AIHA to Hold Congressional Briefing Protecting American Workers from Silica Dust


The American Industrial Hygiene Association (AIHA®) will hold a congressional briefing exploring the Occupational Safety and Health Administration’s (OSHA) silica rule. 
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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE:
Release No. SPR-17-0208-01

CONTACT:
Gabriella Lehimdjian, AIHA Communications 

FALLS CHURCH, Va. (February 8, 2017) — On Feb. 15, the American Industrial Hygiene Association (AIHA) will hold a congressional briefing on Capitol Hill that focuses on the Occupational Safety and Health Administration’s (OSHA) silica rule. The meeting, which will be held from 10:00 to 11:00 a.m. ET in room 1540-A in the Longworth House Office Building, will also serve as a case study of the importance of worker health and safety. 

Nearly 2.3 million American workers are exposed to respirable crystalline silica, or silica dust. From 2005 to 2014, these exposures resulted in or contributed to more than 1,000 deaths from silicosis, as well as additional deaths from lung cancer, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD), and kidney disease. Those at greatest risk work in industries such as construction, hydraulic fracturing, foundries, glass manufacturing, landscaping, and dental laboratories. In response and in concert with developments in the science of worker health and safety, OSHA issued a final rule to protect American workers from this hazardous dust. The agency projects annual net benefits of $3.8 to $7.7 billion and estimates that the rule will save more than 600 lives while preventing related illnesses.
 
AIHA Past President Daniel H. Anna, PhD, CIH, CSP, and David Michaels, PhD, MPH, who is a professor in the Department of Environmental and Occupational Health at the Milken Institute School of Public Health of George Washington University and former Assistant Secretary of Labor for OSHA, will address attendees of this briefing. Other participants include Reps. Darren Soto, D-Fla., Joe Courtney, D-Conn., and Carol Shea-Porter, D-N.H. AIHA will live stream the briefing via Twitter at 10 a.m. ET on February 15. Followers can join the conversation using #SilicaBriefing. In addition, AIHA will post a video of the event on February 16. For more information, please contact Mark Ames, AIHA Director of Government Relations, at mames@aiha.org.  

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About AIHA® 
Founded in 1939, the American Industrial Hygiene Association (AIHA) is the premier association of occupational and environmental health and safety professionals. AIHA’s 10,000 members play a crucial role on the front line of worker health and safety every day. Members represent a cross-section of industry, private business, labor, government and academia. More information is available at www.aiha.org.