September 13, 2022 / Ryanna Quazi

Insights from the AIHA Public Policy Issue Preference and Motivation Survey

In August, 146 AIHA members responded to AIHA’s 2022 Public Policy Issue Preference and Motivation Survey. Respondents were asked to identify the issues they felt were top priorities for AIHA's government relations department to focus on.

Here are the top ten priority issues identified in the survey:

  1. workforce development (for example, encouraging students to pursue careers in OEHS and strengthening professional development for those currently in the profession)
  2. indoor environmental quality
  3. disaster preparedness, response, and recovery
  4. heat stress
  5. noise and occupational hearing protection
  6. professional title protection (for example, promoting and protecting the CIH credential)
  7. sensor technology (for example, research, development, and deployment)
  8. outdoor air quality
  9. mold
  10. cannabis

The top five issues (workforce development, IEQ, disaster preparedness and response, heat stress, and occupational hearing protection) will form the core of the government relations department's actions. The last four issues (professional title protection, sensor technology, outdoor air quality, and mold) are lower priorities that we will focus on when there is bandwidth or when they overlap with the top five priority issues. The last issue, cannabis, will not be given priority above the higher-ranking topics.

Previous AIHA Action on Priority Issues

AIHA has previously supported legislation at both the state and federal levels that falls within the priority issues identified in the survey.

An example of such legislation is AIHA’s support of Virginia Senate Bill 161. Under this bill, the Virginia Department of Education will work with the Department of Health and other relevant stakeholders to develop guidelines that schools will use to teach coaches, student-athletes, and parents about heat-related illnesses and injuries. This bill was signed into law by Virginia Governor Youngkin in April 2022. AIHA’s letter of support can be found on the AIHA website (PDF).

AIHA also previously supported New York Senate Bill 1164A, which would require the New York state commissioner of labor to establish standards and training requirements to help protect delivery workers from heat-related illnesses. It would also require employers to develop and implement a heat-related illness prevention plan and maintain records of employee heat-related illnesses and deaths. View AIHA’s letter of support on the AIHA website (PDF).

It is important to note that even though AIHA's government relations department has taken previous actions that align with some of the survey results, we intend to use these results to further improve our prioritization of top issues that are important to members.

State Action on Priority Issues

Further analysis by AIHA's government relations staff shows that the following states have taken the most legislative action on the top issues identified in the survey. The following list ranks the states from highest to lowest number of legislative actions on particular issues, with number 1 being the highest:


  1. Alaska, Arizona, Michigan
  2. Oregon
  3. Massachusetts, Minnesota, Washington State
  4. Florida
  5. California

Heat Stress

  1. Alaska, Arizona, Michigan
  2. Oregon
  3. Massachusetts, Minnesota, Washington State
  4. Virginia
  5. Florida


  1. New Jersey
  2. Hawaii
  3. Oklahoma
  4. Virginia, New York, Mississippi
  5. Massachusetts, Connecticut

Workforce Development

  1. Massachusetts
  2. Illinois
  3. Michigan
  4. New York, Pennsylvania, Ohio, California


  1. Michigan
  2. Oregon
  3. Massachusetts, Minnesota, Washington State
  4. Maryland, New York, North Dakota, Ohio, Oklahoma
  5. New Mexico

This analysis will help prioritize our actions even further. For example, when looking at IEQ-related issues, AIHA's government relations will focus on legislation in New Jersey, Hawaii, Oklahoma, Virginia, New York, Mississippi, Massachusetts, and Connecticut.

Note that this information is simply a guide to help AIHA's government relations department prioritize our activities. We will still consider acting on relevant bills in states that don’t appear on these lists, and we will use the survey results to make the greatest impact possible on issues important to our members.

Ryanna Quazi

Ryanna Quazi is AIHA’s advocacy associate.


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