OSHA’s Alliance program is designed to provide parties an opportunity to participate in a voluntary cooperative relationship with OSHA for purposes such as training and education, outreach and communication, and promoting national dialogue on various aspects of workplace safety and health. As indicated on OSHA’s website, "The Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) works with the public to promote safety and health in the workplace by offering compliance assistance services and programs to businesses and organization. Through the Alliance Program, OSHA works with groups committed to safety (and) health, including businesses, trade or professional organizations, unions and educational institutions, to leverage resources and expertise to develop compliance assistance tools and resources and share information with employers and employees to help prevent injuries, illnesses and fatalities in the workplace.”

The power of alliance and leveraging of influence is evident in the freshly renewed NHCA/OSHA Alliance with the added participation of NIOSH—and the Alliance is bearing fruit. The Alliance has produced a Best Practices document , "Hearing Protection-Emerging Trends: Individual Fit Testing” providing general information on fit-testing of hearing protectors. It was also agreed to support the Shipyard Council of America Alliance with OSHA to develop a tool box talk on hearing protection for their small shipyard members.

In addition to these specific projects, OSHA, NIOSH, and NHCA have agreed to work together to promote these outreach and communication goals to promote hearing loss prevention:

  • NHCA and NIOSH will work together to provide expertise to OSHA in developing information on the recognition and prevention of hearing loss caused by workplace hazards. They will also provide expertise in developing ways of communicating such information (e.g. print and electronic media, electronic assistance tools, and OSHA’s, NIOSH’s and NHCA’s Web sites) to employers and employees in affected industries.
  • Each group agreed to seek opportunities and accept invitations to speak, exhibit, or appear at conferences, local meetings, or other events, especially those events co-sponsored by an Alliance partner, such as the annual NHCA conference.
  • Each partner agreed to publicize results by sharing the development of materials, training programs, workshops, seminars, and lectures (or any other applicable forum). They also agreed to share information regarding NHCA-recommended practices or effective approaches to prevent hearing loss.
  • Alliance participants will work together on specific issues and projects that are identified, addressed and developed through the Alliance Program. OSHA, NIOSH, and NHCA will work together to achieve the following goal related to promoting the national dialogue on workplace safety and health.
  • Convene or participate in forums, round table discussions, or stakeholder meetings on workplace hearing loss prevention issues to help forge innovative solutions in the workplace or to provide input on safety and health issues.

NHCA representatives to the Alliance are John Allen, Joe Cissna and Theresa Schulz. If you are interested in participating in Alliance activities or have information or ideas to help the Alliance succeed in the stated goals, please contact NHCA.