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This newsletter highlights events and programs offered through the Missouri Department of Labor and Industrial Relations.

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Stressing safety: Prestressed Casting Company joins SHARP

Safety & Health Achievement Recognition Program (SHARP) logoPrestressed Casting Company of Springfield is the latest Missouri business to be accepted into the prestigious Safety and Health Achievement Recognition Program (SHARP), and company officials and employees are already seeing the difference.

“Having the SHARP designation is just a plus for your workforce,” Prestressed Casting Company Safety Director Dean Padgett said. “It’s helpful for the company on being able to create a safe workplace. It’s better for acquiring future jobs from clients, and it helps create a better culture among our construction guys that it’s not just about working.”

SHARP honors small businesses that operate effective safety and health management programs in Missouri.

Prestressed Casting Company will be presented a SHARP flag and proclamation later this month, making 37 Missouri businesses currently accepted into SHARP. Padgett and others at Prestressed Casting Company take great pride in this achievement.
“I can talk to our guys and say, ‘Because of your efforts, look what we got. We have this achievement where we are recognized by the state,’” he said. “And, then our workers think, ‘We aren’t just construction workers anymore. We are safety workers recognized by the state.’”

Acceptance into SHARP begins with an On-Site Safety and Health Consultation where consultants with the Missouri Department of Labor conduct a mock OSHA-type inspection to help the business improve safety practices. The results of this inspection are confidential and are not shared with OSHA. The findings are meant to help identify and correct hazards without imposing costly fines, resulting in safer workplaces for employees and better bottom lines for the company.
“They are like walking books of knowledge,” Padgett said. “I learned so much through our consultant.”

In addition to providing recognition for committing to create a safe workplace, SHARP members are excluded from routine OSHA inspections for one to three years, saving the business time and money in potential fines.

To participate in SHARP, a business must have 250 employees or less at one location and less than 500 employees corporation wide.

If you are interested in taking the first steps toward becoming a SHARP company or would like assistance making your company a safer place to work, call 573-522-SAFE or complete the online application to schedule an On-Site Safety and Health consultation.

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Speaker's Bureau — Training to better your workplace

Speaker in a conference roomDo you want a better understanding of Missouri’s labor laws? Do you want to create a better workplace?

The Missouri Department of Labor and Industrial Relations offers nearly 30 different training sessions to help Missouri businesses. These classes cover topics ranging from creating safer environments for your employees to preventing discrimination to helping employees understand wage and hours laws.

Our knowledgeable program specialists conduct these trainings where they share their expertise and answer questions.

For a full list of trainings available, visit our Speaker’s Bureau webpage.

To sign up for a training session, complete the Speaker’s Bureau Request Form online or call 573-751-3978.

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Women’s Equality Day: Honoring Women in Government and Public Service

Sandra MooreWomen gained the right to vote nearly 100 years ago, and as each anniversary of this momentous event passes, we pause to reflect on the history and continued efforts toward equal rights for women.

“If we do not take a moment to reflect Women’s Equality Day, we run the risk of forgetting, and if we forget that there has been inequality for women that we had to address and recognize, we have the possibility of repeating our history,” said Urban Strategies Inc. President Sandra Moore.

Moore chose to dedicate her career to serving others, and this year, the National Women’s History Project chose to celebrate women like her who work in government and public service during Women’s Equality Day, which is Aug. 26.

In her current role, Moore oversees a non-profit organization that transforms distressed urban core communities into vibrant, safe, residential neighborhoods. She has also served as the director of the Missouri Department of Labor and Industrial Relations and an administrative judge with the United States Equal Employment Opportunity Commission.

“Working in public service suited me,” Moore said. “It suited my personality. I always felt I was going to be better when my work would serve a broad group of people.”

Moore credits the satisfaction she gets from working for the greater good to her family and witnessing kindness from her parents from an early age.

“I grew up in a household without many means but an enormous amount of heart,” she said. “I watched my parents give and give to our extended family.”

Moore noted that she is deeply grateful for the many individuals who reached out to her and mentored her or helped her grow throughout her career and education, but acknowledges that there were times her experiences were shaped by her gender.

“The most painful time was when I was in law school, and my son was born my last year of law school,” Moore said. “I was quite pregnant in my last semester at law school, and I felt very, very isolated, particularly by the men. Men would say things like, ‘I don’t want to sit next to you. You might have that baby while I am taking my test.’”

In addition to recognizing our past, Women’s Equality Day also aims to bring attention to current issues pertaining to gender equity.  Moore believes the most pressing issue in women’s equality today is equal pay.

“This country has got to get to a point where women are being paid equitable to males for equitable work,” Moore said. “It is at the core of any family, any individual’s stability to be able to earn money commensurate with the work you put out.”

Want to get involved? Check out one of these events throughout the state to join the celebration of Women’s Equality Day.

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