Safety 2022: The Impact of DEI on Safety

When safety professionals consider or evaluate programs and leadership styles, there are many factors involved, including diversity, equity and inclusion (DEI).

Monique Parker, CSP and Vice President of Safety, Environment and Health at Piedmont Lithium, talked about the importance of DEI in both leadership and program development at her session at ASSP Safety 2022 Professional Development Conference and Exposition on June 27.

DEI plays an essential role in management and company engagement. Including DEI in your company's leadership and programs can lead to more involvement, support and engagement. Not including DEI can lead to stagnant approaches, a limited team and a lack of trust.

"That's why it's so important as safety professionals that we meet everyone where they are," Parker said, "so you can lead them to the best person they can be."

If you already have programs, it's important to evaluate them and consider changing them, if necessary. Ask yourself questions, Parker said, like:

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  • How were your leadership style and programs developed?
  • Who was around you when they were founded?
  • Can DEI be considered?
  • Are you open to embrace differences?
  • "Your leadership style in one group may not be the best for another group," Parker said.

    When you're ready to implement these new leadership styles and programs, Parker encourages you to lead with a purpose. Leadership is about relationships and being vulnerable.

    When you're starting or changing a program, remember that programs should be versatile, engaging and relatable.

    To learn more about ASSP’s Safety 2022, visit safety.assp.org or follow OH&S’ coverage at the event at ohsonline.com/live.

    About the Author

    Alex Saurman is a former Content Editor for Occupational Health & Safety,who has since joined OH&S’s client services team. She continues to work closely with OH&S’s editorial team and contributes to the magazine.

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