The white paper, Sustainability in the Workplace: A New Approach for Protecting Worker Safety and Health, was developed as a result of more than 80 conversations and the review of many articles, publications, reports, and frameworks. It lays out OSHA’s understanding of sustainability, the key areas where stakeholders are currently engaging, recognized opportunities and challenges, and potential actions that could advance OSH within sustainability discussions.

The release of the white paper is just the beginning of OSHA’s sustainability journey. Further engagement between OSHA, the OSH community, and the sustainability community can help identify new pathways for promoting a culture of safety and achieving a workplace that is truly sustainable.

For more information and to access the white paper, please visit: www.osha.gov/sustainability.

We welcome your feedback as we move forward. You can reach us at sustainability@dol.gov with questions, to discuss the work you’re doing at the intersection of OSH and sustainability, to highlight your organization in a sustainability spotlight profile, and to provide input on future directions for additional resources, tools, and products.

I hope you will share this information with your members and others, including workers and downstream customers, as part of our safety and health outreach efforts together.  A news release is also available. You can now stay updated with OSHA information by following OSHA on Twitter @OSHA_DOL and subscribing to OSHA QuickTakes.

Doug Kalinowski

Directorate of Cooperative and State Programs