Editor's Note: Giving thanks
As much as I take safety to heart, no one who knows me well has ever really been surprised to receive a text or voicemail saying that I’ve just left the emergency room after receiving stitches.
Thanksgiving 2014 was the last time I arrived at a family function with a finger wrapped in gauze, and corrective action was immediately taken: I was permanently relieved of all cheese-cubing duties, and when Santa reached into his sack of gifts a few weeks later he pulled out an electric food chopper. My dreams of chef-worthy knife skills have given way to a more practical vision of fewer insurance co-pays. And since then, I’ve been free from hand injuries. Although it’s embarrassing that my lack of talent in the kitchen has so frequently and dramatically been on display, I’m grateful for everything my siblings – all of whom have families of their own to worry about – have done to try to keep me safe.
I found myself thinking of it again during the 2015 NSC Congress & Expo in Atlanta. The memories were triggered when, as closing time approached on the final day of the Expo, a safety pro stopped by the Safety+Health booth to chat – and to rest her feet for a moment. She said she had spent much of the day visiting PPE manufacturers’ booths in search of gloves for one worker at her facility who refused to wear them. I couldn’t help but be impressed by this woman, who had responsibilities for a large number of people yet was willing to put time and effort into finding an item that might encourage a single worker to comply with the rules.
Some of you have told me that safety can feel like a thankless job. So as another Thanksgiving approaches, I want to take a moment to give thanks not only for my family, but for all the safety pros out there who are committed to doing whatever it takes to keep every person in their charge injury-free.