Section 2.2



Society positions on matters of essential professional interest may be developed and collective action may be taken with legislative and governmental agencies including the general public.

Some major assumptions have been made. They are that:

  • The American Society of Safety Engineers has evolved into an organization which provides its membership with an avenue through which individual and collective views on matters of professional concern may be given a forum for discussion, formulation of a stated position, and implementation through planned, organized and collective action directed to the public, governmental agencies, and legislatures.

  • The expansion and explosion in numbers of governmental actions in the areas of "health" and "safety" policy, demands that safety practitioners in these professional areas assemble their views and establish a means by which their professional opinions are voiced.

  • There is a need for greater professionalism in the resolution of safety issues that face the public today, and that the American Society of Safety Engineers has the necessary expertise and knowledge available to respond to major issues such as injuries, illnesses, disasters, and hazardous situations.


The Board of Directors shall take positive steps to define Society positions in key issues that affect all persons practicing safety to:

1. Insure public awareness and understanding of the safety professionals' role in all phases of human and physical asset conservation.

2. Exercise influence over important matters affecting safety of people, property and the environment.

3. Provide a means to gain recognition for the achievements, professional skills and efforts made by the members of the American Society of Safety Engineers.


The following procedure shall be used to develop public positions on issues deemed a concern of the general membership of the Society.

1. Member, non-member or staff submits a request to Society Headquarters for comment or assistance.

2. Society staff contacts the Executive Committee, affected Council(s) and related committee(s) if the issue is appropriate for comment/action in order to determine what action should be taken (if not a legislative or regulatory issue, skip to F).

3. However, when shortened time frames exist and there is already established policy in place, then ASSE staff is authorized to respond to legislative and regulatory issues including related media inquiry and to participate in joint safety and health initiatives (i.e., NIOSH Ergo Conference, etc.) where funding is not required.

4. The Executive Committee, Council on Professional Affairs, and Government Affairs Committee makes decisions based upon this criteria:

  • Government Affairs Committee proposes policy for legislative and regulatory issues.
  • Council on Professional Affairs approves policy for legislative and regulatory issues.
  • Executive Committee makes decisions on policies relating to intersociety affairs.

1. The Executive Committee, Council on Professional Affairs, and Government Affairs Committee then defines the:

Time frame for response
Type of response:

1. Testimony before public hearing
2. Policy statement (resolution)
3. White paper
4. Article for publication
5. Monograph
6. Media presentation, interview, etc.

1. Upon presentation by the affected Council(s), the Executive Committee reviews and offers insight before release of the response.

2. If approved, the response is presented as the "stated position of the Society" under the signature of the President.

3. The President is the Spokesperson for the Society on the national level. If the President is not available or other circumstances arise to preclude his/her ability to make such a presentation, the President can designate a member of the Executive Committee, Board of Directors, Committee Chair or other Professional Member in good standing to speak for the Society.

4. Where there is already existing policy in place, special circumstances exist, (e.g.: shortened time frames, unavailability of key officers), and funding is not essential, staff is empowered to respond to vital national legislative, regulatory, or other professional affairs related issues.

5. A report of actions taken is prepared for the Board of Directors and the House of Delegates each year. This is a report of actions taken, not necessarily a review of the process or rationale for actions taken.

Public policy statements are developed in accordance with the above procedures. However, within the current framework and structure of the Society (Sections, Chapters, Committees, Divisions, Areas, Regions) there are other means by which resolutions regarding public issues could be formulated, reviewed and adopted by the Board. To establish proactive public policy positions, the aforementioned Society units shall be directed to undertake the definition of key topics and issues that affect our membership and that require formal statements affirmed by the Board as warranted.

Defined positions shall be published in Professional Safety and possibly the ASSE Web-Page after review and adoption by the Board. Using this approach, members are invited to comment upon the action taken and the policies published, thus, hopefully, stimulating the existing system to produce discussions and revisions to the policy statements published. In addition, all statements will be subject to periodic review, revision, and sunsetting, when warranted.

Approved By/Date: Board of Directors 10/4/98

Replaces Edition Dated: 10/26/97

Next Revision Due: 10/2001


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