What is AIHA?
The American Industrial Hygiene Association (AIHA) was formed in 1939 and is a 501c6 non-profit organization incorporated in Illinois. An elected governing Board of Directors manages the Association. The Association's overall objective is to help ensure that work-related occupational and environmental health and safety (OEHS) hazards are anticipated and eliminated or controlled. It seeks to achieve this by:
- Promoting the profession and OEHS practice in the industry, government, and the general community
- Improving the practice of OEHS and the knowledge, competence, and standing of its practitioners
- Providing a global forum for the exchange of OEHS information and ideas
- Representing the profession nationally and internationally
Our mission statement defines who we are and why we exist. It gives us something to work towards daily.
Our Mission: Empowering those who apply scientific knowledge to protect all workers from occupational hazards.
Our vision statement acts as an internal compass, expressing what we hope to be the result if we continue to successfully fulfill our organization’s mission.
Our Vision: A world where all workers are healthy and safe.
Who are OEHS Professionals?
OEHS professionals (also known as industrial hygienists) practice the science of anticipating, recognizing, evaluating, controlling, and confirming protection from hazardous workplace conditions that may cause workers injury or illness. Through a continuous improvement cycle of planning, doing, checking, and acting, OEHS professionals make sure workplaces are healthy and safe.
What is OEHS?
Depending upon where in the world you are, the Occupational, Environmental, or Industrial Hygiene Professions (generally known as OEHS) are defined as the art and science dedicated to the Anticipation, Recognition, Evaluation, Control, and Confirmation of industrial hygiene and environmental stressors in, or arising from, the workplace that may result in injury, illness, impairment, or affect the well-being of workers and members of the community. These stressors are varied and include biological, chemical, physical, ergonomic, and psycho-social factors.
Our Core Values:
- Risk Mitigation & Illness Prevention: We provide the expertise that helps protect all workers from occupational hazards. AIHA members strive to anticipate and identify hazards and reduce the risks that may lead to occupational illness and injury as a fundamental principle of industrial hygiene and the broader occupational and environmental health and safety (OEHS) profession.
- Science-Based Public Policy: We advocate for science-based public policies. AIHA members develop public policy recommendations by collaborating with scientific and technical communities to ensure that healthy and safe work conditions and environments are provided for all workers and communities.
- Workers & Communities: We respect workers and communities. AIHA members advocate for workers' health and well-being and the communities in which they live and work.
- Continuous Improvement in the Workplace: We support employers and workers. AIHA members recognize and advocate that continuous improvement in OEHS is complementary and beneficial to business excellence.
- Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion: We respect our members. AIHA’s Board of Directors, volunteers, members, and staff conduct the Association's business with respect for diversity in its myriad forms (including diversity of opinion), transparent and open communication, equity, inclusion, and due consideration member’s limited volunteer time.
Industrial Hygiene is both a science and art devoted to the anticipation, recognition, evaluation, control, and confirmation of those environmental factors or stresses arising in or from the workplace that may cause sickness, impaired health, and well-being, or significant discomfort among workers or among citizens of the community.
More than half of our nearly 8,500 members of the Association are certified industrial hygienists (CIHs), and many hold other professional designations.
Consider that in the United States:
- Every day, approximately 275 people die from occupational injuries and illnesses in the United States alone.
- Approximately 95,000 workers died in 2017 from occupational diseases.
- About 3.5 million workers suffered occupational injuries or illnesses in 2017 alone. These were just the reported injuries and illnesses – the actual total numbers may be even higher.
- 5,250: The number of recorded workplace fatalities from injuries in the U.S. in 2018. This was a 2% increase from 2017.
And consider that globally:
- Each year, approximately 2.7 million workers die from occupational injuries and illnesses.
- One worker dies from occupational causes every 11 seconds.
- U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics. National Census of Fatal Occupational Injuries, 2018
- AFL-CIO. Death on the Job, The Toll of Neglect: A National and State-by-State Profile of Worker Safety and Health in the United States (2019)
- ILO, 2013; WHO, 2013 and 2016; Armed Conflict, 2016 + Homicide, 2012 (WHO) + Terrorism, 2016 (Statista)
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AIHA's Strategic Plan
An outline of the 5 critical domains of focus for AIHA through 2021.