Principal Investigator / Institution

David Turcotte
David Turcotte
Research Professor, Department of Economics
Tel (978)934-4682
Fax (978)934-3071
[email protected]
University of Massachusetts Lowell
Center for Community Research & Engagement
Mahoney Hall Suite 212
870 Broadway Street

Program Contact

Thomas Estabrook, Ph.D.
Project Director / Co-Principal Investigator
Tel 978-934-3397
Fax 978-934-2012
[email protected]
University of Massachusetts Lowell
Department of Public Health
600 Suffolk Street
Lowell, Massachusetts 01854

Program Description

University of Massachusetts logo

Since 1987, The New England Consortium-Civil Service Employees Association (TNEC-CSEA) program has been delivering health and safety training for workers engaged in hazardous waste operations and emergency response to all-hazards incidents. TNEC-CSEA is a partnership of the University of Massachusetts Lowell (lead organization); four New England coalitions for occupational safety and health (COSH groups) in Massachusetts, Rhode Island, Connecticut, and New Hampshire; and CSEA Local 1000, AFSCME in New York. In cooperative agreement with NIEHS, TNEC-CSEA works in alignment with the relevant agencies of the United States government (U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, Occupational Safety and Health Administration, Department of Homeland Security, National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health, and others); the New England states and New York; county, local, and tribal agencies; and individuals and communities seeking safe hazardous waste management and emergency/disaster responses to preserve public health and safety and environmental integrity.

TNEC-CSEA will train workers exposed to hazardous materials; responding to disasters and post-event cleanups; at risk for workplace injuries and the misuse of opioids; and workers from underserved populations through high quality training based on evidence-based science and best practices in worker health and safety and adult education. It draws on its strength as a consortium of a university, non-profit worker advocacy organizations, and a large union of public sector workers to network and build relationships with a multitude of government, university, business and non-profit stakeholders. TNEC-CSEA uses proven adult education methods that are hands-on, small-group, learner-centered, and worker empowerment oriented to maximize its impact on workplace health and safety. TNEC-CSEA will train 4,000 workers annually over five years in the Hazardous Waste Worker Training Program (HWWTP) and the HazMat Disaster Preparedness Training Program (HDPTP) components in New York and the six New England states.

They work in private sector organizations in manufacturing, health care, hazardous materials response and remediation, environmental, construction, and utilities; and in public sector transportation, public safety, public works, health care, and environmental jobs, including federal, state, county, and municipal organizations. TNEC-CSEA seeks to expand and strengthen its program through new innovations in blended learning, infectious disease and disaster preparedness, climate change and chemical safety, and expanded delivery of training to vulnerable and underserved populations and those most at risk for injury and opioid use disorder. Continued TNEC-CSEA training will prevent injuries, illnesses and fatalities in thousands of workplaces by linking the best available science for worker protection with stakeholders in its network of safety and governmental professionals, unions, public health and environmental justice organizations, worker and job training centers, and tribal entities. With the COVID-19 pandemic, TNEC-CSEA has expanded its infectious disease training to new populations of front-line workers, including education, retail, food service, and hospitality personnel.


The HWWTP will provide hazardous waste worker and/or emergency responder health and safety training to more than 2,525 workers annually in the six New England states (1,900) and New York (625). New initiatives in the HWWTP include vulnerable and underrepresented worker populations; opioids and work awareness training; safe drinking water; blended learning and E-Learning technical upgrades; infectious disease preparedness training; climate change resiliency; and expanding course offerings to public sector employees in New England.


The HDPTP aims to support more resilient hazardous materials disaster response, remediation, and recovery by employers of public sector and immigrant workers, as well as the communities who rely on their efforts. The primary disaster focus will be extreme weather events and other natural disasters. The HDPTP targets public sector skilled support personnel. CSEA will provide hazardous materials disaster preparedness health and safety training to at least 776 New York state, county, and municipal workers annually. Trainings will address mental and behavioral effects associated with emergency response, prevention of work-related injuries that lead to addiction of opioids, heroin and fentanyl.

TNEC-CSEA partner MassCOSH (the Massachusetts Coalition for Occupational Safety and Health) facilitates an immigrant worker center network capacity-building project in Massachusetts and Rhode Island which will provide HDPTP health and safety awareness training in disaster cleanup, targeting worker populations including Latino and Brazilian construction and environmental services workers, likely to exceed 10,000 workers. The training, in Spanish and Portuguese, will include OSHA-10 construction safety, muck and gut, and protection from mold after flooding, as well as heat stress, for 60 participants annually. In addition, to combat the opioid crisis and lower the risks facing workers who are most vulnerable to opioid misuse, MassCOSH will partner with unions, worker centers and other youth-servicing organizations to provide technical assistance and training to at-risk workers including immigrant and young workers for 40 participants annually.

TNEC New England will provide disaster preparedness training to 60 participants annually from municipal organizations, focusing on the impact of extreme weather events. TNEC will also deliver additional trainings in chemical safety and climate change to 60 participants annually from municipalities, industry, emergency response, and community organizations.

Project Duration

  • August 1, 2020 - May 31, 2025 (HWWTP, HDPTP)

Grant Numbers

  • U45 ES006172 (HWWTP, HDPTP)

Other Participating Organizations