March 3, 2023
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.
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History of Evaluation and Future Directions for the NIEHS Worker Training Program
The NIEHS Worker Training Program (WTP) places an emphasis on evaluating the training programs conducted by funded non-profit organizations, or grantees. This report reviews WTP’s evaluation history and guidance, and focuses on evaluation of WTP training program areas, efforts across multiple grantees, and evaluation activities for a specific disaster response or topic of focus.
Request for Information (RFI): Input for Developing the 2024-2028 National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences Strategic Plan
The National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences (NIEHS) solicits input from stakeholders in academia and industry, health care professionals, patient advocates and advocacy organizations, scientific or professional organizations, federal agencies, and other interested members of the public by reviewing the goals in the 2018-2023 Strategic Plan and proposing new goals for the 2024-2028 Strategic Plan. Responses must be received by April 20, 2023.
Union Rep: Employees Reporting Illness After Working on Cleanup for East Palestine Derailment
Workers that aided in the cleanup of the train derailment in Ohio have experienced lingering migraines and nausea, according to a union representative for workers that build and maintain railways for Norfolk Southern.
The Hill [Author: Stephen Neukam]
Brutal Jobs Common for Migrant Kids New to U.S.
These workers are part of a new economy of exploitation: Migrant children, who have been coming into the United States without their parents in record numbers, are ending up in some of the most punishing jobs in the country, a New York Times investigation found. This shadow workforce extends across industries in every state, flouting child labor laws that have been in place for nearly a century.
The Buffalo News [Author: Hannah Dreier]
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25th Annual Women in Construction Week
Women in Construction Week™, celebrates and promotes the role of women in the construction industry. This year's theme, 'Many Paths, One Mission', celebrates the different journeys women have taken toward the same goal: strengthening and amplifying the success of women in the construction industry. The National Association of Women in Construction (NAWIC) will host events throughout the week of March 5-11, 2023.
EPA Healthy and Resilient Communities Research Webinar Series
The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency's (EPA) Office of Research and Development will begin hosting this webinar series in 2023 to communicate research and tools intended to help communities and local decision-makers protect their assets and reduce vulnerabilities. Topics will include site remediation and restoration, community health and wellbeing, and community resilience. The first event will be held on March 14, 2023, 3:00 p.m. EST.
SRP Multiproject Center Grants: Research Across Disciplines (2023)
This Progress in Research webinar series will showcase research from 11 new and renewed Multiproject Center grantees, funded by Superfund Research Program (SRP) in 2022. In the four-part series, awardees will highlight their research projects, accomplishments, and next steps. The new centers, including Wayne State University, Columbia University, and Yale University, bring fresh ideas and approaches to tackle complex problems related to hazardous substances. Session one will be held April 28, 2023, 12:00 p.m. EDT.
|On The Web This Week
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Unions Can Help Women Close the Wage Gap
Union representation also has reduced the gender and racial wage gap by nearly 43 percent, compared to the wage gap non-union women face. The narrower these gaps, the greater the wages earned by union women over the course of their careers. Over time, they’ve earned hundreds of thousands of additional dollars and enjoyed greater economic security.
The Hill [Authors: Wendy Chun-Hoon and Liz Shuler]
Study Finds That Resilience to Natural Disasters Lags in Black Communities
In a recent study, Florida State University researchers found that trauma and a host of psychosocial and physical challenges caused by Hurricane Michael are disproportionately affecting the region's Black communities. Researchers found participants experienced a multitude of mental health issues, including significant feelings of fear, loss and hopelessness, while also exhibiting distrust in systems designed to provide relief.
Phys.org [Author: Mark Blackwell Thomas]
Occupational Exposure to Respirable Crystalline Silica Among U.S. Metal and Nonmetal Miners, 2000–2019
In metal and nonmetal (M/NM) mines in the United States, respirable crystalline silica (RCS) exposures are a recognized health hazard and a leading indicator of respiratory disease. This study describes hazardous exposures that exceed occupational exposure limits and examines patterns of hazardous RCS exposure over time among M/NM miners to better inform the need for interventions.
Commentary: Wear a respirator, not a cloth or surgical mask, to protect against respiratory viruses
Two recent publications conclude there are no differences between surgical masks and respirators for preventing person-to-person transmission of infectious respiratory viruses like SARS-CoV-2 and influenza. These studies are deeply flawed and are built on the premise that infectious respiratory viruses like SARS-CoV, SARS-CoV-2, MERS-CoV, and influenza are only transmitted person to person by large droplets. Science indicates that the predominant mode by which these viruses are transmitted person to person is inhalation of small particles, most of which are around 1 micrometer.
|Federal Agency Update
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EPA Announces Nearly $4 Million in Grant Funding to Research Cumulative Health Impacts of Climate Change in Underserved Communities in Alaska and Washington
The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) announced over $3.9 million in grant funding to the University of Washington, University of Alaska, and Iowa State University for community-based research to examine how climate change compounds adverse environmental conditions and stressors for vulnerable populations in underserved communities and help inform efforts to mitigate these impacts and improve resilience.
EPA Gulf of Mexico Division: Gulf of Mexico Environmental Justice Grants Program Request for Applications
The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) Gulf of Mexico Division is announcing a Request for Applications from eligible applicants for a direct award from EPA to become a “pass-through entity” to develop and administer a competitive subaward program to fund projects/activities authorized by CWA 104(b)(3) in communities adversely and disproportionately affected by environmental and human health harms or risks, including affected underserved communities.
Updated OSHA Rulemaking Webpage
Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) has updated the Laws and Regulations webpage. Under the third column, “Rulemaking,” there is now a list of several regulatory project webpages condensed into one location, which makes it easier to find out about the current status of projects, and links to important documents and locations like the docket for a particular project. The very last item in the third column, OSHA Rulemaking Process, now has content explaining how and when they can participate in the rulemaking process.
|Awardee Highlights/Online Learning
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CPWR Data Bulletin: Fatal and Nonfatal Focus Four Injuries in Construction
This CPWR – The Center for Construction Research and Training Data Bulletin provides information on fatal and nonfatal Focus Four occupational injuries in construction, including by injury type and detailed event/exposure. A majority of fatal occupational injuries and a large proportion of nonfatal injuries result from Construction Focus Four hazards, which include falls to a lower level, struck-by, electrocutions, and caught-in/between injuries.
Roads to Your Future: Highway Construction Workforce Partnership / Strategic Workforce Development
The Highway Construction Workforce Partnership's goal is to increase the capacity and capability of the highway construction workforce. By partnering with key organizations to develop and deploy highway construction training and placement programs, this initiative will increase the number of individuals trained and hired in highway construction trades and crafts.
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HBCU Environmental Justice and Climate Corps Internship
The Deep South Center for Environmental Justice (DSCEJ) is now accepting applications for the Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HCBU) Environmental Justice and Climate Corps Internship. Five interns representing five Gulf Coast states will immerse themselves in a hands-on research to action project working with a partner community-based organization disproportionately impacted by environmental hazards and climate change.
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