Go West, Young Safety Professionals!

With work-related accidents dropping for more than a decade, focus has shifted in the NSC to the industry's growing exception, the Hispanic worker.

Housed in the San Diego Convention Center just off the downtown San Diego harbor, the National Safety Council's 94th Annual Congress & Expo will feature more than 750 exhibits next month. The 2.6-million-square-foot facility is ranked 21st in size among the 375 convention centers in North America. But few, even among the top 20, can boast an equal combination of sunshine, fine wine, and beautiful beaches. Not to mention San Diego's world-famous zoo located inside Balboa Park, the nation's largest urban cultural center.

Recognizing a Growing Trend
New at this year's conference will be the inaugural Hispanic Safety + Health Congress, an annual three-day event that will add 33 training programs, technical sessions, and seminars to the Nov. 6-8 expo. This event is just the latest action taken by the safety industry as it has begun to recognize more and more the need to step up efforts to reach out to the Hispanic workforce community. An example of this increased recognition is the ever-increasing availability of bilingual safety resources, such as OSHA's Spanish version of its etools Web site.


Despite an overall 20 percent drop in workplace fatalities in the last decade, among Hispanic workers workplace fatalities have risen almost 35 percent.

According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, despite an overall 20 percent drop in workplace fatalities in the last decade, among Hispanic workers--especially those working in the construction industry--workplace fatalities have risen almost 35 percent. This has the potential to rise further and become even more alarming as the Hispanic population continues to grow. Hispanics are second only to Asians as the country's fastest-growing minority group.

The goal of this new Hispanic Congress is to identify which new challenges the growing Hispanic population will face. General Director and Mexican Secretary of Labor and Social Prevention Manuel Rodríguez Arriaga is scheduled to give a speech on Tuesday, Nov. 7, titled "Towards a Strengthened Policy on Occupational Safety: A Mexican Perspective on National and North American Action." Sessions will be offered in English and Spanish on topics such as international safety standards; behavioral analysis; Latin American case studies; fall protection; disaster preparedness; safety management systems; productivity; risk prediction; supervision, motivation, and leadership; social responsibility; and more.

The A-list
The expo's opening session will be presented at 8 a.m. Nov. 6 by NSC President and CEO Alan C. McMillan, with special guest Dr. Jack Groppel, co-founder of The Human Performance Institute in Orlando, Fla. Groppel is author of "The Corporate Athlete," a book that explains his Corporate Athlete® concept for helping both business executives and athletes increase performance levels. Through his company, Groppel has taken his extensive experience of working with professional athletes and developed a full-regimen program of nutrition, exercise, and spiritual fitness that's designed for those competing in the world of business.

Other industry leaders invited to speak on the expo's opening day include David G. Dye, who at press time remained acting chief of the Mine Safety and Health Administration (with nominee Richard Stickler awaiting congressional confirmation); National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health Director Dr. John Howard; and Ed Foulke Jr., OSHA's administrator.


Returning this year by popular demand is the live presentation of the OSHA Top 10 Violations.

Repeat Offenses
Returning this year by popular demand is the live presentation of the OSHA Top 10 Violations. At the end of each year, Safety+Health, NSC's official publication, publishes the 10 most-cited OSHA violations. This event allows attendees to preview which citations are currently in the lead. It's also an excellent way for owners, safety managers, and employees to get a true appreciation of how the year has gone in the safety world and which areas need the most improvement. The theater presentation will be Tuesday, Nov. 7, from 10 to 10:30 a.m. on the expo floor.

Expo Hours
The 2006 Congress & Expo will be open these hours:

  • Monday, Nov. 6, 9:30 a.m. to 5 p.m.
  • Tuesday, Nov. 7, 9:30 a.m. to 5 p.m.
  • Wednesday, Nov. 8, 9:30 a.m. to 2 p.m.

For more information about the congress and expo, visit www.eshow2000.com/nsc/home.cfm.

This article appeared in the October 2006 issue of Occupational Health & Safety.

This article originally appeared in the October 2006 issue of Occupational Health & Safety.

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