CWA was recently awarded a $175,000 training grant to continue the union's ergonomics program by the Department of Labor's Occupational Safety and Health Administration.
CWA Executive Vice President M.E. Nichols was advised of the Susan Harwood Training Grant on Sept. 24 by David C. Zeigler, director of administrative programs for OSHA. Greg Watchman, acting assistant secretary at DOL, said CWA is one of 24 organizations to receive a federal grant award from a field of 203 applicants.
David LeGrande, administrative assistant to Nichols and director of the union's OSHA efforts, said the funds will be used to continue and expand the union's training program. The program, he said, focuses on reducing the incidence and severity of workplace ergonomic problems.
CWA members in such diverse areas as telecommunications, printing, publishing, media, health care and public sector locations have developed cumulative traumas and musculoskeletal health symptoms and disorders.
Over the years, 116 CWA OSH activists from around the country have participated in "train the trainer" programs and LeGrande said he expects another 88 to be trained this year.
A four-day course on ergonomic problems and hazards in the workplace has been scheduled beginning Dec. 14 at the University of Wisconsin in Madison. A two-day advanced course, for graduates of the four-day course, is scheduled Jan. 21 through 23 at Madison, LeGrande said, and that additional courses will be scheduled later.