I taught the Hazwoper (Hazardous Waste Operations & Emergency Response) course for 20 years, the lead abatement stuff for 15, asbestos for 10, and radiation and mold courses for close to 10. OSHA has just come out with a new policy, which i saw on their “Quick Takes” web page, that these and other safety classes need to be available in people’s first language. I applaud that decision heartily! I used to be fluent in Spanish, and still get by in it if I scrape off the rust, but my ex-client, after hearing me speaking that language to a student in the hallway, promptly started giving me all the Mexicanos and Central Americans, which was fine, but for some idiotic reason also gave me all the Koreans, and I don’t speak a word of that tongue. People are weird, and no wonder I don’t work for that clown anymore.
My big word in safety training is COMMUNICATIONS, and if there’s a language gap, crevasse, declivity, or what have you, people get hurt. So this long-overdue approach from OSHA is something I can get totally behind. I also like the administration’s idea for giving cleanup jobs to the people most affected by the gusher in the Gulf. I’m also enthused that I finally got a visitor to my page from New Zealand…a friend of mine has a kazillion visits from the continents, so I’m trying to get all the islands. Have a safe and healthy day, folks!