The U.S. Department of Labor's Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) and the Marble Institute of America (MIA) in Cleveland have renewed their alliance to provide MIA members and others with information and training resources that will help them continue to protect employees' safety and health.

"The alliance will continue to demonstrate our commitment to finding cooperative ways to prevent workplace accidents," said Rob Medlock, area director of OSHA's Cleveland office. "It already has proven very successful, and we want to continue the excellent relationship that has helped so many companies in the natural stone industry."

During the initial two-year alliance, OSHA and MIA worked successfully together to develop and communicate information to help the institute's member employers and employees recognize and prevent job-related hazards, including exposure to silica and hazards related to handling slabs of stone. The alliance also has developed training and education programs for employers and employees.

"MIA's alliance with OSHA has had a very positive impact on the safety awareness of the natural stone industry and on the tools made available to help train employees and improve job safety," affirmed Gary Distelhorst, MIA's executive vice president. "We are committed to continuing our efforts with OSHA to achieve greater employee safety."

MIA represents professionals working with all types of natural stone, including marble, granite, limestone, quartz-based stone, slate travertine and other materials.   OSHA safety and health alliances are part of U.S. Labor Secretary Elaine L. Chao's ongoing efforts to improve the safety and health of employees through cooperative partnerships with trade associations, labor organizations, employers and government agencies. OSHA currently has more than 470 alliances throughout the nation with organizations committed to fostering safety and health in the workplace.

Under the Occupational Safety and Health Act of 1970, employers are responsible for providing a safe and healthy workplace for their employees. OSHA's role is to promote the safety and health of America's working men and women by setting and enforcing standards; providing training, outreach and education; establishing partnerships; and encouraging continual process improvement in workplace safety and health. For more information, visit www.osha.gov.