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Safe • Skilled • Ready Workforce Program


Before they join the U.S. workforce for the first time, or start a new job, all workers will have the basic skills they need to stay safe on the job and to contribute to a safe, healthy, and productive workplace. That is the mission of the Safe–Skilled–Ready Workforce Program of the National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH).

This program approaches the future workforce as a whole. The effort recognizes that employers are responsible for providing a safe and healthy workplace, but everyone should have basic skills to help protect them on the job now, and throughout their lives. Many career technical, vocational, apprenticeship, on-the-job, and other hazardous work training programs already teach workplace safety and health skills. NIOSH can build on these efforts and be a unifying voice. This program will promote workplace safety and health knowledge and skills for all workers, in all education and career pathways.

This effort focuses on providing young workers and new workers with the skills they need to better protect themselves and others. Having these basic skills will help them play a part in making their workplaces safer and healthier.

These basic skills (the eight core competencies) are general, transferable and can apply across all industries. They can be used with the job-specific skills that workers gain through apprenticeship and career technical or vocational training programs. They also strengthen the vital workplace safety and health frameworks delivered through the programs. The core skills can also be used to improve the health and safety of other places, such as in homes, schools, or communities.