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Indiana University


Policies for Support Staff
Represented by CWA, Local 4730 at Bloomington and Northwest

Health and Safety
CWA 7.1

Effective date

Revised July 1, 2008

Employees covered by this policy
This policy applies to all Support Staff at IU Bloomington and Northwest.

A. Mission to create a safe and healthful working environment

  1. Indiana University recognizes its on-going responsibility to provide a safe and healthful working environment. All department heads, administrators, and supervisors are recognized as having unique facilitative responsibilities in accomplishing this mission.

  2. Specifically, the departments of Environmental Health and Safety, University Human Resource Services, Office of Insurance, Loss Control & Claims, and other university designated experts have the responsibility to provide technical and regulatory assistance and information to all departments and units to accomplish this mission.

  3. All employees and the CWA have a responsibility to cooperate with the university in achieving this mission. This includes making reasonable efforts to promptly report health and safety issues. The university will promptly investigate and address such health and safety issues.

    1. No department head, administrator or supervisor shall prevent or attempt to dissuade an employee from seeking assistance or information concerning workplace health or safety issues.

  4. The university shall continue, in accordance with applicable laws, to make information concerning hazardous material available to employees.

B. IU/CWA Safety Committee

  1. At each campus, Bloomington and Northwest, a joint IU/CWA Safety Committee provides a means for active participation of staff, their representatives, and management personnel to assist IU in achieving a safe and healthful workplace.

    1. The committee consists of three representatives appointed by the administration and three representatives appointed by CWA.

    2. The goals of the committee include the areas of promoting wellness, investigating complaints, and accountability.

    3. The committee operates within a joint set of bylaws.

    4. A supervisor of a Safety Committee is encouraged, when work requirements permit, to release the Safety Committee member to investigate a safety complaint. The Safety Committee member is expected to conduct such an investigation in an expeditious manner and return to work as soon as possible.

  2. For more information about the committee and its goals and objectives, contact the campus Human Resources office or a CWA representative.

C. Cumulative trauma

  1. Cumulative/repetitive trauma is "an injury which occurs to parts of the body after repetitive stress without sufficient time allowed for healing between the occurrences of injury."

  2. The CWA and management work cooperatively and constructively to reduce risk factors for cumulative trauma. This includes training to assist CWA representatives and supervisors on how to evaluate and address potential problems in the workplace.

  3. The IU/CWA Safety Committee develops and distributes information concerning practical techniques for reducing the risk factors for cumulative trauma.

  4. The office of Worker's Compensation publishes a set of guidelines, available from each department or from Worker's Compensation, for reviewing cumulative trauma claims.

D. Inadequate air quality

  1. In the case of a problem of inadequate air quality, an employee can contact the appropriate campus department as identified below.

    1. The following types of complaints should be referred to the Physical Plant or the maintenance personnel of the specific building zone: draftiness, lack of air or "stuffy" air, dirt or particles coming out of the vent system, and visible mold growth.

    2. All other complaints can be addressed to Environmental Health and Safety. These include but are not limited to unusual odors (chemical and exhaust-type smells) and sickness associated with one's occupancy of a building.

E. Toxic substances

  1. In accordance with the Indiana University Hazard Communication Program, whenever a substance is identified as being toxic, prior to any clean up or removal of the substance, the university will make a determination of the following:

    1. The nature of the substance and its toxic properties

    2. The safe and recommended method of working with the substance, including the appropriate personal protective equipment necessary to work with the substance

  2. The university will supply a copy of the information to the affected employees and to the president of CWA, Local 4730. Any clean-up will be under the supervision of an industrial hygienist, or other similarly qualified professional, who will have the authority to immediately stop work to protect the safety and health of workers, or to prevent harm to the environment.

F. IOSHA inspections

  1. Should a compliance officer from IOSHA determine that a CWA Local 4730 representative should accompany the compliance officer on an inspection of an IU facility or worksite, and/or to participate in opening and/or closing conferences, the Office of Environmental Health and Safety will contact the designated CWA representative.

    1. The supervisor will make every effort to release the employee and without loss of pay.

  2. CWA Local 4730 will be responsible for providing to Environmental Health and Safety an up-to-date list of CWA representatives, listed in the order in which they are to be contacted.

    1. Each CWA contact should maintain a copy of said list and will provide to her/his supervisor in the event of a request by IOSHA to participate.

G. Closings due to unsafe/adverse working conditions

This section has been moved to the personnel policy, Adverse or Unsafe Working Conditions.

H. Guidelines for making up lost time
This section has been moved to the personnel policy, Adverse or Unsafe Working Conditions.

Procedure 7.1 Reporting and reviewing unsafe work tasks or conditions

  1. Employees who find themselves in a situation described below may ask their supervisor to review the unsafe task or condition. Employees and supervisors are encouraged to resolve the situation before requesting an outside review.

    1. A situation which directs an employee to perform work that is unsafe or dangerous beyond the normal hazards of the occupation.

    2. A situation which directs an employee to perform work without adequate training or protective equipment required by applicable laws.

  2. At Bloomington, if no resolution between the employee and supervisor occurs, then the employee or supervisor may request a review of the situation by filing an Unsafe Working Conditions Report or a Safety Suggestion Report with Environmental Health and Safety and the IU/CWA Safety Committee. These forms are available from the following sources: IU/CWA Safety Committee, HR respresentatives, CWA representatives, or Environmental Health and Safety.

    1. At Northwest, the employee or supervisor should contact the manager of Environmental Health and Safety.

  3. Environmental Health and Safety or other university designated expert will make the final determination as to whether the work is safe. They will also determine which safety standards apply to the given situation.

    1. While a work situation is under review, the employee is not required to perform the work in question, as long as the employee provides a reasonable basis for their belief that the work would endanger their personal safety.

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University Human Resources
Last updated: 10 December 2009
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