Letter to AIHA Members: Important Update on AIHA's Branding and Outreach
I am writing to update you on AIHA's brand evolution which as you may recall was launched in June. As discussed at our Townhall Meeting on June 30, the purpose of our multi-faceted public outreach campaign is to raise awareness about the broader defined occupational and environmental health and safety (OEHS) profession. Through targeted messaging initially aimed at business C-suite executives and students of all ages, we will educate these audiences about the value of OEHS to the corporate bottom-line as well as to recruit future generations into the field.
Following extensive feedback from AIHA members, we refined our "About Us" statement. Simply put, this will better define who we are and will appear on our websites, in press releases, and on all promotional materials.
AIHA is the association for scientists and professionals committed to preserving and ensuring occupational and environmental health and safety (OEHS) in the workplace and community. Founded in 1939, we support our members with our expertise, networks, comprehensive education programs and other products and services that help them maintain the highest professional and competency standards. More than half of AIHA's nearly 8,500 members are Certified Industrial Hygienists, and many hold other professional designations. AIHA serves as a resource for those employed across the public and private sectors, as well as to the communities in which they work.
We’d like to point out the following changes:
- The term "environmental" is now included in the lead sentence about the profession. We have pivoted to the more inclusive term “OEHS”, not just OHS, as it better reflects the work a large subset of the profession does in addressing indoor environmental quality.
- We decided not to include descriptors such as "American" or "national" in front of "association" in the lead sentence, so as not to limit our geographic focus. While arguably we are US-based, AIHA continues to expand its influence around the world.
Visit www.aiha.org/about-aiha to view this new About Us statement, as well as supporting language that clarifies What is the AIHA, Who are OEHS Professionals, and What is OEHS. We conclude by listing our core organizational values. I want to thank the dozens of members who weighed in on our descriptor statement and the board task group of myself, Dina Siegel, CIH, Lucinette Alvarado, CIH and Bernie Fontaine, CIH, CSP, FAIHA who volunteered to revise and update the statement.
A New Portal for Worker Health and Safety
Last month, we launched a new micro-website dedicated to worker health and safety aimed at educating non-OEHS/IH professionals and stakeholders about the business value of OEHS/IH in the workplace: www.workerhealthsafety.org. This microsite (a small off-shoot of the AIHA.org website) will encourage businesses to make their employees' health and safety a top priority, not just simply to be compliant with OSHA requirements. The site currently provides educational resources on health risks in the construction, chemical manufacturing, and emergency response sectors. The resources provided on the new website have already been reported by media outlets, such as Modern Contractor Solutions, Chemical Engineering, Occupational Health and Safety Magazine, and EHS Daily Advisor.
We are grateful to the various volunteers who raised their hands as “brand ambassadors” helping us develop and review the content for this new external-audience-facing microsite: Rick Fulwiler, ScD, CIH, CSHM, FAIHA; Janet Keyes, CIH, FAIHA; Barb Epstien, MPH, CIH, FAIHA; Lisa Capicik, CSP, CHST; Georgi Popov, PhD, QEP, CSP, ARM, SMS,C MC, FAIHA; Dyron Hamlin, CIH; Glenn Millner PhD; and Nancy McClellan, MPH., CIH, CHMM
We are working on adding additional worker health and safety resources to the platform and are open to what AIHA volunteer groups recommend. To share your suggestions, please reach out to Sue Marchese, Managing Director of Marketing and Communications firstname.lastname@example.org.
Launching a New Platform for Careers in OEHS Science
We are in the process of setting up another microsite, OEHSCareers.org, that will focus on educating students of all ages interested in STEM about pursuing a career in the profession. The platform will provide information about careers in OEHS/IH, how to pursue them, and the knowledge, skills and abilities necessary. Here we’ll also reference our many award-winning “IH Heroes” comics, new web app, and I AM IH videos. We will keep you apprised when this microsite launches.
Recognition for our work
I want to conclude this letter with some great news. In early August, AIHA was featured in ASAE's "100 Associations That Will Save the World" in the Safety category. Thank you to all for your hard work in keeping workers healthy and safe. As articulated in our new tagline, healthier workplaces will lead to a healthier world.
Please feel free to share these resources and information with your colleagues and peers.
Lindsay Cook, CIH, CSP, FAIHA