Principal Investigator / Institution

Ashlee Fitch
Tel 412-562-2400
Fax 412-562-2584
[email protected]
The Steelworkers Charitable and Educational Organization
60 Boulevard of the Allies
Suite 200
Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania 15222

Program Description

United Steelworkers of America logo

The Steelworkers Charitable and Educational Organization (SCEO), the nonprofit entity of the United Steelworkers (USW), supports a training partnership linking two of the largest U.S.-based industrial unions with rapidly-expanding immigrant worker centers. The Tony Mazzocchi Center (TMC), the SCEO's training body, brings together the USW, the Communications Workers of America (CWA), the Labor Institute (LI), the National Day Laborer Organizing Network (NDLON), and Make the Road New York (MRNY). The TMC provides workers and community residents with training to help prevent toxic releases, fires, explosions, injuries, sickness, and death.

The TMC training partnership has access to more than 1.2 million workers and managers at facilities located in each U.S. state and Puerto Rico, Guam, and the Virgin Islands. They work in steel, oil, chemical manufacturing, nuclear energy, pharmaceuticals, pulp, paper, automobile parts, appliance manufacturing, cement, metal manufacturing, construction, rubber, plastics, shipbuilding, light manufacturing, telecommunications, transportation, electrical manufacturing, and health care. The training partnership also reaches workers in underserved communities that work primarily as day-laborers and temporary workers. The majority of these workers are exposed to hazardous substances covered by the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) (29 CFR 1910); the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (40 CFR 311); and the U.S. Department of Transportation (49 CFR 171-177).

Hazardous Waste Worker Training Program (HWWTP)

The SCEO conducts courses reaching USW and CWA members, immigrant day laborers, and temporary workers who face many hazards on their ever-shifting work sites. The SCEO provides training to those on the front lines in the fight to contain environmental and hazardous waste threats to the public health of workers, communities, and Worker Training Program (WTP) stakeholders. Hazardous materials, Hazardous Waste Operations and Emergency Response (HAZWOPER), and related OSHA trainings are facilitated by worker trainers who produce, dispose of, and transport billions of pounds of hazardous substances wastes.

HAZMAT Disaster Preparedness Training Program (HDPTP)

With the experience gained over the past decade of work on this program, the SCEO is pivoting some of its work to encompass pre-disaster planning. It has become clear that as necessary as post-disaster training has been to ensure the safety and health of those affected by storms and human-made disasters, pre-planning will serve to decrease the severity of those effects. A combination of educational materials and training assists workplaces and communities in preparing for future disasters. Additionally, the SCEO is working in targeted locations to create "hubs" that will serve as home bases for this work.

The HDPTP supports a cadre of Specialized Emergency Response Trainers (SERTs) who serve as a part of the national WTP team, ready to respond to any emergency anywhere. The team is trained to respond immediately to emergencies when called upon to provide on-the-spot training to workers and communities recently impacted by a human-made or natural disaster. The SERTs team is comprised of both union members and worker center members, providing the ability to provide response training in multiple languages.

NIEHS/U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) Nuclear Worker Training Program

The TMC training partnership also trains current and potential workers across the DOE complex. This training helps workers and nearby community members implement strategies to prevent potentially deadly accidents and releases into the environment and protect themselves during emergencies. The SCEO targets its training to workers whose jobs put them at risk of exposure to hazardous materials and waste by performing remediation and reclamation tasks and risks associated with hazardous materials incidents.

Coronavirus Response Training

In the past decade, different infectious diseases have affected workers and communities. While it has often been a variant of influenza, 2020 has shown that we are vulnerable to previously unforeseen diseases. Fortunately, the prevention and response approaches are often quite similar. The TMC training partnership equips frontline, essential, and other workers at risk of exposure to infectious diseases through their employment with tools to protect themselves and their communities. This training covers infection exposure routes, control planning, and measures that can be used to mitigate the spread of infectious diseases.

Project Duration

  • August 1, 2020 - May 31, 2025 (HWWTP, ECWTP, HDPTP)
  • September 1, 2020 - July 31, 2025 (DOE)
  • June 1, 2016 - May 31, 2019 (Ebola Biosafety and Infectious Disease Response)

Grant Numbers

  • U45 ES006175 (HWWTP, ECWTP, HDPTP)
  • UH4 ES009761 (DOE)
  • UH4 ES027003-01 (Ebola Biosafety and Infectious Disease Response)

Other Participating Organizations