Three past presidents of the American Industrial Hygiene Association (AIHA) - Barbara Dawson, John Henshaw and Zack Mansdorf - are leading a fundraising effort to support a grassroots-level occupational safety and health training program in Bangladesh. The project, called the OHS Initiative for Workers and Communities, is a joint effort of six leading non-governmental organizations in Dhaka to train 75 peer trainers on essential OHS topics so that they can reach out to workers in the garment, brick kiln, tannery, ship-breaking and other industries with life-saving information and skills. The Dhaka groups include three labor organizations and women rights, public health, and OHS research/training organizations.
The AIHA past presidents have been joined by Rich Hirsh and David Hornung, leading members of the AIHA International Affairs and Social Concerns Committees, in donating an initial total of $2,000 toward the OHS Initiative in Dhaka, and in issuing a call to AIHA members and other OHS professionals to join them. The contributions from this fund drive will close the small budget gap to launch the project in 2016, and to provide funds for technical assistance to the OHS Initiative from professionals outside Bangladesh during the three-year start-up period.