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NIEHS WTP: December 16, 2022 Newsbrief

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Weekly E-Newsbrief, December 16, 2022

Weekly E-Newsbrief

December 16, 2022

The E-Newsbrief of the National Clearinghouse is a free weekly newsletter focusing on new developments in the world of worker health and safety. Each issue provides summaries of the latest worker health and safety news from newspapers, magazines, journals, government reports, and the Web, along with links to the original documents. Also featured each week are updates from government agencies that handle hazmat and worker safety issues such as DOE, EPA, OSHA and others.

Subscribing to the National Clearinghouse Newsbrief is the best way to stay on top of the worker health and safety news.

Top StoriesBack to Top

Urban Flooding Webinar: Recording Posted

The NIEHS National Clearinghouse for Worker Safety and Health Training explored the unique features of the urban environment and its potential to impact the health of workers, including residents, performing recovery activities following urban flooding.

Urban Flooding and the Health Risks to Recovery Workers

New Webinars Page on the National Clearinghouse Website

The National Clearinghouse is committed to developing technical and informational webinars for awardees and other interested groups. The Clearinghouse is also committed to providing up-to-date communications on upcoming webinars and events. This new Webinars page will allow the Clearinghouse to post webinars for easy searching and viewing.


Flu, RSV and COVID are Wreaking Havoc — But Teachers Don’t Feel Like They Can Stay Home When They’re Sick

Even with paid sick leave, teachers — especially in elementary schools — say staying home creates “more work.” The COVID-specific extra sick leave many teachers received at the height of the pandemic is no longer available in many places. If school employees aren’t able to use their sick leave, it increases the likelihood that viruses spread further.

The 19th [Author: Shefali Luthra]

VA Seeing a Resurgence of COVID-19 Among Patients, Urges Veterans to Get Boosted

The rise in illnesses and deaths have prompted VA officials to encourage patients to get the latest version of the COVID-19 booster vaccine. The shot addresses both the original vaccine strain and the BA.5 omicron variant. Under Secretary for Health Shereef Elnahal said that fewer than 40% of VA patients have received the shot, known as a bivalent vaccine. [Author: Patricia Kime]

Addiction Treatment Got Easier During Covid. A New Proposal Would Keep it That Way

Federal regulators announced a proposal to take the emergency policies enacted in 2020, in response to the emerging pandemic, and make them permanent. In particular, the changes would preserve patients’ expanded access to two key medications used to treat opioid addiction: methadone and buprenorphine.

Stat News [Author: Lev Facher]

Calendar FeaturesBack to Top

Safety & Health Training for American Indians & Alaska Natives in the Western U.S. – Session Two

This webinar will feature presenters from Alabama Fire College, the United Steelworkers, and St. Regis Mohawks. A website for the event is being developed and an announcement to the PEPEH listserv will be sent when it is available. The event will be held January 10, 2023, 2:00 p.m. EST.

Event Registration

EPA Tools and Resources Training Webinar Series

U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA) Office of Research and Development (ORD) hosts this bimonthly public webinar series to provide in-depth overviews and step-by-step tutorials on popular EPA science-based models and tools. In addition, the EPA Tools and Resources Webinar Series translates EPA research and shares research resources and information that are useful, practical, applied and available to meet stakeholders' research needs. The next webinar will be held on February 9, 2023, 3:00 p.m. EST.

Event Information

Submissions Open for Special Issue "Environmental Pollution and Environmental Justice: Challenges and Recommendations"

Papers on all topics linked to environmental pollution and environmental justice are encouraged in this Special Issue entitled “Environmental Pollution and Environmental Justice: Challenges and Recommendations”. New research papers, case reports, brief reports, methodological papers, articles, systematic reviews, and commentaries are welcome. The Special Issue welcomes manuscripts across multiple fields and that adopt various quantitative, qualitative, and mixed methodologies. Deadline to submit manuscripts is November 30, 2023.

MDPI Journals

On The Web This WeekBack to Top

Common Workplace Fumes and Dusts May Heighten Rheumatoid Arthritis Risk

Breathing in common workplace dusts and fumes from agents such as vapors, gases, and solvents, may heighten the risk of developing rheumatoid arthritis, suggests research published online in the Annals of the Rheumatic Diseases. Rheumatoid arthritis is a chronic autoimmune joint disorder characterized by painful and disabling inflammation. It affects up to 1% of the world’s population.

BMJ Newsroom

Making PPE Safer by Design for Women in Industrial Jobs

There is no such thing as one-size-fits-all personal protective equipment (PPE); it is unrealistic to expect that PPE based on male anthropometric (body measurement) data would fit women properly. When PPE does not fit properly, it may fail to protect the worker against the hazards for which it was designed.

Occupational Health and Safety Online [Authors: Genevieve Baziw and Amber Izworkski]

The Push for A Greener New Mexico — From Immigrant Oil Workers

In the southeastern part of the state, home to the oil-rich Permian Basin, a grassroots organization has come out in support of a clean energy transition. Somos un Pueblo Unido, or “we are a united people,” started in the mid-1990s as an immigrant-led advocacy group that promotes racial justice, workers’ rights and a broad array of other issues.

Searchlight New Mexico [Author: Lindsay Fendt]

From Wildfire Smoke to PFAS: Innovative EPA Scientists Address Longstanding Research Gaps

U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) scientists are at the forefront of cutting-edge research, addressing a wide-range of environmental and public health issues. Through the Pathfinder Innovation Projects (PIP) program, EPA’s Office of Research and Development provides support to their researchers to pursue their own novel research ideas that may improve public health and the environment.

EPA Science Matters

Federal Agency UpdateBack to Top

Renewables Advancing Community Energy Resilience (RACER) Funding Program Solar Energy Technologies Office

The U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) Solar Energy Technologies Office (SETO) Renewables Advancing Community Energy Resilience (RACER) is a $33 million funding program supporting projects that enable communities to use solar and solar-plus-storage to prevent disruptions in power caused by extreme weather and other events, and to rapidly restore electricity if it goes down. Research Projects Across 19 States, the District of Columbia, and Puerto Rico Will Help Communities Improve Energy Planning, Increase Grid Resilience, and Restore Power After Disasters.

Solar Energy Technologies Office

HHS Announces New $350 Million Initiative to Increase COVID-19 Vaccinations

The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS), through the Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA), announced a new $350 million initiative for HRSA-supported health centers to increase COVID-19 vaccines in their communities, with a specific focus on underserved populations. This funding will support health centers administering updated COVID-19 vaccines through mobile, drive-up, walk-up, or community-based vaccination events, including working with community-based organizations, and other efforts to increase the administration of COVID-19 vaccines.

HHS News Release

Biden-Harris Administration Announces More Than $2.3 Million to Create Good-Paying Union Jobs, Catalyze Economic Revitalization in Alaska and Texas

The Biden-Harris administration announced $2.3 million from President Biden’s Bipartisan Infrastructure Law to create good-paying union jobs and catalyze economic opportunity by reclaiming abandoned mine lands in Alaska and Texas. The funding is expected to address many inventoried abandoned coal mine lands in this country, which will help communities eliminate dangerous environmental conditions and pollution caused by past coal mining.    

The U.S. Department of Interior Press Release

Awardee Highlights/Online LearningBack to Top

White Paper: CPWR Workshop on Combating Suicide and Overdose Fatalities Among Construction Workers

The white paper summarizes a two-day workshop arranged and hosted by CPWR – The Center for Construction Research and Training (CPWR) on August 1 and 2, 2022, which addressed the high rates of suicide and overdose deaths in the construction industry. The workshop included a review of federal data documenting the scope of the problem; discussed initiatives with interested construction industry partners, such as from contractors, labor organizations, government and academic researchers; and began the process of developing a strategic roadmap forward by creating four thematic workgroups that have continued to meet post-workshop.

CPWR White Paper

Five Hands-on Lesson Plans: Using Air Sensors to Teach About Air Quality

U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) scientists and collaborators designed five hands-on lesson plans to encourage air quality education in communities and classrooms. Using air sensor technology, participants of all ages can use information in their own communities to explore real-time air quality and air pollution concepts.

EPA Science Matters

‘Nothing’s left’: Hurricane Ian Leaves Emotional Toll Behind

Jennifer Horney, of the Texas A&M University (TAMU) SRP Center, was quoted in an AP News article about the mental health impacts of natural disasters like Hurricane Ian. Horney was also cited in an AccuWeather article about increases in posttraumatic stress disorder and suicide rates among victims of natural disasters and how climate change is a contributing factor.

AP News [Authors: Bobby Caina Calvan and Brian Melley]

Job OpeningsBack to Top

The New England Consortium at UMass Lowell Seeks a Worker Health Educator

The New England Consortium (TNEC) is currently seeking a Worker Health Educator (WHE) for its Hazardous Waste Worker/Emergency Responder Health and Safety (H&S) Training Program based at the University of Massachusetts (UMass) Lowell in the historic Wannalancit Mills Building. The WHE will help lead TNEC’s effort for meeting its worker-oriented training goals, building the regional H&S movement and developing working relationships with labor, environmental organizations, government and business.

Job Posting

The Deep South Center for Environmental Justice Seeks a Contractor - Program Manager for the Worker Training Program

The Deep South Center for Environmental Justice is seeking a highly motivated person who can perform day-to-day administrative duties including trainee management, grant reporting, and data management. The Program Manager Worker Training Program contract position reports to the Assistant Director for Training and Operations and works closely with the Technical Training Director and Training Coordinator.

Job Posting

Deep South Center for Environmental Justice Seeks an Experienced Development Director

Reporting to and in partnership with the Executive Director (ED), the Development Director will spearhead development efforts as Deep South Center for Environmental Justice (DSCEJ) continues to grow. The Development Director is a new position in the organization. The incumbent will have the opportunity to build the development function. The successful candidate will help forge new relationships to build DSCEJ visibility, impact, and financial resources.

Job Posting

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