In 2011, the National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health along with the National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences and in partnership with the Occupational Safety and Health Administration and the Environmental Protection Agency convened a national conference on Eliminating Health and Safety Disparities at Work www.aoecdata.org/conferences/healthdisparities/
. In this issue Steege et al.  present new analyses of the Bureau of Labor Statistics data on occupational injuries and illnesses and work-related fatalities, which indicate that workers who are African American, Hispanic, immigrant, who earn low wages and who have lower levels of educational attainment are at greater risk of working in occupations where occupational injuries and illnesses occur at more than twice the national rate. These data clearly demonstrate the need for more targeted and comprehensive occupational safety and health prevention programs aimed at reducing these disparities. The goal of the 2011 conference was to bring together representatives from multiple disciplines and perspectives to review the major research accomplishments and gaps in understanding the social, cultural, and economic factors that create and perpetuate occupational health and safety disparities.