Frequently Asked Questions
Members of the Minnesota Safety Council receive free phone consultation from our staff of experts. Some questions come up regularly, and we've included some of them here. And since our Web site is up 24/7 and never sleeps, this can be a great place to get a quick answer.
To view Frequently Asked Questions, click on your category of interest.
Material Safety Data Sheets (MSDS)
Personal Protective Equipment (PPE)
Safety Coordinator Responsibilities
Health and Safety Fairs
I have to plan a safety fair. Where do I start?
Consider the following factors:
Some companies make it a family event and do it on the weekend, but most do it during the week and allow employees time for it around lunch. Summer is a very popular time, when events can be either indoors or outdoors.
It's not expensive to do. You may want fliers, particularly if you're inviting employees' families. Decorations are an option, too. You don't have to have food, but it helps. There shouldn't be any cost associated with the exhibitors you invited and, in fact, they may be willing to donate items and door prizes.
Safety fairs or wellness days are usually coordinated by the safety committee or other volunteers from within. Initially they should determine a theme; many fairs are themed as "off-the-job" safety. Next they should consider who they'll invite to participate. Exhibitors can include your company's insurance and health care providers. They are typically willing to come out and talk about the different plans they offer; health care providers may offer blood pressure tests and other kinds of simple screenings. Safety organizations like the Minnesota Safety Council can provide information about safety on and off the job, as well as print materials that can be distributed to employees and safety tools like bike helmets and smoke alarms. Other participants could include law enforcement and fire fighting personnel from the area, health clubs— they may be willing to donate a certificate for free use of their facilities—chiropractors and massage therapists, and running and biking clubs.
Get management support for time to plan and coordinate and for money. Brainstorm your goals and theme. Contact potential exhibitors several months out. Don't do the exact same thing every year. Rotate the planning committee to get new people and new ideas. Ask employees what they'd like.
You're getting information out to employees. Cholesterol and high blood pressure checks can benefit them enormously. It's a good time for people to ask questions that otherwise may not be easy to ask. You are promoting safety and showing that you care about your workers and their commitment to safety within the organization. It doesn't have to take a lot or resources and employees enjoy it.