About

The Tony Mazzocchi Center for Health, Safety and Environmental Education (TMC) is part of the United Steelworkers (USW) Health, Safety and Environment Department.  The TMC is a consortium between the USW and the Labor Institute.  In 2009, the TMC expanded the consortium to include the Communications Workers of America (CWA). The long-term aim of the consortium is to prevent work-related injuries and illness by providing union based health, safety and environmental training to local union officers, union health and safety activists, workers, and their management counterparts.

The TMC provides a broad spectrum environmental and health and safety training to union members.  Much of the training is funded by the National Institute for Environmental Health Sciences (NIEHS), the Department of Energy (DOE), and the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA). 

The TMC was established in 2005, but the unions and the Labor Institute have been providing worker training for many years.

Program Description

The TMC provides training under the NIEHS Hazardous Waste Worker Training Program (HWWTP), the NIEHS Hazmat Disaster Preparedness Training Program (HDPTP), and the NIEHS Nuclear Workers Training Program (DOE). 

HWWTP provides environmental health and safety training to workers and first responders. Site-specific instruction is customized to workplace needs.  The training can accommodate workers with limited English proficiency and incorporates a peer training delivery model that is based from a "train the trainer" component.  While the training is based on and around the requirements of OSHA's hazardous waste operations and emergency response (HAZWOPER) training elements, many other related and relevant training programs are performed as well.

The HDPTP program focuses on the prevention of catastrophic events that may be caused by acts of terror or natural disasters by not only preparing for the response but also applying the principles of OSHA's Process Safety Management standard to minimizing the target potential of sites.

The DOE program trains workers who are, or have the potential to be, employed in demolition, decommission, and decontamination projects and TSD facilities at the DOE nuclear weapons facilities.

The TMC also provides training under several grants from the OSHA Susan Harwood Training Program on topics including a union approach to health and safety that is targeted to hone the skills of all USW local union health and safety activists, as well as process safety management, general industry safety, and pandemic flu.  The OSHA grants also support the TMC's Lessons Learned program, in which participants write and share training materials based on real workplace health and safety experiences.

Another TMC project, the Worker Health Protection Program (WHPP), is supported by a grant from the DOE.  This partnership between the USW and Queens College offers free medical screening to workers or former workers at DOE sites to detect work-related illness as early as possible, when medical treatment is more effective. 

Other Participating Institutions