Celebrating 25 Years of National Safety Month

This year, we honor the essential work and legacy of safety professionals and our critical partners in safety.

Lorraine M. Martin
June 01, 2021

The year was 1996. Dolly the sheep was cloned, Oprah’s Book Club got its start and the Macarena dance craze swept the nation. 

It’s also the year NSC established June as National Safety Month.

The pandemic has forced our nation to reckon with the single greatest workplace safety threat in a generation while exacerbating other issues, like substance use and misuse and mental health distress. At the same time, the country is experiencing higher fatalities in our workplaces and on our roads.

As we look ahead to the future of work and safety, National Safety Month exemplifies the impact we’re able to have as America’s leading nonprofit safety advocate. This year, we honor the essential work and legacy of safety professionals and our critical partners in safety. I can think of no better way to mark the 25th anniversary of National Safety Month!

We’ve leaned on our safety professionals to rewrite safety protocols in response to COVID, recognize and respond to risks new and old, address psychological safety to ensure people feel safe at work, and so much more. It’s only fitting that, during the Year of the Safety Hero, we recognize them for everything they’ve done and continue to do —  not only to help us get through these challenging times, but to advance our organizations’ safety journeys in the process.   

We are calling on our 15,000 member companies, representing nearly 7 million employees, to dedicate the month of June to improving their safety culture. We are proud to provide free materials for employers on the following weekly topics: 

  • Week 1: Prevent Incidents Before They Start 
    Identifying risks and taking proactive safety measures to reduce hazard exposure on important topics from ergonomics to chemical management is crucial to creating a safe workplace.
  • Week 2: Address Ongoing COVID-19 Safety Concerns
    As the pandemic wears on, employers play an important role in the return to physical workspaces, building trust around vaccines, mental health and so much more.
  • Week 3: It’s Vital to Feel Safe on the Job
    Being able to be one’s self at work without fear of retaliation is necessary for an inclusive safety culture. Leading organizations focus not only on physical safety, but psychological safety — the ability to show and be one's self without fear of negative consequences.
  • Week 4: Advance Your Safety Journey
    Safety is all about continuous improvement. Whether organizationally or individually, NSC can help provide guidance for your path forward.

Looking Back

For over a quarter of a century, thousands of businesses, thought leaders and organizations have embraced our annual observance to save lives and reduce injuries at work and on the road — and everywhere in between. 

Safety is never a “one and done.” It takes ongoing, concerted effort and dedication. So, every year, local communities pass resolutions at the county, city and state level to raise awareness for safety. Business partnerships, such as with Lowe’s and UPS in the early years of National Safety Month, were instrumental to expanding the reach of our safety message. 

Such partnerships are just as vital today. This year, NSC is proud to partner with VelocityEHS – award-winning EHS & Sustainability Software – during the 25th anniversary of National Safety Month. 

We’re celebrating the observance’s silver anniversary and the Year of the Safety Hero by encouraging everyone to recognize a safety professional — or anyone who inspires them to be safe — with a donation to NSC. Every hero honored with a donation made through June will be matched up to $25,000, thanks to the generous support of Velocity EHS. 

30 Days of Safety in the Spotlight 

Because of our partners in safety – employers and policymakers, business leaders and people like you – NSC stands ready to provide workplaces everywhere with the resources and best practices they need to help keep people safe, from the workplace to anyplace.   

Thank you for helping us celebrate 25 years of National Safety Month. Check back for additional posts on our weekly topics. 

With your leadership, we can keep each other safe — this month and every month.

Lorraine M. Martin

Lorraine M. Martin is president and CEO of the National Safety Council.

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