The Joint Health and Safety Committee is comprised of bargaining unit and management representatives and is chaired by the Director of Environmental Health and Safety (see list of committee members). One of the bargaining unit members shall be designated by the Union as Chief Union Safety Representative for Local 34 and one member shall be designated as Chief Union Safety Representative for Local 35 for the purpose of serving as focal points for communications and coordination of activities addressed by this Committee.
This Committee will meet monthly, or at a schedule determined by the Committee, to review, discuss and make recommendations related to safety and health issues at the University. By mutual agreement, the Local 34 and Local 35 portions of the Committee may meet separately with University selected members of the Committee in lieu of the regular monthly meeting. The two Chief Union Safety Representatives shall meet with the Director of Environmental Health and Safety in advance of the meetings to discuss the agenda.
Committee meetings shall normally be held during working hours and employees serving on this Committee will be paid by the University for any of their work time spent at meetings of such Committee or when carrying out functions authorized by the Committee during their normally scheduled work hours.
Among other things, the Committee shall:
- Make recommendations for the correction or elimination of unsafe or harmful conditions and practices. Within a reasonable time after the Committee makes a recommendation, the University will advise the Committee that it intends to accept the recommendation in full or in part and on what timetable. If the University does not intend to accept the recommendation in full or in part, it will give the reasons for its decision or communicate that it needs more time to consider the recommendation.
- Review reports of occupational injury and illness.
- Recommend rules and procedures for the prevention of accidents and illness and for the promotion of the health and safety of employees.
- Recommend topics for safety and health training of supervisors, union stewards and employees.
- Distribute information to employees designed to educate and inform about to their health and safety while at work.
Unit Safety Committees
The agreement with Local 34 and Local 35 also encourages the creation of Unit Safety Committees (USC). Each Unit Safety Committee consists of five to seven members, including management and staff employees. Each USC will appoint a safety coordinator as the chairperson to represent its group. The goals of the USC are to improve safety awareness, improve communication on safety issues, reduce accident rates and implement safe methods and practices. USCs play an important role in the team effort of maintaining and enhancing workplace safety. Their principal function is to help foster safe conditions and practices and to assist Environmental Health and Safety, upon request, in accident investigations and to improve safety in the workplace.