Westfield State University strives to protect all members of the University community from the health and environmental hazards presented by hazardous chemicals. It requires that the procedures, safety equipment specifications, and work practices covered in the Chemical Hygiene Plan (CHP) be properly enforced, implemented, and observed. The Chemical Hygiene Officer is responsible for implementing the provisions of the CHP. University employees are responsible for observing the provisions of the CHP and for reporting unsafe conditions to their immediate supervisors. Copies of the Chemical Hygiene Plan are available to all University laboratory employees and students.
All laboratories and studios which use chemicals are subject to the OSHA standard titled: Occupational Exposure to Hazardous Chemicals in Lab; commonly known as the "Laboratory Safety Standard". The major requirement of the Lab Standard is to develop a written, lab-specific Chemical Hygiene Plan (CHP) which addresses the policies, Standard Operating Procedures, training, record keeping, etc. that ensure that employees are protected from harm due to chemicals.
All new faculty, staff and students must attend the chemical safety presentation at their initial time of hire, and then pass a web-based chemical safety test for re-training. The test consists of questions related to specific chemical safety rules at the University. Once the test is passed, one can begin working with chemicals. . Notification of dates of safety presentations and test availability will be through campus email.
Enforcement of safety issues is a major responsibility, and not always an easy one to handle when it comes to student clothing choices and demand for comfort. Sometimes this means making judgment calls, but erring on the side of caution is better than being too permissive. It is the responsibility of the laboratory personnel to ensure that the students wear the appropriate PPE (personal protective equipment) and clothing in the laboratories. Sending students back to change clothing or shoes is not only the right thing to do, but is an obligation.