3243.0 Chemical Security: Protecting Workers and Communities from Intentional Releases

Monday, November 9, 2009: 12:30 PM
Approximately 7,000 U.S. chemical facilities pose a high risk to the lives, health and safety of workers and communities if attacked by terrorists. About 100 facilities each put 1 million or more people at risk. Many water treatment plants, power plants, oil refineries and other facilities have reduced or eliminated risks through use of more secure chemicals and/or processes. Many other facilities have yet to adopt more secure technologies. Americans should be secured against terrorist attacks on chemical facilities through a statute that provides for the following: 1) Use of more secure chemicals and processes 2) Coverage of all categories of facilities including water treatment plants 3) Participation of employees in chemical security and employee protection from misuse of background checks 4) Equal enforcement for all facilities and accountability for government 5) Allowing for states to set more protective standards 6) Agencies collaboration to avoid redundancy, consistency or gaps in security. In 2006, Congress passed a chemical security statute that lacks many of the provisions listed above. It expires in October, 2009. In March, 2008, the House Homeland Security Committee approved H.R. 5577 which addresses many of the flaws in the temporary law. However, the legislation did not come to the floor for a vote of either the full House or the Senate. By the time of the Annual Meeting, it is likely that Congress will have passed a permanent chemical security law. Our blue-green panel will comment on that law and the legislative process leading to its enactment.
Session Objectives: Differentiate between primary prevention in the form of safer and more secure chemicals and processes and secondary prevention in the form of gates, guards and gadgets. Assess the effectiveness of a blue-green coalition in passing legislation that integrates homeland security with occupational health and safety and green technology. Evaluate chemical security legislation according to criteria laid forth by the coalition.

12:54 PM
Chemical Security: Employee Training
John Alexander and Thomas H. McQuiston, DrPH
1:18 PM

See individual abstracts for presenting author's disclosure statement and author's information.

Organized by: Occupational Health and Safety
Endorsed by: Environment, Socialist Caucus

CE Credits: Medical (CME), Health Education (CHES), Nursing (CNE), Public Health (CPH)