July 1, 2020

Quick Takes 2020 July

Important Dates and Deadlines:


AIHA Awards Task Force

Deadline to apply is July 3 at 11:59 p.m. ET. AIHA values the profession and our members by providing opportunities and resources to share about the profession and recognizing those professionals who have exemplified excellence and leadership. AIHA Named Awards and Recognitions are given to industrial hygienists and other occupational and environmental health and safety professionals who have gone above and beyond the call of duty in contributing to the growth and development of the profession.

The purpose of the AIHA Awards Task Force is to:

• Assess current awards and recognition
• Recommend ways to broaden, re-define or sunset of awards
• Consider proposals for new awards
• Brainstorm ways to increase nominations
• Offer recommendations to streamline the Nominating Committee Review Process

Legionella JTA Survey

This survey contains a comprehensive list of important tasks and knowledge, skills, and abilities (KSAs) necessary for occupational/environmental health professionals to efficiently assess and manage the risks associated with Legionella in the workplace and the community at large. This survey is open to both members and non-members.

Open Call for ABET EHS Criteria Working Group

Online applications will be accepted until 5:00 PM ET on Wednesday, July 15. Self-nominations will be accepted.

AIHA has served as a co-lead organization along with ASSP for EHS Generalist academic program ABET accreditation. AIHA and ASSP have agreed to the need to review and update these criteria, and consequently this new ABET EHS Criteria Working Group is being formed.

AIHA Volunteer Groups Officers Training

The following training opportunities are available for all volunteer groups officers – click on the links below to learn more, as well as to add these events to your calendar. All volunteer group officers are encouraged to participate, especially new officers.

Catalyst Online Community—Wednesday, July 29 at 2:00 p.m.-3:00 p.m. (ET)

Officers Training: Roles & Responsibilities—Wednesday, August 26 at 2:00 p.m.-3:00 p.m. (ET)

Next Synergist Product DEMO Scheduled for July 21

Synergist Product Demos are short presentations of practical tips for using a specific product, similar to the demonstrations that take place at conference exhibits. The next Product Demo will be held on Tuesday, July 21, when Gensuite's Susan Boone will highlight the company's industrial hygiene module. Registration is free. Learn More.


AIHA Announces 2020-2021 Board of Directors

AIHA announced its 2020-2021 Board of Directors during the Annual Membership Meeting on June 11, 2020. Lindsay Cook, CIH, CSP, FAIHA will serve as the new President of AIHA. Follow the link to see the roster of members of the 2020-2021 AIHA Board of Directors.

AIHA Frameworks—Free Resources!

AIHA Frameworks outline the knowledge and skills a competent person should possess and be able to demonstrate in a specific topic or specialty. Broken into three categories: Strategic, Competency, and Technical, these free reference materials are accessible to OHS professionals at all stages of their career. Download your free copy today…or pass them onto someone you know!

Apps and Digital Tools from NIOSH

The NIOSH apps and software tools provide the practicing industrial hygienist with quick and easy access to the information necessary to evaluate exposure profiles and determine if the exposures are acceptable, not acceptable or if more data is needed to make the determination of acceptability. Follow the link to see these free available apps and tools.

In Case You Missed It: "Lessons from Our Reader Survey"

Ed Rutkowski, editor-in-chief of The Synergist, writes: "In February, AIHA conducted the latest in its series of Synergist reader surveys. The survey asked respondents to assess both the print and digital versions of The Synergist magazine, as well as the Synergist Weekly and Synergist Newswire e-newsletters, and the SynergistNOW blog. In this post, I'll focus on what survey respondents had to say about the magazine." Read More.

COVID-19 and the Back to Work Safely ™ Outreach and Engagement Project

Goal: Get AIHA’s Back to Work Safely™ guidelines into the hands of as many employers, workers, governmental and other community leaders as possible ASAP. Here are the specific audiences we’re targeting our outreach and engagement to. If you’re interested in working on this project, please send an email to Mark Ames, AIHA’s director of government relations, at [email protected].

COVID-19 and Natural Disasters

The combination of natural disasters and COVID-19 create tough challenges that occupational health and safety professionals are well-equipped to address. AIHA is exploring developing guidance or related documents on natural disasters and COVID-19, perhaps with a focus on evacuation care centers. In the meantime, here are some helpful resources:

• AIHA’s Disaster Response Resource Center: https://www.aiha.org/public-re...

• AIHA’s Guidance Document on Health and Safety Issues in Natural Disasters: (PDF) https://aiha-assets.sfo2.digit...

• AIHA’s White Paper on the Industrial Hygienists’ Role and Responsibilities in Emergency Preparedness and Response: (PDF) https://aiha-assets.sfo2.digit...

• AIHA SynergistNOW Blog post entitled “Natural Disasters, COVID-19, and Occupational Health and Safety”: https://www.aiha.org/blog/natu...

IH Careers for Veterans

AIHA continues to support efforts to encourage both traditional and non-traditional students to pursue careers in OHS. For instance, AIHA is seeking to better understand the needs of the veteran community and how we can help meet them. To begin collecting this information, AIHA has created a new Catalyst community on this topic.

Changing the Narrative to Protect Vulnerable Workers

Health professionals’ success in battling the COVID-19 pandemic depends on that of the story we tell about it, and we are entering a new phase of the narrative. Although the risk of COVID-19 is still present in every community, the burden of the disease is increasingly being pushed on workers—including the staff in a restaurant—who have to rely on the actions of others to maintain their own safety.

Share Your COVID-19 Stories

We want to hear your stories about keeping workers healthy and safe in the midst of COVID-19. Share via social media and tag AIHA so we can amplify your message, and remember to tag #IAmIH.

AIHA Coronavirus Outbreak Resource Center

This resource center is updated daily with inks to official resources regarding public health resources available for IH/OEHS professionals, and others working to support front-line workers and personnel fighting the pandemic. AIHA would like to thank the volunteer community for their contributions to this resource center. AIHA has been in the news for all our volunteers’ efforts and members’ expertise during the pandemic. Check out the curated newsfeed on this page (incl. WSJ, Washington Examiner, CNBC, etc.) to follow the coverage.


Members Making a Difference: Laurence Svirchev, CIH

Protecting the health and safety of people at work has never been as critical as it is now during the COVID-19 pandemic. Our members have used their expertise and knowledge to collaborate online, at work, in communities, and in households. Take Laurence Svirchev, CIH, an AIHA member since 2003, and AIHA’s ambassador to China. In early February, he appealed to the AIHA membership through Catalyst for donations of PPE that would go directly to emergency medical staff in Wuhan. Read about his altruistic effort.

Get Your Company to Join AIHA and Save Big Time

Did you know that AIHA offers organizational membership? And right now, your company can take advantage of 50% off the standard rate of $999 until the end of the year. AIHA Organizational membership includes 3 individual memberships (access to Catalyst, subscriptions to Synergist & JOEHS, CareerAdvantage, and more) and organizational benefits such as:

• a webinar of choice

• one AIHce OnDemand bundle

• a listing on the online Organizational Membership directory

• 10% 1st Marketplace publication order

• use of AIHA Organizational Member logo

• and an Organizational Membership Certificate

Check out the Organizational Membership page and get 50% off by joining today!

Calling All Students

Our student members get the best discount on membership! At $32 for a full year (almost 75% off full membership!), you can’t beat that price for all the member benefits you get including access to the Mentoring Program and CareerAdvantage, not to mention the opportunity to network with industry experts and leadership opportunities that are available. Check out this video from student member, Jacob Shedd on the benefits of student membership. Share AIHA student membership with your classmates and friends and expand your network to others!


Pivoting in Times of a Pandemic—LS Presentation

Larry Sloan, CEO will be virtually presenting to the Connecticut River Valley LS in October on a updated AIHA National update on how the business has and is being affected by COVID, the past, present, and future shifts in both the internal (day-to-day) and external lenses. Some topics that will be included are on member programming, the brand refresh, collaboration with allied associations, vision for the future and more. If your local section is interested in inviting the CEO or Board to do a virtual presentation at your next LS meeting, email Thursa La.


Invite the AIHA CEO or Member of the Board of Directors to Your Next Local Section Meeting

Many local sections are looking for ways in which to still connect with their members, and to provide PDCs during COVID-19. Larry Sloan, CEO will be virtually presenting to the Connecticut River Valley LS in October on a updated AIHA National update on how the business has and is being affected by COVID. Members of the AIHA Board, the AIHA CEO and/or the AIHA Director, Government Relations is available to make virtual presentations. If you’re interested, please contact Thursa La to schedule.

Local Section Virtual Business Meeting

The annual Local Section Business Meeting was conducted virtually this year due to COVID-19. John Moore, CIH, CSP and Chair of the Local Section Advisory Group led the business meeting. Ted Gerber, a professional facilitator led the attendees through a session entitled, Managing Effective Teams.


AIHA is looking for stories on how local sections are coping with COVID-19. How is your local section keeping members engaged and what plans do you have for any future PDCs and/or meetings? Share your stories so we can share them with other local section officers.

AIHA’s New Brand Evolution and Impact on Local Sections

By now you've probably heard about the new AIHA branding and public awareness campaign that was announced June 1. These are truly exciting times for the association and profession! The AIHA Marketing department has prepared a few reference tools specifically for the Local and Student Local Sections to help answer some questions you may have and to guide you as we fully roll-out the rebrand. If you have any general questions or want to watch some videos about AIHA's Brand Evolution, please click here.

Growing the Grassroots and Helping Local Sections Achieve Their Government Relations Goals

In January of this year, AIHA leadership asked every Local Section to establish one government relations goal for 2020. Many Sections were either in the process of establishing their goals or had planned to meet with students in elementary, middle or high schools, speaking to them about young worker health and safety and/or encouraging them to pursue careers in OHS. Other Sections had planned to attend or host science, technology, engineering, and mathematics or career fairs. Others had planned to invite policymakers to attend or present at their meetings and conferences. All of this changed when the pandemic hit. Local Sections are now adjusting their government relations goals to reflect the new world we find ourselves in. Consider reaching out to your local schools or districts to offer a virtual presentation about OHS/IH and Teen Workplace Health and Safety. Check out AIHA’s FREE Outreach materials to make this so easy and interesting for the next generation of IHs!


Join the Mentoring Program!

Part of your membership includes access to the mentoring program. Enroll as a mentee and get matched with a mentor who can help you with your professional development, advise you on career pathways, job placement, and networking opportunities! Watch this mentoring townhall video for information on the program and how to enroll!

AIHA Volunteer Community

You don’t have to wait to be invited! Check out the AIHA volunteer community and consider joining one today. This is an excellent opportunity to acquire new skills, expand your network, and be a part of the community that is giving back to the profession to advance a healthier workplace, a healthier world.


Share Your Expertise at AIHce EXP 2021

AIHce EXP is now accepting proposals through September 23, 2020! Consider presenting a PDC, education session, pop-up session, or poster to introduce your colleagues to the latest OEHS information, trends, technology, and best practices. Before you get started, check out our helpful tips on how to put your best foot forward when submitting your proposal, based on the needs and wants of our attendees.

2020 UPDATE: Developing and Maintaining a Laboratory Quality Management System

This online course was recently updated in compliance with ISO/IEC 17025:2017 and the AIHA Laboratory Accreditation Programs (AIHA LAP, LLC) requirements for implementing a QA/QC program. Learn More.

Demonstrate your Stewardship and Sustainability Knowledge and Expertise with New CPPS™ Credential

The Product Stewardship Society® and the Board for Global EHS Credentialing® have announced the new Certified Professional Product Steward™ (CPPS) certification. The CPPS is the first credential of its kind and will provide product stewardship professionals with an opportunity to distinguish their expertise and build professional credibility within their organizations.

Risk Assessment Education & Resources

Lead the way to a healthier workplace with risk assessment resources from AIHA University. Choose from a wide variety of price points and learning styles to integrate risk assessment into your OHS management plan with a self-study course, webinar/presentation recording, publication, or framework.


First Virtual Fun Run a Success

Thanks to everyone who participated in the first AIHF virtual fun run and to our generous sponsors for funding the event, with all proceeds going to the Foundation. We enjoyed seeing everyone’s pictures and videos posted on our Facebook page- like our page to follow us! With gratitude, we're happy to share that the AIHF Virtual Fun Run has raised up to $22,740 in scholarships for deserving OHS students.

Thank you to our generous donors, Fun Run participants and sponsors! (Premier: Amazon Silver: Alliant, REPSS, Inc., SevenGen Bronze: ALS, Half Draft Acres, R&R Environmental, WHWB)

Get Your AIHce EXP- Atlanta Conference Pins

We may not have been able to meet in Atlanta, but you can still get your hands on a commemorative conference pin to add to your collection for only $10 with all proceeds going to the Foundation. You can proudly wear your decorative pin during your virtual meetings! Email Thursa La for more information.


AIHA’s Back to Work Safely™ Guidelines

Our goal is to get these guidelines into the hands of as many employers, workers, governmental and other community leaders as possible ASAP. Here are the specific audiences we’re targeting our outreach and engagement to local, county, state, and federal government officials; Chambers of Commerce; Rotary Clubs; other professional associations; and local news outlets. If you’re interested in working on this project, please contact Mark Ames, AIHA’s Director of Government Relations.

COVID-19 and Natural Disasters

The combination of natural disasters and COVID-19 create tough challenges that occupational health and safety professionals are well-equipped to address. AIHA is exploring developing guidance or related documents on natural disasters and COVID-19, perhaps with a focus on evacuation care centers. Contact Mark Ames if you want to get involved.

ETS in VA for Occupational Exposure to COVID-19

Important news for anyone working in Virginia: Today the Virginia Safety and Health Codes voted to proceed with the adoption of an emergency temporary standard (ETS) to protect workers from occupational exposure to COVID-19.

OSHA Issues Guidance for Non-Essential Businesses Returning to Work

Adding to previously-issued Guidance on Preparing Workplaces for COVID-19, OSHA has issued new Guidance on Returning to Work. The new, 27-page document is focused on helping employees and non-essential businesses as they return to work. The guidance discusses reopening phases, guiding principles, examples of how to implement occupational health and safety practices, applicable OSHA standards, frequently asked questions, and how to contact OSHA for assistance.

FEMA Releases Mass Care/Emergency Assistance Pandemic Planning Considerations Guide

Just in time for the 2020 Atlantic hurricane season (June 1 – November 30), FEMA has issued a new guidance document entitled “Mass Care/Emergency Assistance Pandemic Planning Considerations”. The document’s target audience includes State, Tribal, territorial, and local emergency planning entities, non-governmental organizations active in disasters, and providers of emergency support services.


Have You Downloaded the New Catalyst App Yet?

Make life easier by connecting on Catalyst from your mobile device. Stay up-to-date on the latest news, events, and community happenings. View and create forum threads, check your notifications, and manage your account via our brand-new app. Now available on Google Play and the Apple App Store.

Online Community Resource

The Catalyst Open Forum is a member-driven portal featuring a wealth of information and resources. Check out the top discussion threads going on right now or start your own!

Cloth Face Mask Research - Cullen Charles Whittaker, CIH, CSP

Masks For All for COVID-19 Not Based on Sound Data - Laurence Svirchev, CIH

The Role of an Industrial Hygienist During a Pandemic - Nicholas Giardino, ScD, CIH

Virtual #IAMIH Challenge

The #IAMIH Challenge has moved to the virtual realm, so don’t stop your outreach. Create and post your videos and presentations for schools, fairs, students, and non-OEHS colleague and continue to educate others about the profession! Click here for outreach resources. Winners will be announced during the Mark of Excellence virtual awards in the Fall.


A Tribute to Eula Bingham, 1929-2020

SynergistNOW blog by Robert Lieckfield, Jr., CIH, FAIHA and Barbara Cohrssen, CIH, MS, FAIHA
We are sad to report that one of the titans of modern-day industrial hygiene and occupational health, Eula Bingham, passed away June 13, 2020, at the age of 90. Read More.

From SynergistNOW: "Is Online EHS Training the New Normal?"

Roger Marks of Lion Technology, Inc. writes: "The COVID-19 pandemic has made training an even bigger challenge than usual in 2020. When facilities closed, employees stayed home, and public gatherings ceased, professionals in need of routine safety or hazardous waste and materials training were left with one option: online education." Read More.

Respiratory Sensitizers

The Synergist
Respiratory sensitization leading to occupational asthma (OA) is growing in prevalence worldwide. This article describes where sensitizers can be found, how respiratory and dermal sensitization differ, the symptoms and characterization of OA, and approaches to assessing and controlling exposures to respiratory sensitizers. Read More.

Comparing Codes of Ethics

The Synergist
Last November, the American Public Health Association updated its code of ethics. This code is of interest to occupational health and safety professionals because many of us work in public health entities, including governmental, academic, and healthcare organizations; we should be familiar with the code because we are part of the larger, interdisciplinary field of public health. More importantly, the APHA code provides a detailed framework for decision-making that can help us weigh options when we face ethical dilemmas. Read More.

Proud to Be an IH: Decades of Impact

SynergistNOW Blog by John Baker
“In 1971, I started my career with the Air Pollution Control Division of the Erie County, New York, Health Department. Although back then my peers and I didn't use these exact terms, we used the industrial hygienist's principles of anticipation, recognition, evaluation, control, and confirmation to reduce public exposures to harmful materials. Our outcomes included community noise control and better ambient air quality in the community and on private property.” Read More.