February 09, 2018

Week 11: Jan. 22-28, 2018 in Puerto Rico

Luzdary Giraldo of the New York Committee for Occupational Safety and Health (NYCOSH) and Calvin Bozeman of United Steelworkers (USW) Local Union 9-675 were the next two Specialized Emergency Response Trainers (SERTs) deployed to Puerto Rico. On Monday, Giraldo and Bozeman facilitated a train-the-trainer course at the University of Puerto Rico Medical Sciences Campus in San Juan for five students in the medical field. The SERTs facilitated another train-the-trainer course on Tuesday for 11 students, nine from the university and two representatives from nearby local unions. The SERTs have been training in conjunction with members from the International Center for Worker Health and Safety Education (ICWUC), National Council for Occupational Safety and Health (COSH) and National Worker Center Coalitions.

“These two groups will merge for the rest of the week to complete a 40-hour train-the-trainer course,” Giraldo said.

Graduating from this course will enable participants to enter the field and equip workers with health, safety and environmental training. They will also have the ability to go out into their communities and promote the health and safety of the workers and community members who are cleaning up and rebuilding in the aftermath of the natural disasters.

“Upon completion of the training on Sunday afternoon, I am planning to have the students accompany Calvin and I to other possible areas where we may have the opportunity to provide health and safety training in order for them to gain experience,” Giraldo said.

The SERTs spent the rest of the week facilitating the train-the-trainer course, confirming future class schedules and planning meetings with representatives from local organizations such as Habitat for Humanity. They’ve also made contacts that will potentially allow them to conduct training at one of the nearby hospitals.

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