Monday, March 29, 2010

Safety Professionals, Real Need or Scapegoat?

Before you think you have come to your own conclusion, give me a chance to explain. Over alot of years I have had the opportunity to work with several Safety Professionals. Some were really devoted to what they did, and some were forced into the position by others.

Obviously there is a need for Safety Professionals in the private sector, but what good are they doing for the companies they work for? Are they there to ensure that employees go home safely everyday, or are they there to take the fall if something goes wrong? Or, are they there for both?

I have known many that believed safety for their company, "was not important, until it was important". Management, according to these people only tolerated safety folks because their contract required it, but, atleast they had someone to place the blame on when things went south.

I have overheard some safety pros saying that they plead for management to help them accomplish a goal for their project, but get stonewalled because of money or some other excuse. Then an accident happens, that by the way could have been fixed with the original idea, and who gets blamed for it? You guessed it, the safety guy (or gal). Simply because it was under his job description to prevent it from happening.

So I ask again, are we in the times that private Safety Pros can actually exist because companies see the benefits, or because it is a requirement, thus having someone to blame for all safety problems??

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