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Your Environment. Your Health.

The New England Consortium-Civil Service Employees Association

Principal Investigator / Institution

David Turcotte
David Turcotte
Research Professor, Department of Economics
Tel (978)934-4682
Fax (978)934-3071
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
University of Massachusetts Lowell
Department of Public Health
600 Suffolk Street
Lowell, Massachusetts 01854

Program Description

University of Massachusetts logo

Since 1988, The New England Consortium-Civil Service Employees Association (TNEC-CSEA) program, directed by the University of Massachusetts Lowell, has been delivering health and safety training for workers engaged in hazardous waste operations and emergency response to all-hazards incidents. The program targets workers whose jobs expose them to hazardous waste materials that may be chemical, biological, radiological, highly explosive, and nuclear. In cooperative agreement with NIEHS, they work 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 is a partnership of the University of Massachusetts Lowell (lead organization); five 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. Hazardous Waste Operations and Emergency Response (HAZWOPER) work is inherently dangerous, presenting potential workplace exposures to chemical, biological, radioactive, nuclear, and highly explosive agents, which can lead to occupational injuries, illnesses, and fatalities. The health and safety training provides this workforce with enhanced abilities to protect themselves and surrounding communities from hazardous materials exposures. It is presented in a participatory manner, with opportunities for practice and learning from peers, in accordance with adult education principles.

The Northeast region health and safety training program will target workers engaged in hazardous waste operations and emergency response through the Hazardous Waste Worker Training Program (HWWTP) and the HAZMAT Disaster Preparedness Training Program (HDPTP) components. The HWWTP will provide hazardous waste worker and/or emergency responder health and safety training to more than 2,000 workers annually in the six New England states (1,250) and New York (750). The HDPTP targets public sector skilled support personnel. The program will provide hazardous materials disaster preparedness health and safety training to at least 1,000 New York state, county, and municipal workers annually; 30% of training hours will be in hands-on, multiple-day train-the-trainer courses, and 69% of training hours will be in single- or partial-day courses.


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.

Combined targeted worker populations include 175,000 private sector and 318,450 public sector workers in New England states, and 93,669 public sector workers in New York. They work in the hazardous waste remediation and/or management sectors, construction, manufacturing, transportation and warehousing, public and private infrastructure operation and maintenance, public and private facilities maintenance and environmental servicing, health care and education services, and the full range of emergency response personnel.

An immigrant worker center network capacity-building pilot project in Massachusetts and Rhode Island is proposed to provide HDPTP health and safety awareness training (muck and gut and mold after flooding) in Spanish and Portuguese for Latino and Brazilian immigrant workers (40 workers annually).

Project Duration

  • August 1, 2015 - July 31, 2020 (HWWTP, HDPTP)

Grant Numbers

  • U45 ES006172-24 (HWWTP, HDPTP)

Other Participating Organizations

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