The Third Annual Governor’s Award for Outstanding Workplace Safety was held Wednesday, April 18, 2007 at the Capital Plaza, State Street, Montpelier.
Recipients of the Small Employer category Award for Workplace Safety
21-year old Highland Sugarworks, a maple-packing facility, employs 12 workers, including the owner, at its location near the nation’s largest granite quarrying and manufacturing facilities in Websterville, Vermont.
Deborah Frimodig, Director of Operations credits the workforce watching out for each other and implementing appropriate safety measures as the key to the company’s success in workplace safety.
Frimodig says that as the company continues its growth and adds equipment and improves methods of production, it has been able to improve the working atmosphere and safety conditions for its employees.
Highland Sugarworks has had only one lost time (two days) injury in the past four years.
Workplace safety at Highland Sugarworks has been a work in progress and continues to do everything within its power to make sure the employees of the company are safe, happy and healthy.
Recipient of the Large Employers category Award for Workplace Safety..
Located on 146 acres in the northwest corner community of Georgia, Vermont, PBM Nutritionals facility occupies 212,249 square feet and is capable of producing 33 million pounds of powdered infant formula a year.
The company operates 24 hours a day, five days a week, and presently employs approximately 280 people.
Company officials point to a 12-member “dynamic and dedicated Employee Health & Safety Committee as the catalyst for that company’s excellent workplace safety record. PBM Nutritionals has had no workplace fatalities or catastrophic injuries in the past three years.
One of the criteria, an important one, for this award is to have an experience modification rate of 0.90 or less. PBM has an experience mod of 0.70!!
Other factors in this decision included a total of 79% reduction in OSHA recordable injuries from 2004 to 2006; Successful completion of all regulatory required safety training for 2006; plus several employee-oriented safety measure including an on-site physical therapist.
PBM has also initiated a collaborative relationship with Northwestern Occupational Health Clinic for pre-employment physicals, worker compensation case management and job analysis.
The company has also put in place successful light duty, early coordination with medical providers and return-to-work programs.
Nominees for the Governor's Outstanding Workplace Safety Award
IBM, Essex Jct
Ben & Jerry's, Waterbury
Rio Tinto Minerals, Ludlow
Harbour Industries, Shelburne
Hancor Inc., N Springfield
OMYA Inc., Florence
PBM Nutritionals, Georgia
Highland Sugarworks, Websterville
To: Vermont Employers, Employees and Insurance Agents
From: Patricia Moulton Powden, Commissioner of Labor
RE: 3rd Annual Governor’s Award for Outstanding Workplace Safety
Date: January 18, 2007
The Governor of Vermont and the Vermont Department of Labor annually recognize employers that have made outstanding achievements in Workplace Safety and Health. The Governor’s Award on workplace safety is the highest honor given by the State of Vermont to recognize an employer’s commitment to excellence in workplace safety and health.
Governor Douglas sponsored the first annual Governor’s Workplace Safety Award in March of 2005. The award in the category of “smaller” employer was presented to GPI Construction of Brattleboro, VT and the award in the category of “larger” employer was presented to DEW Construction Corporation of Williston, VT. Last year’s awards went to Swanton Lumber of Swanton, VT for “smaller” category and Mack Molding of Arlington, East Arlington and Cavendish, VT for “larger” category. We also gave a “special achievement” award to Vermont Air National Guard 158th Fighter Wing.
The Governor will be announcing two new winners during the Third Annual Workplace Safety Award Ceremony, which will take place in the spring of 2007. The Vermont Department of Labor is currently accepting nominations for these awards until February 9th, 2007. Anyone is welcome to submit a nomination to the Vermont Department of Labor. The criteria for a nomination are listed below. Please keep in mind that the workplace is not just in a fixed location, but can also be on our roadways, outdoor locations as well as temporary sites. The nomination must be supported by information that demonstrates outstanding workplace safety. Relevant nomination criteria include:
- Experience modification rate of 0.90 or less
- Existence of an active safety committee
- A three year history of no work fatalities or catastrophic injuries
- Additional evidence of outstanding safety, such as a significant number of days without a lost time injury
Once an employer has been nominated, the Vermont Department of Labor will send a letter to that employer notifying them of their nomination and requesting any documentation that demonstrates that company’s commitment to workplace safety and health. Based on that documentation two new winners (one for the smaller employer category and the other for the larger employer category) will be selected.
Nominations may be submitted in writing to the:
Vermont Department of Labor
Attn: Becky Morris
National Life Bldg., Drawer 20
Montpelier, VT 05620-3401
or you can email it to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Please take time to consider nominating an employer that you think deserves this honor.