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Require all staff members to read and sign a statement of safety procedures

All staff members, as well as students, should be required to read the institution's lab safety rules.

by James A. Kaufman
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All staff members, as well as students, should be required to read the institution's lab safety rules. They should then sign a statement that they have read the rules, understand the content, and agree to follow the procedures and practices. These statements should be kept on file in the department office. This does several things. It makes you decide what the rules and policies are going to be; it shows everyone that you are concerned about health and safety; and it keeps a permanent record of your safety standards.

This is important for staff - and particularly for new employees. It makes the expectations very clear and sets the standard right from the beginning.

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It isn't necessary to write your own set of rules, policies and procedures. Starting points can be taken from the LSI Publications, Teacher's Resource Books, State Guides, NSTA or American Chemical Society publications.