September 2014

As chief elected officer of the Society, ASSE's president promotes the advancement of the Society and the safety profession, and represents ASSE before members, other relevant professional societies and various governmental agencies. Professional Safety shares his latest thoughts on the Society, the profession and its practice.

Read past messages in the President's Message Archive.

President's Message - April 2004

NAOSH Week may only occur once a year, but it's one of the many tools we can use to promote safety and the SH&E profession year round.

2003-2004 ASSE President James "Skipper" Kendrick, CSP

NAOSH Week is May 2-8

North American Occupational Safety & Health (NAOSH) Week focuses national attention on preventing work-related injuries and illnesses. It's a perfect opportunity to highlight the benefits of investing in effective SH&E programs and a great time to educate people about the role SH&E professionals play in keeping workplaces safe and workers healthy.

Support for this annual observance continues to grow, thanks to the dedicated efforts of ASSE members, chapters and regions. Here's a sampling of activities initiated in 2003:

  • The Gulf Coast Chapter formalized an alliance with the Houston Independent School District, OSHA (Texas region) and the Texas Engineering Extension Service to teach workplace safety to high-school students and their teachers.

  • Proclamations were received from the governors of Texas and Oklahoma, and from the mayors of Chicago, Houston and Des Plaines, IL.

  • The Columbia-Willamette Chapter distributed NAOSH Week posters and brochures throughout the northwestern U.S. Other associations, government agencies and businesses throughout this region publicized NAOSH Week in employee newsletters and other mediums.

  • The Greater Detroit Chapter hosted a major celebration at the Infrastructure Restoration Project site near Detroit. Several ASSE members worked on this project, which involved the renovation of 81 acres at a cost of $10 million. The project had no accidents in eight months.

  • ASSE sponsored a Safety-on-the-Job poster contest for children age five to 12. Asimilar contest was held this year, and the four winning posters will be featured on the NAOSH Week 2004 poster. Last year, the U.S. Dept. of Labor displayed the posters in its main lobby in Washington, DC. The Society also published the “Workplace Safety Guide for New Workers” brochure.

To get involved this year, consider these suggestions:

  • Print the proclamation template (available at, edit it to match your region, then send it along with a letter to your mayor or governor and urge him/her to support NAOSH Week 2004. Support the observance in a letter to the editor of your local newspaper.

  • Host an SH&E fair at work or conduct an open house that focuses on occupational SH&E. Invite suppliers, local dignitaries, clients and colleagues to participate.

  • Schedule safety demonstrations focused on safe work habits and best practices.

  • Promote NAOSH Week in your company newsletter. You might also insert messages in correspondence, memos and e-mails, and display NAOSH Week posters throughout your facility.

  • Distribute ASSE's free “Workplace Safety Guide for New Workers” brochure to local middle and high schools, colleges, technical schools and universities, as well as to groups such as the school board, PTA, libraries and local restaurants.

  • Invite classes to tour your operations. During the tour, highlight basic SH&E activities and discuss the importance of working safely.

  • Arrange to display NAOSH Week information at a local mall, and encourage retailers to display NAOSH Week posters.

  • Send a localized news release (available from ASSE) to your local media and be available for interviews about NAOSHWeek and injury prevention.

By continuing to educate all stakeholders—from CEOs to line workers, the public and legislators —we can continue to reduce the toll of workplace injuries, illnesses and fatalities. NAOSH Week may only occur once a year, but it's one of the many tools we can use to promote safety and the SH&E profession year round. Look for NAOSH Week materials online at or contact ASSE's Diane Hurns at (847) 768-3413; e-mail . Please join us in making NAOSH Week 2004 a success.

James "Skipper" Kendrick, CSP