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NSLS ESH Highlight #35

How Can We Improve Our Safety Program?

Date: May 5, 2004
Editor: R. Casey

Two new efforts have begun at the NSLS as a part of our effort to improve safety performance. One is very visible, the safety suggestion boxes recently located in the lobby and near the stock room. The second is a new committee, which you may not have heard about yet, but I believe you will in the future. It has the potential to be a major contributor in our efforts to improve safety. Each deserves a few comments at this point.

ESH Improvement Committee

The charter and membership of the committee is posted on the web at the above link. The members of this committee were appointed by Steve Dierker and come from groups located throughout the department. Each member has responsibilities at the working level to carry out activities that broadly represent the on-going mission of the department. The purpose of this committee is to create a formal mechanism for staff at the operating level to provide on-going feedback to NSLS management on the functioning of the ESH program. I look forward to their perspectives and insights regarding the safety program and how we might improve it. Please donít hesitate to bring any thoughts or concerns that you might have regarding safety to any member of the committee if you would like this group to discuss and bring it to managementís attention.

The Suggestion Box

The two yellow, plastic suggestion boxes have been located in prominent locations and provide another mechanism for an employee or user to provide feedback to management and staff on safety issues. Some people may prefer to simply write their suggestion or concern down and pass their thoughts on in this fashion. We welcome your input conveyed in this manner as well and promise to give you feedback. Anonymous comments are also welcome.

SH Concerns

It should be clear to everyone from what you read and hear that safety issues are being discussed daily at every level within the department and the Laboratory. It is also clear to me that this is not a quick flash in the pan. These discussions reflect a clear priority that has been established at the senior management levels of the Laboratory and within the Department of Energy.

Despite this visibility, you may have ESH issues or concerns that you feel are not being adequately addressed, or worse, that you feel are being ignored. If this is the case for you, there are many processes that you can exercise, including the two new steps discussed above, that will bring additional attention to your concern. The Employee Concerns Program (Mgr. Susan Foster, x2888; is also available to you. Donít hesitate to utilize it if you are unable to get the attention initially that you believe the issue requires. Employees are sometimes reluctant to exercise this right, but the process is important and necessary if our safety program is to reach the standard that is expected for us.