August 12, 2023

A message from AIHA President Dina Siegel

Dear AIHA Members,

I hope this letter finds you in good health. I’m writing to share some important updates and exciting opportunities with you.

In June, I had the honor of attending OH2023: The Workplace Health Protection Conference, organized by the British Occupational Hygiene Society (BOHS). The speakers at this conference covered a range of occupational and environmental health and safety issues, including challenges with wearable monitoring devices, better noise risk reduction practices, the impacts of climate change, improved local exhaust ventilation solutions, Legionella management, and mental health in workplaces. Other speakers highlighted advances in exposure science aligning directly with AIHA’s Improving Exposure Judgment initiative. The conference also addressed the continued shortage of qualified OEHS professionals in the United Kingdom (and the United States). I remain optimistic that AIHA’s continued close partnership with BOHS will help both countries build a successful pipeline of future practitioners.

During the conference, I spent time with Trace Bence, president of the Australian Institute of Occupational Hygienists (AIOH), and Maharshi Mehta, president of the International Occupational Hygiene Association (IOHA). Trace’s sobering presentation on engineered stone health issues in Australia and Maharshi’s discussion of IOHA’s various initiatives targeted at developing countries reminded me of the shared challenges faced by workers in both developed and emerging economies. I greatly enjoyed presentations such as these, as they resonated with AIHA’s commitment to promoting OEHS globally, in part by providing discounted pricing on selected resources to practitioners in economically developing countries. Furthermore, through AIHA’s close relationship with AIOH, and as a member organization of IOHA, we will continue to make progress towards our vision of a world where all workers are healthy and safe.

AIHA Connect 2024 Call for Proposals
I’m excited to share that AIHA has opened its call for proposals for AIHA Connect 2024! The AIHA Connect Conference Program Committee is seeking proposals for professional development courses, education sessions, case studies, scientific research presentations, professional posters, education pop-ups, and student presentations and posters. This is a fantastic chance to become a thought leader and contribute to growth and knowledge-sharing within our OEHS community. The deadline for submissions is September 15. Mark your calendars and get ready to share your expertise and insights.

On the subject of the conference, AIHA’s YouTube channel has released two new videos covering AIHce EXP 2023. “Mark of Excellence” features AIHA Fellows and award winners. In “Expo Highlights,” our partners showcase some of their top-notch products and services.

DEI Virtual Conference – Embracing Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion
On October 16–20, AIHA University will hold a virtual conference focusing on diversity, equity, and inclusion in the workplace through the lens of occupational and environmental health and safety. The program will cover a variety of topics, including equitable PPE considerations for a diverse workforce, the impact of code-switching, microaggressions and unconscious bias in the workplace, and workplace ally training. In our commitment to fostering an inclusive and supportive environment within the OEHS profession, I encourage you to secure your spot and register for this event. Moreover, if your organization is interested in partnering with AIHA for this conference, please contact Laura Cilano Garcia, AIHA’s program director of strategic partnerships.

Free Workshops in Partnership with FCRI
AIHA is partnering with the Foundation for Chemistry Research and Initiatives (FCRI) on Many Paths – One Goal, a series of free workshops on occupational risk assessment. These workshops aim to enhance understanding of differing approaches to risk assessment used by the Environmental Protection Agency and the OEHS profession. Experts from both EPA and traditional IH receive a platform to discuss methodological issues and refine assessment approaches. The first three workshops explored the diverse facets of occupational risk assessment and delved into means of optimizing the use of industrial hygiene exposure data and near-field exposure modeling. The next two workshops will take place on September 21 and November 9. These will enhance participants’ understanding of methods for evaluating dermal exposure and risk characterization and management.

Volunteering Opportunities
Our community thrives on collaboration and engagement. I encourage you to explore volunteer opportunities on AIHA’s open calls page. Your involvement can make a significant impact, and I believe that together, we can make our workplaces and communities healthier.

Thank you for your continuous support and dedication to AIHA. It’s my privilege to serve as your president, and I’m committed to working with you to advance our mission of creating healthier workplaces and a healthier world.

Best regards,

AIHA President