The AAOHN Foundation, a 501(c)(3) tax-exempt organization, was created by the American Association of Occupational Health Nurses Inc. (AAOHN) in 1998 to enable occupational and environmental health professionals to improve worker health and safety by preventing workplace illnesses and injuries. These purposes are accomplished through grants and scholarships to support:
- • scholarship awards to support ongoing professional education;
- • leadership development; and
- • grants for research initiatives.
Workers are our most valuable resource. Their health and safety are key to a strong economy, the health of businesses domestically and globally, and the well being of the general public. However, workplace illnesses and injuries continue to inflict a tremendous toll in both human and economic costs.In her address at the “Workers Memorial Day” in Los Angeles, Calif., on April 26, 2012, Hilda Solis, Secretary of Labor, painted a picture of a grim reality:
“Every year in America, nearly 4 million people suffer a workplace injury from which some may never recover. These are preventable tragedies that disable our workers, devastate our families, and damage our economy. American workers are not looking for a handout or a free lunch. They are looking for a good day's pay for a hard day's work. They just want to go to work, provide for their families, and get home in one piece." (Retrieved from: http://www.dol.gov/_sec/media/speeches/20120426_WMD.htm)
Significant progress has been made in improving worker protection and the health and safety of the work environment. Due to the efforts of occupational health nurses and others who are committed to worker health and safety, worker injuries and illnesses decreased from 10.9 incidents per 100 workers in 1972 to fewer than 4 per 100 in 2010. (Retrieved from: http://www.osha.gov/oshstats/commonstats.html) However, the AAOHN Foundation is not satisfied with this data. In private industry, there were a total of 2,986,500 recordable cases of nonfatal injuries and illnesses in 2011. (Retrieved from: http://www.bls.gov/iif/) We are confident that with our continuing efforts to improve the health and safety of workers, we can achieve much more.
To ensure that occupational and environmental health professionals find the critical current and future answers they need, the AAOHN Foundation funds professional development scholarships and research grants that focus on improving the health and safety of the nation's workforce.
The Foundation acts as both a vital source of funds and a stimulus for substantive work to solve today's worker health and safety issues. Supporting the Foundation’s fundraising activities ensures improvement in the health and safety of the nation's workforce and a bold, visionary expansion of resources for occupational and environmental health professionals.
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