Welcome to the Workplace Health Without Borders Forum.
This is where we post news items related to WHWB projects and issues that we believe are important to the international occupational hygiene community. In addition to this website, we also communicate with our membership through a monthly teleconference, using the Calliflower web-conferencing application. To learn how to connect to the teleconference, go to this page.
If you have registered with WHWB, please login using the Login link at upper right to post your ideas and comments on the forum. If you are not registered, but wish to do so, read this then send an email to the webmaster at: firstname.lastname@example.org. If you have comments on the web site, please contact the webmaster.
WHWB uses a teleconference medium called Calliflower to present our monthly teleconferences. We also use it for some of our sub-committee meetings. If you live in a major North American city or a capital city in many parts of the world, you can call into the meeting from a local telephone number. There is a list of these numbers on the calliflower.com website. For people who do not have a local (toll-free) number to call, there are two other options, calling into Calliflower using Skype, or calling using the Calliflower VOIP service, Calliflower Connect. The use of both of these alternatives is described on the Calliflower website, but many of our members have experienced difficulty using them. To help explain how to use the Calliflower Connect option, we have included a tutorial here. If you live in an area with broadband Internet service but no local Calliflower telephone number, we suggest you look at this page and try Calliflower Connect. Although I have a local dial-in number, I still prefer Calliflower Connect over using the telephone.
Marianne Levitsky and Lydia Renton of WHWB taught the OHTA course W201 – Basic Principles in Occupational Hygiene to a group in Tanzania at Muhimbili University during the week of February 23-27, 2015.
For photos sent to the membership, follow this link:
or click on the picture on the right.
Check back in a few days for more pictures and a post from Marianne and Lydia describing their experiences.
Construction was ranked as the third largest economic sector in Nepal in 2006. High demand for building materials is in turn creating a huge demand for cheap bricks, often with little consideration for the human or environmental consequences. Due to the seasonal nature of the job and the tough and demanding working conditions, brick kiln workers often come from marginalised and poor communities and have few employment alternatives. Read more …
Karen Messing, PhD, presented a thought-provoking lecture on occupational hygiene and ergonomics at the Toronto Reference Library last week – What Can Scientists Learn about Work from the People Who Do it? During her career in molecular genetics and ergonomics at Université du Québec à Montréal, she has met factory workers, cleaners, checkout clerks, bank tellers, food servers, nurses, teachers and many others who were suffering as a result of their work.
The scientists and occupational health experts were little help in reducing their pain. Dr Messing argues that the rules for scientific practice make it hard to see what really makes workers sick. Studies are often seriously flawed and workers are left out of the conversation. It is only by listening to workers and attempting to thoroughly understand their work that we can prevent injury and illness.
In recognition of her work, Dr Messing was presented with the 2014 William P Yant award by the AIHA. Her recent book, Pain and Prejudice, a bold personal history about her encounters with worker pain, is available through on-line vendors. A followup book is in the works.
Submitted by Marguerite Pilger
I spoke to a WHWB member the other day who said he would like to post to our forum, but he had forgotten his login password. If this has happened to you, it is very easy to reset your password. Simply click on the login link at the upper right and when the login page appears, click on Lost your password? below the login box. Enter your User name or email address and answer the skill testing question. A new password will be emailed to you. If you use a different email address from the one you registered with, you will of course not get a new password.
The new password will probably be something difficult to remember. If you wish to do so, you can login using it, and then change it to something more easily remembered in your profile. Your profile is accessed by moving your mouse over the Howdy Username in the upper right corner. Just remember to click the blue update button after making the change. If you have a question about this, just click the Leave a comment link below. Happy posting!
A new NIOSH factsheet is now available to help law enforcement professionals who may be exposed to Ebola. Although addressed to law enforcement professionals, this fact sheet may be of interest to other groups of workers who may have incidental contact with individuals with Ebola. The fact sheet explains the risk of exposure and ways these workers can protect themselves from exposure. It may be downloaded here.