The American Society of Safety Engineers (ASSE), representing more than 34,000 occupational safety, health and environmental professional members, kicked off its 10th annual ASSE kids’ ‘safety-on-the-job’ poster contest, which runs through February 14, 2012. The contest is for children ages 5-14 and aims to teach children about the importance of being safe at work and what occupational safety, health and environmental professionals do to protect people, property and the environment.

The winning poster from each of the five age groups is featured on the annual North American Occupational Safety and Health (NAOSH) Week poster distributed worldwide. The five grand prize winners and 15 runners-up each receive prizes and are recognized at the NAOSH kick-off events in Washington, D.C., in May. The posters that best illustrate ‘safety-on-the-job’ will win the contest.

The contest is open not only to ASSE members” children, grandchildren, nieces and nephews, but also to children of ASSE co-workers. ASSE members can also sponsor schools. To enter, a child must be sponsored by an ASSE member. Those seeking an ASSE member to request sponsorship can check with their local ASSE chapter, which can be found at NAOSH Week runs from May 6-12, 2012, and Occupational Safety and Health Professional Day is May 9, 2012.

All poster contest winners, contestants and their families along with ASSE members, Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) staff and Alliance partners, regulators and legislators, are invited to attend the annual NAOSH kick-off and poster contest awards events in Washington, D.C., this May 6 and 7. Events are scheduled to be held at the National Gallery of Art, the U.S. Department of Labor (DOL), the National Zoo, and more.

Today, 12 people a day die from on-the-job injuries in the U.S. Recent federal statistics show that in 2010, 4,547 workers died from on-the-job injuries and millions more suffered injuries and illnesses, according to the ASSE. Current statistics show:

  • 4,547 people died from on-the-job injuries in 2010, compared to 4,551 in 2009
  • Transportation-related fatalities continue to be the to cause of on-the-job deaths
  • Fatal workplace injuries among police officers increased by 40 percent
  • Private mining industry fatalities increased by 74 percent
  • Work-related fatalities resulting from fire more than doubled
  • Workplace homicides declined by 7 percent, but workplace homicides involving women increased by 13 percent
  • Workplace suicides declined slightly from a high of 263 in 2009 to 258 in 2010, the third highest annual total since the census report began
  • 27 states and Washington, D.C., reported higher numbers of fatal work injuries in 2010 than in 2009, 23 states reported lower numbers
  • The age group with the largest number of fatalities was 45-54 followed by 55-64, 35-44, and 25-34

Poster contest winners will be announced the first week of March on the ASSE NAOSH website. In addition to being featured on the NAOSH poster, the posters are displayed in Washington, D.C., during NAOSH Week at the DOL, the U.S. Capitol, and at ASSE”s annual Professional Development Conference and Exposition.