The DNR Health and Safety program is one of the functions of the DNR Office of Human Resources and is coordinated by the Department's Health and Safety Coordinator (HSC).
The HSC assists the various ODNR division and office personnel in administering health and safety functions to promote a safe and healthy working environment for employees and the general public who visit ODNR facilities.
Areas of responsibility include, but are not limited to, coordinating/ scheduling of training, medical testing, and compliance with safety regulations.
The safety regulations that the department must adhere to are found within the Public Employees Risk Reduction Program (PERRP), which was previously known as the Industrial Relations Public Employees OSHA program.
Some examples of these regulations are Hazard Communications, Lockout Tag-Out, Bloodborne Pathogens, Confined Spaces, Personal Protective Equipment (PPE), Respirator Medical Clearance, Audiometric Testing, etc.
The Fountain Square facility has employees who volunteer as safety wardens. All wardens are CPR and First Aid certified and they have first aid supplies in case of emergencies. They are also responsible for the evacuation of their building in case of fire and ensure compliance with tornado procedures.
The Labor Relations Section provides and/or coordinates the following Health and Safety services and/or programs. For general questions about ODNR Health and Safety programs, please contact the ODNR Health and Safety Coordinator (HSC), at (614) 265-6880.
When the health or safety of an employee or of any person or property entrusted to the employee's care could be adversely affected, the DNR Director has the authority to place employees on administrative leave with pay. The specific guidelines for administrative leave our outlined in the ODNR Administrative Leave Directive. Division/Office personnel should contact the DNR Health and Safety Coordinator to determine if such leave is appropriate. The HSC will coordinate with the OHR chief and Director's office for approval.
Pursuant to Ohio Revised Code 124.388, the ODNR Director is the only person who has the statutory authority to close a facility and place employees on administrative leave. The Health and Safety Coordinator will consult with the Director to obtain the proper approval to close the facility and place facility staff on administrative leave and/or send them home with pay for closing an ODNR facility for health and safety concerns (i.e., weather conditions, loss of heat or water, flood, etc.). For more information, please consult the DNR Facility Closure Procedure.
If an employee becomes physically or mentally unable to perform the essential job functions of his/her position, the employer may disability separate the employee from employment pursuant to Ohio Administrative Code Sections 123:1-33-02 (involuntary) and 123:1-33-03 (voluntary). This action allows the employer to fill the position permanently A separation may be voluntary or involuntary. In the latter case, employees may file an appeal with the State Personnel Board of Review and/or grievance? Once separated an employee has reinstatements rights to the former position or a similar position for three years from the date the employee became disabled. Prior to a separation, the HSC conducts pre-separation hearing affording the employee the opportunity to review the employer's documentation as well as submit information on his/her behalf.
Health and Safety Complaint Coordination
The Health and Safety Coordinator (HSC) responds and/or reviews health and safety complaints submitted by DNR employees. The Health and Safety Complaint form is a mechanism available to an employee to notify his/her supervisor of a health and safety violation and/or concern. Once a complaint form has been initiated, the supervisor forwards the completed form to the HSC. All health and safety complaints are then forwarded to the Health and Safety Committee for review. To view the HS Complaint form, click here (pdf).
Health and Safety Committee
The HSC co-chairs the ODNR Health and Safety Committee which is established pursuant to Article 11.12 of the OCSEA labor agreement and Article 14.08 of the FOP 2 labor agreement. The committee is comprised of equal members of labor and management representatives and currently meets once every month.
Health and Safety Training Coordination
The HSC coordinates various health and safety training programs when requested by division/office personnel. Current programs include Defensive Driving, Blood-Borne Pathogens, First Aid and CPR, Respirator Usage, Hearing Conservation, Lockout-Tagout, Vehicle Inspection, etc. For more information about these training programs, click here.
Independent Medical Exams
The HSC coordinates independent medical exams in accordance with Ohio Administrative Code Section 123:1-33-01 at the request of a division/office. The purpose of an independent medical exam is to determine if the employee is able to perform his/her essential job duties.
The HSC coordinates several medical testing programs in compliance with the Public Employee Risk Reduction Program guidelines which mirror the OSHA regulations in the areas of audiometric testing and respirator medical clearance. These testing programs are carried out at various work locations across the state by utilizing a mobile medical testing service. Pre-employment physicals may also be arranged onsite for large groups such as watercraft and wildlife cadet classes.
The Public Employee Risk Reduction Program conducts Safety Audits at the request of the Agency. Safety audits are a means for the agency to review their safety training, compliance with regulations, and equipment operations.
Safety Warden Program
The HSC coordinates the Fountain Square Complex Safety Warden Program. Safety Warden information is available on the LR Intranet site. Click here to view the Safety Warden list for Fountain Square.
The HSC coordinates various voluntary vaccination programs such as Rabies, Lyme, Hepatitis B. Many divisions with field staff offer these programs as a proactive and preventative measure. Additionally, OHR has offered influenza vaccinations administered at Fountain Square shots at the employee's cost.
Weather Emergency Coordination
The OHR coordinates compiling the list of essential employees for the Department and issues "essential employee" identification cards. An annual letter is sent usually in November reminding all DNR employees of both the Department's and State's weather emergency procedure. To view the DNR Weather Emergency Policy.
Workplace Violence Prevention
Workplace Violence prevention is the responsibility of all employees. The HSC provides information to new employees during orientation regarding the Department's Workplace Violence Policy.