MEMORANDUM OF UNDERSTANDING
The American Industrial Hygiene Association (AIHA) and the American Society of Safety Engineers (ASSE) represent the world’s foremost professionals in occupational and environmental health and safety.
Furthermore, AIHA and ASSE pledge to work cooperatively on all matters of mutual interest to reach common goals.
ASSE and AIHA are in agreement that for the organizations to succeed and make positive contributions to worker health and safety, regular communication between the two organizations and members is necessary. It is the intent of both AIHA and ASSE to do whatever is necessary to ensure that the memberships of both organizations have a positive view of the relationship between ASSE and AIHA.
To accomplish this goal, ASSE and AIHA will endeavor to work together in areas and on projects of mutual interest, including but not limited to:
· Government relations, both federal and state;
· Public relations;
· Promotion of publications and products;
· Foundations; and,
· Emergency preparedness and response.
Further, to ensure that this list of potential areas of collaboration reflects new areas of interest that may surface in the future, ASSE and AIHA agree to review and modify this list as appropriate in the annual meeting of the two presidents and executive directors, which is described below.
FOSTERING REGULAR COMMUNICATIONS
Each organization’s Board President and Executive Director will help provide leadership in fulfilling the spirit of cooperation these organizations expect to achieve. Face-to-face meetings between these individuals shall occur on at least an annual basis to review the progress of the agreement and seek new opportunities to advance its purpose. It is also recommended that the appropriate staff member(s) from each organization also attend these meetings to discuss specific issues of interest, i.e., government affairs staff to discuss government affairs issues. Meetings by telecommunications as necessary are encouraged. Staff members are encouraged to communicate on a regular basis as circumstances provide.
AGREEING TO DISAGREE
No matter how closely the two organizations work, it is reasonable to assume that there will be occasions where AIHA and ASSE disagree on specific issues and/or on efforts to represent, promote, or protect their respective membership. When such differences occur, ASSE and AIHA pledge to resolve any reasonable differences in the most professional and timely manner possible.
The following process should be used to foster regular communication between AIHA and ASSE, as well as address any disagreements that may arise:
· The national office of one organization should make every attempt to keep the national office of the other organization informed of major activities that may have an impact on the membership of the other organization. The forum for this communication shall be in whatever manner is most effective, i.e., telephone, e-mail, or letter. The purpose of this communication should be to inform each organization of major activity in which the other organization may have an interest.
· If either national organization receives a complaint from a local chapter or local section about activity that is deemed detrimental to its membership, the national organization that is in receipt of the complaint shall contact the other national organization before any action or response to the member is undertaken. In this way, there is better assurance that all information will be collected prior to providing a response.
· Should either organization disagree on a specific issue, such disagreement shall be kept within the organization until such time that the disagreement can be resolved or the organizations, through direct communications between executive level staff, agree to disagree. In communicating about such issues with outside sources, i.e., media or other organizations, neither organization shall provide information that is not issue-based and may be detrimental to either organization.
· Both national organizations shall make every effort to encourage local chapters and/or local sections to avoid crafting legislation or becoming involved in issues that may adversely affect the other organization or its members. However, it is understood that there may be occasions where local chapters and/or local sections disagree over what is “adverse” to the other organization. In this instance, it is hoped the national organization will intervene to assist in reaching an amicable resolution to the issue.
Annually, during the meeting of the two presidents and executive directors, the MOU will be re-executed as a formal way in which to publicly embrace the cooperative intentions of the MOU in ongoing fashion.
December 1, 2006