What is the MSHA Alliance Program?
MSHA's Alliance program enables organizations committed to mine safety and health to collaborate with MSHA to prevent injuries, illnesses and fatalities in the workplace. MSHA and its allies work together to reach out to, educate, and lead the nation's mine operators and miners in improving and advancing mine safety and health. Alliances are formed by MSHA senior headquarters staff after initial discussions with an organization interested in collaborating with MSHA. MSHA's Alliance program is national in scope.
Why participate in an Alliance?
There are many benefits to participating in an Alliance with MSHA. Through this program, organizations will:
- Build trusting, cooperative relationships with the Agency
- Network with others committed to mine safety and health
- Leverage resources to maximize miner safety and health protection
Who can participate in an Alliance?
Alliances are open to all groups, including:
- Trade associations
- Labor organizations
- Professional societies
- Government agencies
In some cases, organizations may be cooperating with MSHA for the first time. In others, they may be building on existing relationships with the Agency that were developed through other collaborations.
How do Alliances work?
There are few formal program requirements for Alliances and the agreements do not include an enforcement component. However, MSHA and the participating organization must define, implement and meet a set of short and long-term goals that fall into at least one of the following categories: Training and Education, Outreach and Communications, Technical Assistance, and Promoting the National Dialogue on Mine Safety and Health.
Sample Goals for Training and Education
- Develop training and education programs on reducing and preventing mine hazards.
- Develop and share best practices and effective approaches to improve mine safety and health.
- Develop training and education programs on mine and disaster rescue, recovery and hazardous materials emergency response techniques.
- Develop and share best practices and effective approaches to improve mine and disaster rescue, recovery and hazardous materials response.
Sample Goals for Outreach and Communications
- Develop and disseminate information on mine safety and health at conferences, events, or through print and electronic media, including links from Web sites.
- Develop and distribute information through print and electronic media, including CDs, DVDs, interactive Web-based programs and establish links between Web sites.
- Develop and disseminate information on mine and disaster rescue, recovery and hazardous materials response techniques at conferences, events, or through print and electronic media, including links Web sites.
- Collaborate on developing and conducting technical sessions for various conferences.
- Speak, exhibit, or appear at conferences, meetings or other events and proactively address mine safety and health issues.
- Speak, exhibit, or appear at conferences or other events and generate opportunities for [our organizations’] leadership to speak to safety and health professionals in the mining industry.
- Work with MSHA to expand the existing relationship with MSHA in the Stay Out – Stay Alive Project.
Sample Goals for Technical Assistance
- Conduct evaluations of applied engineering to improve mine safety and health.
- Conduct evaluations of exemplary applied engineering controls to improve mine safety and health so that the Alliance can communicate sound engineering solutions to others in the industry.
- Conduct evaluations of applied engineering to improve mine and disaster rescue, recovery and hazardous materials response.
- Conduct analyses to identify potentially hazardous health and safety conditions to which the Alliance should direct particular attention and resources.
- Conduct analyses to identify health and safety practices which the Alliance can recommend to improve mine safety and health.
Sample Goals for Promoting the National Dialogue on Mine Safety and Health
- Raise others’ awareness of and demonstrate their own commitment to mine safety and health whenever leaders address groups.
- Raise others’ awareness of and demonstrate their own commitment to mine safety and health and homeland security whenever leaders address groups.
- Share information on best practices and effective approaches, as jointly determined, with others in the mining industry through individual or joint outreach and through training programs and materials. Promote the implementation of these practices and approaches through print or electronic media, at conferences or by other means of outreach.
- There shall be a special emphasis on cooperatively working with state aggregate associations in helping them improve the health and safety working conditions for their members’ employees.
- Perform mine safety and health case studies and publicize their results through print or electronic media, promotion at conferences, or other means of outreach.
- Convene and participate in forums, round table discussions, or stakeholder meetings on opportunities to help forge innovative solutions to challenging safety and health issues in mines or to provide input on such issues.
- Work collaboratively to present clear and accurate statistical information on mining and minerals operations in the United States.
What happens after the Alliance is signed?
MSHA and its' allies will form an implementation team. The team, consisting of representatives from MSHA and the organization, will have the responsibility for developing strategies and implementing programs or processes for meeting the mutually defined goals.