NSC Names Multi-Sector Group to Help Solve Most Common Workplace Injury

Cross-industry experts in safety and health join NSC and Amazon to invent new ways to prevent ergonomic injuries.

December 13, 2021

ITASCA, IL - Building on the National Safety Council (NSC) partnership with Amazon (NASDAQ:AMZN) to solve the most common workplace injury in the U.S., America’s leading nonprofit safety advocate today named the founding members of the advisory council for this groundbreaking program to prevent ergonomic injuries — known as musculoskeletal disorders (MSDs) — at workplaces everywhere.

“For over a century, NSC has innovated new strategies to help people live safer, fuller lives — both on and off the clock,” said Lorraine Martin, president and CEO of the National Safety Council. “This collaboration is another important milestone in our work to prevent workplace injuries — and we’re in excellent company. With the experts on our multi-sector advisory council, we’re poised to ‘move the needle’ on ergonomic issues: a far-too-common safety challenge affecting one-quarter of the world’s population.”

“At Amazon, nothing is more important than the health and safety of our employees,” said Heather MacDougall, vice president of worldwide workplace health and safety at Amazon. “MSD-related injuries are the leading cause of workplace injuries across all industries. We are committed to reducing the risks associated with MSDs as we pursue our vision to become Earth’s Safest Place to Work.” 

Led by NSC, the inaugural advisory council meeting will be held today with representatives from the following organizations serving as founding members:

Auburn University
Benchmark Digital Partners
Ergonomics Center at North Carolina State
Heritage Health

Jacobs Engineering
Liberty Mutual Insurance
Lloyd’s Register Foundation
Lockheed Martin
Ohio State University
Pfizer, Inc.
Sandalwood Engineering & Ergonomics

Texas A&M University
United Airlines
Virginia Tech University
WorkCare, Inc.
Work Right NW
XPO Logistics

The advisory council is a volunteer group of experts in safety and health, ergonomics and innovation that will support the work of the program in the following ways:

  • Assist in practice, guidance and research efforts by providing expertise, insight, resources and access to networks that may enrich the body of knowledge.
  • Activate the program’s work through participation, insight and philanthropic support, including judging of innovation challenges and hackathons as well as grant applications. 
  • Amplify the program’s influence and voice, including communication, advocacy, positioning and policy efforts.

“Ergonomic issues are a prevalent challenge that impact many people around the world, especially in the workplace,” said Julia Abate, executive director, Ergonomics Center at North Carolina State University. “That’s why I’m thrilled to be joining the National Safety Council, Amazon and many of the foremost subject-matter experts on the advisory council to find solutions to this problem. While this is a daunting task, it is also a tremendous opportunity to support research and innovation that will ultimately make a positive impact in people’s lives.”

NSC will launch the following initiatives in the year ahead to achieve its goal of preventing MSD injuries before they start:

  • The MSD Pledge: The program is dedicated to helping all workplaces advance their safety journey. Through the MSD Pledge, companies small and large will be invited to have a seat at the table to help tackle this global challenge. 
  • Inaugural Hackathon Challenge: Individuals and organizations alike will have the opportunity to develop cutting-edge solutions to prevent and eliminate workplace-related MSDs. Prizes and grants will be awarded during this competition to honor innovation and help fund these solutions. 
  • Small Business and University Grants: Provide grants to small businesses, universities, and students that will fund research and innovation that help companies of all sizes achieve impact.
  • MSD 2025 Pioneering Research: Conduct research utilizing next-generation artificial intelligence, natural language processing, and machine learning tools to explore current and future MSD innovations and trends. The research will be available to all industries to explore and glean insights, with an initial white paper debuting in the second half of 2022. 

To learn more about this partnership, visit www.nsc.org/msdlab

About the National Safety Council
The National Safety Council is America’s leading nonprofit safety advocate – and has been for over 100 years. As a mission-based organization, we work to eliminate the leading causes of preventable death and injury, focusing our efforts on the workplace, roadway and impairment. We create a culture of safety to not only keep people safer at work, but also beyond the workplace so they can live their fullest lives.

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With a century-long legacy, the National Safety Council is a global center for safety expertise. Let's work together to align resources. We look forward to learning about ways we can join efforts to expand safety everywhere!

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