229180 Addressing worker health disparities: NIOSH education and research centers' approaches and outcomes

Wednesday, November 10, 2010 : 12:30 PM - 12:50 PM

Lee S. Newman, MD, MA , Colorado School of Public Health, Mountain and Plains Education and Research Center, Aurora, CO
David Kotelchuck, PhD, MPH, CIH , School of Health Sciences, Environmental and Occupational Health Sciences, Hunter College, New York, NY
Lorraine Conroy, ScD, CIH , Environmental and Occupational Health Sciences Division, University of Illinois at Chicago, School of Public Health, Chicago, IL
Susan G. Gerberich, PhD , MCOHS/RIPRC/CVPC, Division of Environmental Health Sciences, School of Public Health, University of Minnesota, Minneapolis, MN
Noah S. Seixas, PhD CIH , Department of Environmental & Occupational Health Sciences, University of Washington, Seattle, WA
In addressing social injustice in the workplace, it is important to consider how to better support the needs of underserved worker populations. A number of barriers exist that result in inequities in the training and protection of minority workers, including, for example, lack of suitable educational programs that engage underserved workers. Obstacles exist that impede the recruitment, retention, and long term success of occupational health and safety professionals who come from underserved communities. Additionally, gaps exist in the portfolio of federally-funded research that focuses on, and which identifies, ways of reducing inequities in the workplace. This session will provide an historical perspective on the successes and failures of National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH) Education and Research Centers in meeting these needs. ERC directors from Washington, Minnesota, Colorado, Illinois and New York/New Jersey will present approaches that have been used in their regions to improve minority worker education, diversity of the occupational health and safety workforce, and target research and research training to address the needs of diverse, underserved workers. The speakers will focus on outcomes and on the challenges faced by educators and occupational health and safety professionals in identifying what approaches are most successful and sustainable. They will also discuss ways in which to measure the outcomes, evaluate the various approaches that have been employed and offer potential solutions to address some of the social justice needs of American workers. The session will include a panel discussion to promote dialogue with attendees.

Learning Areas:
Assessment of individual and community needs for health education
Diversity and culture
Implementation of health education strategies, interventions and programs
Occupational health and safety
Public health or related education
Public health or related research

Learning Objectives:
1. Discuss the scope of worker health disparities and its implications for social justice in the workplace 2. Analyze approaches that have been taken by NIOSH Education and Research Centers to reduce disparities for underserved worker populations, including worker education, recruitment and retention of occupational health and safety professionals, and directing research and research training to address social inequities in the workplace.

Keywords: Occupational Health Programs, Minorities

Presenting author's disclosure statement:

Qualified on the content I am responsible for because: I am director of a NIOSH-funded Education and Research Center and in that role, supervise diversity and outreach activities of the center.
Any relevant financial relationships? Yes

Name of Organization Clinical/Research Area Type of relationship
NIOSH Occupational Health Receive salary support from ERC grant awarded to my institution

I agree to comply with the American Public Health Association Conflict of Interest and Commercial Support Guidelines, and to disclose to the participants any off-label or experimental uses of a commercial product or service discussed in my presentation.