The U.S. Labor Department's Occupational Safety and Health Administration and Pennsylvania's Department of Education, Bureau of Career and Technical Education (Bureau of CTE) have joined forces to promote workplace safety and health for students in career and technical centers and vocational technical schools in the state.

A signing ceremony took place on March 1 in Harrisburg, Pa., at the bureau's headquarters.

OSHA Safety and Health alliances are part of U.S. Labor Secretary Elaine L. Chao's ongoing efforts to improve the health and safety of workers through cooperative partnerships with trade associations, labor organizations and employers. Since 2001, the agency has created more than 400 alliances with organizations committed to fostering safety and health in the workplace.

The alliance will give technical centers and vocational technical schools the opportunity to have authorized trainers and instructors provide safety and health training to the students and equip them with the knowledge and skills in identifying safety and health hazards prior to entering the workforce.

"We want to make sure the students work in a safe and healthy environment today and take these skills into their workplaces tomorrow," said Richard D. Soltan, regional administrator of OSHA in Philadelphia.

An additional goal of the alliance is to encourage faculty members to participate in OSHA Training Institute (OTI) courses offered at numerous Educational Centers.

Through its services, the Pennsylvania's Bureau of CTE, reinforces and strengthens local efforts of administrators, teachers and counselors to implement career and technical education programs across the State.

All OSHA offices in Pennsylvania will participate in this alliance (Philadelphia, Allentown, Wilkes-Barre, Harrisburg, Pittsburgh, and Erie).