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SCATS to add the Voluntary Protection Programs to its workplace safety and health recognition programs

Joseph (JD) Decker, Administrator for the State of Nevada’s Division of Industrial Relations announced today that the Safety Consultation and Training Section (SCATS) will take over the responsibility of overseeing Nevada’s Voluntary Protection Programs (VPP) starting July 1, 2017. Currently administered under Nevada’s Occupational Safety and Health Administration’s (OSHA) Enforcement section, this move will consolidate all OSHA employer recognition programs in Nevada under SCATS and help more Nevada employers gain access to the nationally-recognized VPP. 
“This is a great move for Nevada employers,” said Todd Schultz Chief Administrative Officer for SCATS. “Helping employers who want to excel at safety and health is what SCATS does best and the Voluntary Protection Programs is an excellent addition to our portfolio of workplace safety and health recognition programs.” 
The VPP promotes effective worksite-based safety and health. In the VPP, management, labor and OSHA establish cooperative relationships at workplaces that have implemented a comprehensive safety and health management system. Approval into the VPP is OSHA’s official recognition of the outstanding efforts of employers and employees who have achieved exemplary occupational safety and health and comes with a multi-year deferral from programmed OSHA enforcement inspections. 
In practice, VPP sets performance-based criteria for a managed safety and health system, invites sites to apply, and then assesses applicants against these criteria. Verification includes an application review and a rigorous onsite evaluation by a team of safety and health experts.
SCATS currently administers the Safety and Health Achievement Recognition Program (SHARP). The SHARP program is an elite group of businesses that have been recognized by SCATS for maintaining exemplary safety and health programs. Participation in the no-cost program is designed to provide incentives and support to employers to develop, implement and continuously improve safety and health programs at their worksite(s). By taking these proactive measures, a business can reduce accident costs and ensure compliance with OSHA regulations. 
The SHARP program is designed to help small employers with fewer than 250 employees while VPP caters to larger employers with over 250 employees. 
Businesses interested in the VPP or any other OSHA employer recognition programs in Nevada may contact SCATS 1-877-4SAFENV.