From: Al Delfiner <jadelfiner**At_Symbol_Here**VERIZON.NET>
Subject: Re: [DCHAS-L] UC - LADA Agreement
Date: August 12, 2012 10:56:06 PM EDT
Reply-To: DCHAS-L <DCHAS-L**At_Symbol_Here**MED.CORNELL.EDU>
Message-ID: <EE208D70-D3A2-4AD1-BA75-2A1C744C50B5**At_Symbol_Here**DCHAS.ORG>

Dear Robin,

My compliments go out to you on your well written message of
Aug. 7. It is very important to get that message out to
industry, government labs, universities, and the pre-college
community. One way to get the word out to the educators
would be to have what you wrote published in the journals of
the American Federation of Teachers and the NSTA.
I worked in industry and taught chemistry on the college and
pre-college levels. I am retired now.

207 Lincoln Place
Eastchester, NY 10709-2005
914-961-8882 (Home voice and messages)
914-771-6669 (FAX)
914-523-8272 (Cell)

-----Original Message-----
From: DCHAS-L Discussion List
[mailto:dchas-l**At_Symbol_Here**MED.CORNELL.EDU] On Behalf Of Secretary, ACS
Division of Chemical Health and Safety
Sent: Tuesday, August 07, 2012 11:17 AM
Subject: Re: [DCHAS-L] UC - LADA Agreement

From: "Robin M. Izzo"
Subject: RE: [DCHAS-L] UC - LADA Agreement
Date: August 7, 2012 9:58:37 AM EDT

I've been away and I am just catching up on this thread.

Like most of my peers in academia, my group has the authority
discussed in these posts. In our case, we have an escalation
process that reaches the Dean for Research or the Dean of the
Faculty. I can shut down a lab if I feel it necessary. I
can impose safety requirements. We have policies and
procedures, resources, training and other elements that are
part of a good safety program.

But that doesn't mean that we are not just as vulnerable to
what UCLA, Texas Tech and others have experienced, because at
any given time, a student, faculty, post-doc, visiting
researcher, etc can make a poor choice. Our laboratories are
filled with young people who tend to be more risk-averse,
feel invincible and think nothing bad is going to happen to
them. In some cases, the people responsible managing the lab
have no management experience, don't feel comfortable with
confrontation, don't know how to manage performance.

The auto insurance industry charges higher rates for drivers
under 25. Why? Because young drivers have less experience
and take more risks. Now think of the average age of
laboratory workers in academic research labs. How many times
do you see a PI/lab manager well under the age of 30 outside
of academia? Yet a brand new assistant professor may be well
under 30, never had management responsibility or some of the
other attributes of a strong manager.

It's not all about age. In academia, most of the people in
our research labs have never left college life - they go from
undergrad to grad to post-doc to assistant professor to
professor. They live in a world where everything we think we
know is questioned, analyzed, challenged. They ask why.
It's not enough just to tell them the rules - we are further
challenged to help them to understand WHY.

We do have a challenge in academia. My colleagues work hard
to foster a positive culture of safety and we are making
headway. We work with upper administration. We collaborate
with faculty. It's not easy, but we are doing it, and
organizations like ACS and CSHEMA help us get there by
sharing what works.

We know what doesn't work. Being the safety police doesn't
work. Being collaborative, offering tools and resources like
the ones that ACS does such a wonderful job developing,
encouraging open discussion of safety works. Most of the

I am not wasting my life. I am trying to make a difference.
I am proud to be an EHS professional in academia - there's no
place I'd rather be.


Robin M. Izzo, M.S.
Associate Director, EHS
Princeton University
609-258-6259 (office)

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