ASSE and Friends of NIOSH Fight for NIOSH ERC and AgFF Research Programs
ASSE joined with 158 other Friends of NIOSH to urge leaders in both the Senate and House Appropriation Subcommittees on Labor, HHS, and Education to include in the Fiscal Year 2015 federal budget at least the Fiscal Year 2014 program level of $332.86 million for the National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH). That funding level would counter the Administration’s effort again this year to eliminate NIOSH’s Education and Research Centers (ERCs) and the NORA Agriculture, Forestry and Fishing Program (AFF) in research. The Administration’s justification to Congress (at page 273) for eliminating these programs is the following:
CDC’s FY 2015 request of $100,954,000 for NORA is an overall decrease of $11,046,000 from the FY 2014 Enacted level and reflects elimination of the Agriculture, Forestry and Fishing (AgFF) program, a reduction of $24,000,000. AgFF is one of 10 current CDC sectors. Although this program has made positive contributions, given the relation to CDC’s mission and the ability to have a national impact on improved outcomes, the AgFF has been proposed for elimination in a limited-resource environment. CDC will use FY 2015 funds to address high priority occupational hazards in the other nine industry sectors, as well as emerging issues that may require new approaches to prevention, such as nanotechnology. Examples of high-priority occupational hazards include chemicals used or generated in healthcare establishments, noise in manufacturing, and stress in public safety.