HAZARDOUS MATERIALS WORKER HEALTH AND SAFETY TRAINING FOR THE DOE NUCLEAR 
WEAPONS COMPLEX

Release Date:  August 12, 1999

RFA:  ES-99-010

National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences

Letter of Intent Receipt Date:  September 10, 1999
Application Receipt Date:  November 19, 1999

PURPOSE

The National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences (NIEHS) invites
applications for cooperative agreements to support the development of model
programs for the training and education of workers engaged in activities related
to hazardous materials and waste generation, removal, containment, transportation
and emergency response within the DOE Nuclear Weapons Complex.

The major objective of this solicitation is to prevent work related harm by
assisting in the training and education of workers in the DOE nuclear weapons
complex.  Safety and health training will transmit skills and knowledge to
workers in how best to protect themselves and their communities from exposure to
hazardous materials encountered during hazardous waste operations, facility
decommissioning and decontamination, hazardous materials transportation,
environmental restoration of contaminated facilities or chemical emergency
response.  Throughout the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) nuclear weapons
complex, a vast and intensive cleanup effort is now underway. Tens of thousands
of DOE employees involved in the cleanup program require safety and health
training to help reduce the risk of their being exposed in the course of their
work to hazardous materials and hazardous waste products. One effort to enhance
training capabilities at these sites has been through the National Institute of
Environmental Health Sciences (NIEHS) Worker Education and Training Program
(WETP).

A major goal of this program is to assist organizations with development of
institutional competency to provide appropriate model training and education
programs to hazardous materials and waste workers in the DOE nuclear weapons
complex.  Both NIEHS and DOE recognize the importance of effectively managing
training resources to maintain and improve federal and contractor workforce
competencies.  Proper use of resources will result in federal and contractor
employees who are highly skilled and capable of carrying out our critical
missions in a safe and reliable manner consistent with recognized standards of
excellence.  Continuing improvements will assist in planning and conduct of
training programs to ensure that these programs are closely aligned with mission
priorities and administered efficiently.

HEALTHY PEOPLE 2000

The Public Health Service (PHS) is committed to achieving the health promotion
and disease prevention objectives of "Healthy People 2000", a priority setting
process for federal public health activities.  This RFA, Hazardous Materials
Worker Health and Safety Training in the DOE Nuclear Weapons Complex, is related
to the priority areas of occupational health and environmental health. Further
information regarding the updating of "Healthy People 2000" can be obtained from
the Web site at: http://odphp.osophs.dhhs.gov/pubs/hp2000/default.htm.  Potential
applicants may also obtain a copy of "Healthy People 2000" (Full Report: Stock
No. 017-001-00474-0) through the Superintendent of Documents, Government Printing
Office, Washington, DC 20402-9325 (telephone 202-512-1800).

ELIGIBILITY REQUIREMENTS

Applicants must be domestic nonprofit organizations that demonstrate expertise
and experience in implementing and operating training and education programs for
workers.  Such organizations must demonstrate the ability to reach and
involve in training programs target populations of workers. Any nonprofit
organization providing worker health and safety education and training may apply. 
Minority individuals, disabled persons and women are encouraged to apply as
Principal Investigators, as well as Historically Black Colleges and Universities
(HBCUs) and other minority institutions and organizations.

Nonprofit organizations are corporations or associations whose net earnings may
in no part lawfully accrue to the benefit of any private shareholder or
individual. Proof of nonprofit status must be provided with the application for
assistance.

Applicants are required to show proof of an ability to maintain satisfactory
management and accounting systems to control funds and expenditures.

Awardees may use services, as appropriate, of other organizations, public or
private, necessary to develop, administer, or evaluate proposed worker training
programs.  All provisions of the National Institutes of Health Grants Policy
Statement will apply to awards made by NIEHS for this program. This information
is available at: http://www.nih.gov/grants/policy/nihgps.

MECHANISM OF SUPPORT

Awards will be made as cooperative agreements (U-45) for a period of up to five
years from FY 2000 through 2004. Funds for these awards will include $8.5 million
from the DOE Environmental Management Program, which are transferred annually to
NIEHS through an Interagency Agreement.

The administrative and funding instrument used for this program is a cooperative
agreement (U45), an "assistance" mechanism (rather than an "acquisition"
mechanism) in which substantial NIH scientific and/or programmatic involvement
with the awardee is anticipated during performance of the activity. Under the
cooperative agreement, the NIH purpose is to support and/or stimulate the
recipient"s activity by involvement in and otherwise working jointly with the
award recipient in a partner role, but it is not to assume direction, prime
responsibility, or a dominant role in the activity.  Consistent with this
concept, the dominant role and prime responsibility for the activity resides with
the awardee(s) for the project as a whole, although specific tasks and activities
in carrying out the studies will be shared among the awardees and the NIEHS
Program Administrator.

Annual renewal will be based on availability of funds, staff review of progress
toward achieving training objectives, compliance with the terms and conditions
of awards and submission of copies of all training and educational materials
used under the award to NIEHS.  The awards will include funding for targeted
training to specific populations that have been identified in the respective
authorizing statute for this program.

The National Defense Authorization Act for fiscal years 1992 and 1993 (42 USC
7274(d)) authorized the Secretary of Energy in section 3131(a)(1)(A)-(B) to make
awards: "to provide training and education to persons who are or may be engaged
in hazardous substance response or emergency at Department of Energy nuclear
weapons facilities, and to develop response curricula for such training and
education."  The Secretary was further authorized in Section 3131(a)(2)(A)-(B)
to make the training awards to non-profit organizations demonstrating
capabilities in: "implementing and conducting effective training and education
programs relating to the general health and safety of workers, and identifying,
and involving in training, groups of workers whose duties include hazardous
substance response or emergency response."

Under Section 126(g) of Superfund Amendments and Reauthorization Act (SARA),
NIEHS developed and administers a Worker Education and Training Program in
consultation with the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA).  During 1992, the
DOE evaluated this program developed by NIEHS for suitability of adaptation to
its own program and training needs, and determined that the program was suitable. 
In an effort to rapidly move to the implementation stage and to leverage program
resources, DOE entered into an agreement with NIEHS to award and administer the
grants and to adapt its existing program to meet the needs of the DOE nuclear
weapons complex.

FUNDS AVAILABLE

Projected funding of $8.5 million at the currently authorized levels for FY 2000
will be awarded to support model programs for targeted training.  During FY 2000,
NIEHS plans to fund between 5 and 10 cooperative agreements in response to this
RFA for a period of five years.  The anticipated starting date
for the initial annual period will be September 1, 2000.

BACKGROUND INFORMATION

The Superfund Amendments and Reauthorization Act of 1986 (SARA), Section 126(g),
authorizes an assistance program for training and education of workers engaged
in activities related to hazardous waste generation, removal, containment or
emergency response and hazardous materials transportation and emergency response. 
The Congress assigned responsibility for administering this program to the
National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences (NIEHS), an Institute of the
National Institutes of Health (NIH) within the Public Health Service (PHS) of the
US Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS).

Protecting worker health and safety through the delivery of safety and health
training is a priority of the Secretary of Energy and is a primary goal of the
Office of Environmental Management (EM).  As the Department of Energy"s (DOE)
mission has shifted from weapons production to environmental restoration, the
site worker will be exposed to new operations and hazards while conducting
restoration activities, many of which will be associated with potential exposure
to hazardous substances and wastes.

To provide protection to workers" health and safety, all workers at DOE sites
engaged or potentially engaged in environmental restoration activities, including
hazardous substance response or emergency response, are required by CERCLA and
respective DOE Orders to meet the requirements of the Occupational Safety and
Health Administration"s (OSHA) regulations 20 CFR 1910.120 and the EPA Hazardous
Waste Operations and Emergency Response (HAZWOPER) training requirements (40 CFR
300.150).

Tens of thousands of workers are engaged in hazardous waste work at DOE
facilities. An initial needs assessment at the beginning of the program conducted
by NIEHS estimated that between 10,000 and 60,000 workers at DOE facilities would
require initial HAZWOPER training. Training needs range from basic hazardous
waste operations and emergency response (HAZWOPER) courses to asbestos and lead
abatement, confined space, hazard communication, respirator, radiation, and
general industry safety courses.

Environmental cleanup is a complex undertaking which may often pose significant
dangers to remediation workers as well as to residents of the surrounding
community. Throughout the Department of Energy (DOE) complex, contamination
issues resulting from the historic mission of weapons production, as well as from
extensive use of radioactive materials and highly toxic chemicals - have created
a unique challenge for those managing environmental cleanups.  There is clearly
a need for highly trained workers to carry out the actual remediation work.

In order to develop a better understanding of the labor market for hazardous
waste workers, NIEHS contracted to study the labor market associated with
hazardous waste cleanup work. This study is available at:
http://204.177.120.20/wetp/clear/resource/minimum.htm.

Based on the actual experience at a number of hazardous waste sites across the
nation, it is projected that on-site remedial action alone will require
between 1990-2010 three million job years, or 4.5 billion hours, of labor.
Site operations and maintenance work will require another one billion labor
hours. From this total, A total of 1,108,696 remedial action and O&M job years
are projected to be generated for hazardous waste cleanup of the DOE nuclear
weapons complex, with the largest portion of these jobs being generated in the
period from 2001-2005.

Using the report"s projections from EPA and DOE data, remediation job demand
is expected to grow by 60 percent, or almost 300,000 jobs, from the 1990-1995
five year period through the five year period 1995-2000 -- from 447,000 to
740,000. Demand for jobs continues to grow by nearly another 300,000 in the
2000-2005 time interval. During this peak period nearly 2 million jobs will
require workers. As many as 7.5 million more workers will require training --
either basic or refresher. Demand remains high from 2005-2010 and then begins
to taper off -- with a rather optimistic assumption that most cleanup
activities will be completed in 25 to 30 years.

The Department of Energy Office of Worker and Community Transition (WT)
reports in their Annual Report on Contractor Work Force Restructuring Fiscal
Year 1998 that the prime contractor employment has steadily decreased from
about 145,000 employees in 1992 to about 100,000 in 1998. WT expects a 3,000
to 5,000 employee decrease per year through 2001 and additional 5,000
employees due to additional outsourcing. This report can be can be found on
the DOE/WCT homepage at http://www.wct.doe.gov/owct/whatsnew.htm.

Model training programs for hazardous waste workers and emergency responders
shall satisfy minimum requirements as specified in Federal OSHA rules and
other related regulations which have been or may be promulgated.  Training
programs shall also meet the minimum requirements specified in the Minimum
Criteria for Worker Health and Safety Training for Hazardous Waste Operations
and Emergency Response, published April, 1990 as a result of an NIEHS
sponsored technical workshop on training quality.  Consideration should also
be given to the recently published Appendix E of 29 CFR 1910.120 (59 FR 43268,
August 22, 1994), which references much of the NIEHS Minimum Criteria Worker
Health and Safety Training for Hazardous Waste Operations and Emergency
Response.  This OSHA guidance is available at:
http://www.osha.gov/pls/oshaweb/owadisp.show_document?p_table=STANDARDS&p_id=9770.

The DOE Order 440.1 provides the basic foundation for a worker protection
program and that some DOE elements or contractors may need or decide to go
beyond the Order"s minimum requirements in establishing programs to protect
workers from hazards associated with their activities.  This order should be a
part of any training activities at Doe sites and may be referenced at :
http://www.explorer.doe.gov:1776/pdfs/doe/doetext/neword/440/g4401-1.html.

DOE Order 360 establishes the requirements for the training and qualification
of technical employees and managers whose position requires them to provide
management direction or oversight that could impact the safe operation of a
DOE defense nuclear facility. This order may be referenced at:
http://cted.inel.gov/cted/360-1.html.

All elements of the DOE Systematic Approach to Training (SAT) will be applied by
potential applicants as appropriate, using current methods for the analysis,
design, development, delivery and evaluation of Safety and Health training
events.  This method is recognized in the DOE complex as the most comprehensive
and appropriate for innately dynamic, regulatory-driven safety and health
training. Further information about the DOE SAT is available at: 
http://tis.eh.doe.gov/techstds/standard/hdbk1074/hdb1074.html.

The DOE HAZWOPER Handbook is an important resource for DOE training program
development and provides tools and guidance to establish and implement
comprehensive, cost-effective, hazard-based worker health and safety programs
that are an integral part of accomplishing work on time and within budget. This
Handbook has been developed to assist Department of Energy (DOE) and contractor.
It is available at:
http://tis-hq.eh.doe.gov:80/docs/haz_waste_activity_handbook/hwa_handbook.html.

PROGRAM DESCRIPTION

The NIEHS Worker Education and Training Program, in partnership with the DOE
Environmental Management Program, has supported qualified domestic nonprofit
organizations to develop and administer model health and safety education
programs for hazardous materials or waste workers within the nuclear weapons
complex.

Target populations for training in the DOE nuclear weapons complex include those
covered by requirements of Federal Occupational Health and Safety Administration
(CFR, Title 29, Part 1910, which is found at:
http://www.osha.gov/pls/oshaweb/owadisp.show_document?p_table=STANDARDS&p_id=9765
) and Environmental Protection
Agency (CFR, Title 40, Part 311) standards for Hazardous Waste Operations and
Emergency Response, regulations governing the NIEHS Hazardous Waste Worker
Training Program (CFR, Title 42, Part 65), as well as hazardous materials
transportation workers regulated by the US Department of Transportation  (Further
guidance on DOT Hazmat Employees is available at:
http://hazmat.dot.gov/regs/rules.htm).

Congress recognized this need and authorized the Secretary of Energy, through the
National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Years 1992 and 1993, Section 3131,
to award grants for training and education for persons engaged in hazardous
substance response or emergency response at DOE nuclear weapons facilities.  For
purposes of Section 3131, the term "hazardous substance" in addition to its
definition under CERCLA includes radioactive waste, mixed radioactive and
hazardous waste.

In an effort to rapidly move to the implementation stage and to leverage program
resources, DOE studied the suitability of NIEHS as awards administrator for the
DOE program.  Based on a review of the NIEHS program, DOE entered into an
agreement with NIEHS to award and administer the grants and to adapt the HAZWOPER
program to meet the needs of DOE.

Initial awards under the DOE program were made in 1993 for a three-year period. 
Additional funding was secured for a second round of training awards which began
in 1995. A briefing for DOE staff involved in the initiative was held in August
1995 to gather input on DOE priorities for the final funding plan.  Adjustments
were made to reflect the suggestions of DOE staff. A review by the National
Advisory Environmental Health Sciences Council (NAEHSC) was completed on
September 14-15, 1995 and awards were made, effective later that year.

The goal of the DOE/NIEHS Worker Training Program has been to provide site-
specific, quality training to workers in a timely and cost-effective manner,
through a partnership involving government, contractors, and labor organizations. 
A cornerstone of the program is the use of "worker-trainers," employees well-
versed in performing a given task in a hazardous environment who are trained to
instruct other workers. Benefits of the partnership include fostering cooperation
between management and workers, improving efficiency and quality of training,
improving the ability to address worker concerns, and empowering all stakeholders
to address site-specific safety and health needs.

NIEHS, through its awardees, has provided high quality hazardous substance
response or emergency response training to ensure that: (1) DOE site workers are
aware of the hazards that exist at DOE sites, (2) workers are prepared to work
safely in such hazardous environments to prevent accidents from occurring, and
(3) workers have sufficient knowledge of their work environment and hazardous
conditions to identify hazardous situations and to take appropriate actions to
protect themselves, fellow workers, and the environment.

Across the DOE complex, approximately 1.2 million contact hours of hazardous
materials training were delivered by the DOE/NIEHS awardees between 1994 and
1998. During this period, dozens of different courses were offered by nine
awardees to workers at sites throughout the DOE complex. During the four years
covered, the largest category of training was Site Worker Refresher, which
accounted for 48 percent of course attendees between 1994 and 1998.  The second
largest category was Site Worker, which accounted for nearly 11,000 course
participants and almost half of all contact hours of training provided between
1994 and 1998. The next largest category was RCRA/Industrial, followed by
Asbestos Abatement, Radiation, Emergency Response, and Lead Abatement.

While the NIEHS awardees have provided training at more than thirty DOE sites,
half of the trainees worked at two of the largest sites, Hanford and Oak
Ridge, where more than 36,000 course participants received over half a million
contact hours of training.  At the Hanford and Oak Ridge sites, nearly 20,000
course participants (53 percent of those trained between 1994 and 1998)
received nearly 160,000 contact hours of Site Worker Refresher Training, and
close to 10,000 participated in RCRA/Industrial training.

GENERAL TRAINING OBJECTIVES AND COMPONENTS

Major program objectives for the future of the DOE/NIEHS Worker Education and
Training Program include to:

o  Establish DOE and contractor safety and health training programs with best
practices by drawing on the skills and knowledge of experienced workers on the
job.

o  Facilitate and promote a culture of continuous learning, integrated safety
management and improving task readiness within the DOE complex.

o  Act as a prime source for new training methodologies, innovative
techniques, and lessons learned for all DOE operations through partnering with
site contractors, regulatory personnel and other stakeholders.

o  Reduce safety and health training costs through standardization,
centralized partner development, and minimizing necessary travel and expenses.

o  Reduce redundancy within the DOE complex by utilizing existing quality,
safety and health training programs located in partner organizations and
integrating best-in-class technical training program capabilities.

o  Maximize the use of advanced training technology supported learning tools
where available and appropriate for effective delivery and evaluation while
integrating web-based, virtual and computer-based methods with traditional
hands-on and classroom centered learning.

Awards will be made for direct student and worker trainer training, technical
support of training, and training program evaluation.  It is believed that
adequate curricula and training materials exist for worker training that can
be adapted with minimal effort.  Means of multiplying training are also
encouraged to meet the need, thus, programs such as effective train the
trainer programs are encouraged.  Programs targeted to multi-state and
nationwide coverage to reach wider worker populations will be given preference
in review and funding.  Applications will not be considered that cover
municipalities or other jurisdictions covering less than two states. 
Applicants are also encouraged to develop plans for independently continuing
the program.

Applicants should refer to SARA Section 126 requirements for training. 
Coverage of all hazardous waste and emergency response workers is based on
potential exposure and health risk.  The language of section 126 (d)(1) and
(g) is clear that training scope be broad.  Section 126 states that the
training be required for personnel engaged in hazardous substance removal or
other activities, such as those involved in transportation, which expose or
potentially expose such workers to hazardous substances.  The same section
later requires that special training be provided to workers who may be exposed
to unique or special hazards.  Section (g)(1) authorizes this training
assistance program for the training of workers who are or may be engaged in
activities related to hazardous waste removal or containment or emergency
response.  The training scope covers worker health protection from hazardous
waste work and exposure to hazardous substances in the broadest sense. The
applicant shall identify workers or groups of workers who need to be trained
in hazardous substance response or emergency response to ensure their health
and safety.  These target populations may include the existing DOE workforce,
those likely to perform DOE environmental clean-up and waste management work
within 120 days following the completion of training, those involved in waste
transportation on, to, and from DOE sites, appropriate supervisors and
managers of contractor and subcontractor activities, emergency response
personnel with site mutual aid agreements, and appropriate Federal, State, and
local government officials who are involved in compliance efforts.

Cooperative agreement awardees are expected to make a reasonable effort to
develop cooperative relationships with DOE training managers to: (1) identify
what training courses are needed to ensure that applicable health and safety
training requirements are met, (2) accurately determine the number of
employees who need training, and (3) ensure that training meets site-specific
needs and is consistent with established quality standards. Such arrangements
should be described in greater detail in the training plan.

Two or more nonprofit organizations may join in a single application and share
resources in order to maximize worker group coverage, enhance the
effectiveness of training, and bring together appropriate academic disciplines
and talents.  Such arrangements are strongly encouraged.  Joint applications
must have specific plans and mechanisms to implement the cooperative
arrangements necessary for program integration and to insure effectiveness. 
Specific expertise, facilities or services to be provided by each
participating member must be identified.  Awardees submitting competing
continuation applications should describe, along with other progress, how they
have met special cooperative agreement terms and conditions of their awards,
including their interaction with other investigators and NIEHS program staff.

A list of curricula developed by current NIEHS awardees (On the Web at:
http://204.177.120.20/forms/curricula/ in Adobe Acrobat format) and
copies of the Minimum Criteria for Worker Health and Safety Training for
Hazardous Waste Operations and Emergency Response (On the Web at:
http://204.177.120.20/wetp/clear/resource/mincrter.html) may be obtained from:

National Clearinghouse for Worker Safety and Health Training
for Hazardous Materials, Waste Operations and Emergency Response
5107 Benton Avenue
Bethesda, MD 20814
Tele: 301-571-4226
Fax: 301-897-5848
Email: rra@dgs.dgsys.com or chouse@dgsys.com
Web Page: http://204.177.120.20/index.htm

Copies of individual curricula developed by current awardees are available in
the Clearinghouse reading room and may also be obtained from the Clearinghouse
at the above address for the cost of reproduction and handling.

An essential component of health and safety programs for those who work with
hazardous materials is appropriate education and training.  The Superfund
Amendments and Reauthorization Act of 1986 addresses this in Section 126 which
requires the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) to
promulgate standards for the health and safety protection of employees in this
area.  OSHA final rule 29 CFR 1910.120 Hazardous Waste and Emergency Response
Operations was promulgated on March 6, 1989 with an effective date of March 6
1990 Further information about OSHA resources and interpretations of HAZWOPER
training requirements can be found at:
http://www.osha-slc.gov/SLTC/hazardouswaste/index.html.

A minimum level of training for hazardous materials and waste workers and
supervisors is specified in SARA Section 126(d).  General site workers are
required to receive a minimum of 40 hours of initial instruction off site and
a minimum of three days of actual field experience under the direction of a
trained, experienced  supervisor at the time of assignment.  Supervisors are
required to receive the same training as general workers and a minimum of
eight hours of specialized training in managing hazardous waste operations.

The immediate goal of worker health and safety training is educational in
nature, designed to provide students with relevant information, program-
solving skills, and the confidence needed to use these tools.  Long-term goals
of the model training programs should be to assure that workers become and
remain active participants in determining and improving the health and safety
conditions under which they work and that avenues for collaborative employer-
employee relationships in creating safe workplaces are established.

Worker safety and health training is adult-based, action-oriented, and result-
centered. The goals and objectives of worker training focus on outcomes rather
than on learning for its own sake.  Workers come to training with a great
volume of experience, and are, in many ways, the richest resources of a
training class. Experience shows that successful adult education often
emphasizes peer-sharing activities, such as problem-solving and simulation
exercises, that tap the experience of the learner. Successful worker training
often mirrors the way people learn at work -- from each other. After training,
workers should be able to bring what they have learned in the classroom or
work-site training back to their jobs.

NIEHS Focus on Health Disparities

Health disparities exist between citizens of lower socioeconomic status
(including minorities and other medically under-served citizens) and those
more economically advantaged. The President has committed the Nation to
eliminating such disparities while continuing the progress that has been made
in improving the overall health of the American people. As the primary federal
agency responsible for supporting research, prevention, and training efforts
to reduce the adverse health impact of environmentally related diseases, the
NIEHS seeks to expand its leadership role in addressing such conditions in
socio-economically disadvantaged populations and in developing tools and
strategies that will prove effective in eliminating health disparities. The
NIEHS is committed to supporting research and training activities aimed at
lessening the environmental health consequences associated with lower
socioeconomic status.

Activities conducted under this RFA should be consistent with Federal
Executive Order No. 12898 entitled, "Federal Actions to Address Environmental
Justice in Minority Populations and Low-Income Populations."  To the extent
practicable and permitted by law, applicants shall make achieving
environmental justice part of their project"s mission by identifying and
addressing, as appropriate, disproportionately high and adverse human health
effects of environmental contaminants on minority, low-income, and medically
under-served communities, including African, Hispanic, Asian, and Native
Americans. The complete text of the Federal Executive Order No. 12898 can be
found at http://www.epa.gov/docs/oejpubs/execordr.txt.html.  Additional
information on the Environmental Justice Initiative in EPA"s Waste Programs
can be found at http://www.epa.gov/swerosps/ej.

Applications should include plans for reaching under-served workers in the
proposed target populations especially those disadvantaged in education,
language skills or limited in literacy.  The inclusion of institutions and
organizations that have historical involvement and expertise in responding to
environmental justice issues is also strongly encouraged.

Participation of minority institutions and community-based organizations from
people of color communities may include the:

o  Adaptation of curricula to address health disparities and environmental
justice concerns,
o  Development of training programs that outreach to environmentally
disadvantaged groups and non-English speaking populations, and
o  Delivery of high quality training that can augment efforts to promote toxic
use reduction, emergency preparedness in the community, chemical process
safety and pollution prevention.

New Program Initiatives

Due to the complexity and the number of new emerging training innovations and
technologies occurring in the worker health and safety arena, NIEHS has
identified several training opportunities that are specifically related to the
advancement of the Worker Education and Training Program.  It is important
that these new emerging training technologies and approaches be woven and
integrated into the framework of the program. NIEHS has learned that
successful examples of training partnerships involve the creation of clear
mechanisms for assuring avenues for input and collaboration by labor,
management, local government officials and other stakeholders, as well as a
vision for integrating training into other workplace programs and initiatives. 
In addition, it is clear that the context and technical approaches to safety
and health training have undergone a rapid transition over the past decade, as
computer and telecommunications technology have unleashed a wealth of
technical information resources and established innovative modes of training
development, delivery and evaluation.

Below are lists of these innovations, many of which have grown out of NIEHS-
sponsored technical workshops, with background information pertaining to these
new concerns and how they relate to the overall Worker Education and Training
Program. This list is provided to stimulate the thinking of potential awardees
by illustrating various types of training innovations and showing its
application, and potential linkages.  This list is not intended to be
complete, and investigators may study these and many other topics that meet
the objectives of the RFA.

o  Targeted model training programs - Hazardous waste and emergency response
workers represent a diverse training population ranging from technical/
professional and supervisory personnel to trade and industrial workers. 
Because of this diversity, NIEHS and its awardees have needed to be innovative
in designing their training programs. Over the last eleven years, several
distinct models have emerged.  They include:

o  Models for Training a Technical/Professional Audience - These models are
designed for a more educated learning audience, perhaps more comfortable in a
traditional classroom setting.  Curriculum materials are comprehensive,
including the development of instructor and student materials, slide and video
presentations, site simulations, and hands on training. In addition, borrowing
from the more participatory models described below, the technical training has
been augmented with more interactive learning approaches to aid in effective
problem analysis and problem solving.

o  Models for Low Literacy, Limited English Language Fluency - These models
utilized special learning materials and instructional techniques to
effectively reach their training audience. These populations are often poorly
served in the traditional training environment.  Learning materials have been
translated into appropriate languages and geared to the appropriate literacy
level of the particular training population.  In addition, these models
utilize an interactive and participatory approach to learning rather than the
more traditional lecture format.

o  Trade or Occupation Specific Models  - These models are tailored to
specific occupations or trades involved in hazardous waste handling and
emergency response (e.g., laborers, ironworkers, chemical workers).  They
include simulations or site specific problems encountered specifically by
these specific trades or occupations. While trainees are exposed to all the
core curriculum areas fundamental to hazardous wastes training, the curriculum
also includes trade specific information. Some of these models utilize aspects
of the train-the-trainer approach described below in order to maximize
training resources and expand the programmatic reach of hazardous waste
training.

o  Train-the-Trainer Models - These models are designed so that lay or
worker/supervisor trainers can guide trainees (co-workers) through classroom
activities and simulations, acting as facilitators.  Curriculum materials
include facilitator resource guides and student activities, including small
group research, problem solving exercises, interactive video and hands-on
activities (for example, proper use of respirators, spill response and
simulated site cleanups). In addition, worker trainers may play critical roles
in program evaluation and measuring the effectiveness of training impacts.

o  Integrated Safety Management Systems (ISMS) - DOE and NIEHS are committed
to embracing Integrated Safety Management (ISM) principles.  The objective of
ISM is to systematically integrate safety into management and work practices
at all levels so that missions are accomplished while protecting the public,
the worker, and the environment.  This is to be accomplished through effective
integration of safety management into training activities and all facets of
work planning and execution.  Efforts should be undertaken to build ISM
curricula modules into existing 1910.120 Hazwoper training courses through
basic and refresher classes.  Cooperative agreement awardees are expected to
embrace the ISM guiding principles and to work with facility training managers
and safety and health managers to ensure that their training supports the
facilities" efforts to implement ISM.  Further detailed information and
resources for ISM training development is accessible through the DOE
Integrated Safety Management System Web Site at: http://tis.eh.doe.gov/ism.

o  Training evaluation and measuring effectiveness - Evaluation of worker
safety and health training programs is critical to assure they are achieving
the results intended. Worker training programs, because they are geared toward
success at work as well as in the classroom, are especially in need of
evaluation.  Evaluation should determine not only how well a program is
implemented and how much knowledge is gained by students, but also actual
outcomes of evaluation, i.e., what changes occur at work after training is
complete.  These changes may be increased awareness of health and safety
risks, changes in attitude and behavior at work, or changes in actual work
processes or deployment of equipment and technology.  Knowing the role that
worker training plays in bringing about these changes is an important part of
an evaluation program.  Worker training is not a panacea for solving workplace
problems, but research increasingly shows its critical role in stimulating
improvement in working conditions and workplace productivity.  A recent NIOSH
report reviews data found in the literature reflecting the significance of
training in meeting effectiveness outcomes.  The NIOSH report finds that here
is much positive evidence but the results seem very selective and highly
qualified.  Further information on the NIOSH Evaluation Report is available at
http://www.cdc.gov/niosh/98-145-b.html.  Further information on NIEHS training
evaluation efforts is available from the "Resource Guide For Evaluating Worker
Training: A Focus on Safety & Health".  This document is available on the web
in Portable Document Format (pdf) at:  
http://204.177.120.20/wetp/clear/downloads/resourceguide.pdf.

o  Training and integration with workplace Safety & Health programs þ Health
and safety training is valuable as a key component of a comprehensive health
and safety program and can be an important catalyst for assuring employee and
employer involvement in illness and injury prevention.  In most work places,
workers" ability to make changes or control health and safety hazards and
risks is limited.  Therefore, unless the training program is supported by a
strong health and safety program, it can help workers do little more than
understand how they and the organization might be able to improve conditions.
The most effective health and safety training is integrated with comprehensive
systems of safety.  It helps workers to understand their roles within those
systems and encourages their active participation in maintaining and
strengthening those systems.  On November 12-13, 1998, a National Technical
Workshop was held in Silver Spring, Maryland at the George Meany Center to
develop a consensus document "Guidelines for Training in Support of Workplace
Safety and Health Programs."  The purpose of this guidelines document is to
provide a comprehensive source of guidance and information to aid employers,
trainers, training providers, and training program developers in the
development, delivery, evaluation and continual improvement of training to
support and enhance workplace safety and health. Opportunities for including
all stakeholders in an integrated workplace safety and health program will
enhance the training component and enhance overall worker protection. Further
information on this workshop report is available at
http://204.177.120.20/wetp/clear/resource/minimum.htm.

o  Innovative technology deployment and training - In defining ways to inject 
health and safety considerations into the process of developing and deploying
innovative technologies in the workplace, a key strategy is to create worker
training opportunities when health and safety risks finally become the focus
of attention. Far too often, even when the focus is brought to bear on health
and safety, the risks addressed are those faced by the public, such as
contaminated drinking water from a hazardous waste site. Little information
has been developed regarding the safety and health hazards associated with
environmental remediation technologies. Consequently, those tasked with
technology selection often do not consider the safety and health implications
of their decisions and the costs associated with the use of personal
protective equipment (PPE), operator training, and the planning required to
ensure the safe operation of potentially hazardous cleanup technologies. This
is an important area for training development. Further information on NIEHS
efforts in examining innovative technology and training is available from the
report "Innovative Technology Guidance Document: Remembering the Worker". This
document is also available on the web at
http://204.177.120.20/wetp/clear/resource/minimum.htm.

o  Advanced Training Technology (ATT) and distance learning in safety and
health - The development and application of Advanced Training Technologies
(ATT), which includes computer-based training (CBT), internet-based training
(WBT), distance learning, teleconferencing, multimedia, and courseware
applications, is advancing at an explosive rate as computer and communication
technology advances continue. Through a recent workshop and technical report,
NIEHS Worker Training Program has attempted to develop a framework for
evaluating the deployment and application of ATT methods to Hazwoper and
Hazmat safety and health training programs.  This framework has considered
specific media selection models, as well as the institutional capacity, cost,
and effectiveness of adopting ATT methods.  Important challenges for the
future of ATT will include the identification of issues involved in using
virtual training instead of, or alongside, hands-on training and the efficacy
of new technologies in responding to the need to evaluate skills development
and competency, developing effective programs to help instructors master new
technologies and evaluate the effectiveness of ATT methods.  Further
information regarding the Technical Workshop Report on ATT and Hazwoper
Training is available at
http://204.177.120.20/wetp/clear/resource/minimum.htm.

o  Trainer the trainer programs in worker health and safety - Key to the
success of the WETP has been the continuing development of trainers at the
local level throughout the United States. A goal of this effort has been to
establish a national consensus for how to maintain the delivery of high
quality HAZWOPER training through the ongoing support and development of both
professional and worker trainers.  A technical workshop to examine these
issues was held in November 1997.  The workshop helped to explore the
characteristics of effective Train-the-Trainer programs in safety and health. 
The workshop report provides a brief overview of the role of worker-trainers
in NIEHS-supported training programs and discusses some of the most important
issues they face - including the role of professionals in such programs and
how worker-trainer programs ensure the technical accuracy and educational
excellence of their training classes.  The workshop report is available at
http://204.177.120.20/wetp/clear/resource/workertrainerprogramspaper/worker-trainer-guidelines-web.htm.

o  Training partnerships and building effective consortia - The National
Institute of Environmental Health Sciences (NIEHS) workshop on "Successful
Training Partnerships: Lessons Learned" brought representatives of industry,
small business entrepreneurs, labor, academia, and government together to
share the diverse nature of their partnerships and the details of how to make
them work. Creative arrangements and traditional partnerships were both
revealed, and there were lessons to be learned from all partnerships
discussed. Defining the elements which are integral to forming successful
training partnerships is a critical component of building an effective
training program.  As with many governmental and business collaborations,
enlightened organizational self-interest is a critical feature for all
partners. Only with a clear understanding of organizational goals and
strengths in a partnership and clear mechanisms for defining the nature of
collaboration can there be a win-win result for all parties, including the
trainees.  One common theme throughout the workshop was that partnerships are
often difficult to start, are hard to nurture and grow, and are likely to have
some rough stretches, even in the best of circumstances. Trust, honesty, and a
commitment to cooperation seem to be the glue that holds partnerships
together. Another useful ingredient for a successful, long-term partnership is
continuing support from the "people at the top" or upper management. Further
information on NIEHS training evaluation efforts is available from the
workshop report: "Successful Training Partnerships: Lessons Learned"  This
document is available on the web at
http://204.177.120.20/wetp/clear/resource/partnerships/partnerships_report.htm

o  Integration of worker health and safety training and job skills training þ
Under the leadership of the Minority Worker Training Program, NIEHS has
explored avenues for more effective linking of health and safety training with
job skills training.  A recent technical workshop, the Environmental Job
Training Summit, has explored the opportunities for promoting these linkages.
This Summit followed up the Environmental Job Training for Inner City Youth
Technical Workshop held on January 5-6, 1995, at Cuyahoga Community College in
Cleveland, Ohio explored opportunities, successes, and barriers that have
occurred during the past ten years of the Superfund Worker Training Program,
as well as the unique challenges that have been faced during the past two
years of the Minority Worker Training Program (MWTP).  The model of creating
smoother connections in the environmental cleanup industry between training
and jobs is a focal point of the success of the MWTP. Some of the strategies
of this model are: creating and sustaining collaborative dialogue among
various training organizations, exchanging ideas about training of special
populations, establishing frameworks for strengthening other job training
program by adding environmental training, and providing additional
opportunities for growth for all worker training programs by partnering with
community-based organizations. This document is available on the web at
http://204.177.120.20/wetp/clear/resource/minimum.htm.

o  Community involvement and outreach initiative þ This component is a new
outreach initiative to provide entry of a community contribution about worker
training activities concerning contaminated sites and hazardous work
environments.  The primary objective of this component is to establish methods
for linking members of a community, who are directly affected by adverse
environmental conditions, with training organizations. The development of
community-based strategies that will lead to pilots to address worker-training
needs of the community is a fundamental part of this initiative. The program
is designed to assist the development of new modes of communication through
training that will ultimately lead to identifying community and worker
concerns that can develop into collaborative partnerships.  Some of these
concerns may deal with general awareness level training, community right to
know, and emergency response training.  Additionally, there should be a
concentrated effort to identify possible exposures to community workers and
residents, promote community strategies for prevention and intervention
activities related to work injuries, and assist to facilitate other important
sustainable approaches to job training that ensure worker health and safety is
a top priority.

The above examples of training initiatives are only illustrative of the types
of innovative training efforts that may be appropriate to the WETP and are not
meant to be all-inclusive or restrictive.  Nonetheless, it is important that
investigators submitting an application under this RFA propose
multidisciplinary approaches that are integrated and designed to produce
results in the hazardous waste worker training area.

SPECIAL REQUIREMENTS

Terms and Conditions of Award

NIEHS will provide appropriate assistance, advice and guidance described
below.  The role of the NIEHS Program Administrator will be to facilitate, not
to direct, the development of a high quality national worker training
resource. These special Terms of Award are in addition to and not in lieu of
otherwise applicable OMB administrative guidelines, HHS Grant Administration
Regulations at 45 CFR Parts 74 and 92, and other HHS, PHS, and NIH Grant
Administration policy statements

The administrative and funding instrument used for this program is a
cooperative agreement U45, an "assistance" mechanism (rather than an
"acquisition" mechanism) in which substantial NIH scientific and/or
programmatic involvement with the awardee is anticipated during performance of
the activity. Under the cooperative agreement, the NIH purpose is to support
and/or stimulate the recipient"s activity by involvement in and otherwise
working jointly with the award recipient in a partner role, but it is not to
assume direction, prime responsibility, or a dominant role in the activity. 
Consistent with this concept, the dominant role and prime responsibility for
the activity resides with the awardee(s) for the project as a whole, although
specific tasks and activities in carrying out the studies will be shared among
the awardees and the NIEHS Program Administrator.

1.  Awardee Rights and Responsibilities

Awardees have primary authorities and responsibilities to define objectives
and approaches, and to plan, conduct, analyze, and publish results,
interpretations, and conclusions of their studies and training activities. It
is the responsibility of each awardee to develop the details of the training
plan, which will be required to describe the technical approaches, target
population access and recruitment, curricula modification, training
methodology, and program evaluation procedures.

o  Awardees under this program will be required to meet at least twice
annually to review progress, share information, and to coordinate training
activities.  Since awards may be made to institutions that are unfamiliar with
NIH grant assistance procedures, business officials will be expected to meet
at least annually to review NIH grant management policies.

o  Awardees under this program shall develop protocols and procedures for the
involvement and participation of technical staff in the Headquarters
Environmental Management (DOE/EM) Program and site contractors in the nuclear
weapons complex in the design, delivery and evaluation of worker training
activities.

o  Awardees under this program shall submit training materials developed by
the awardees for review by the NIEHS Program Administrator for consistency,
appropriateness and technical accuracy before the initiation of worker safety
and health training activities. Final copies of all materials developed with
support from NIEHS will be transmitted by the awardees to the National
Clearinghouse for Worker Safety and Health Training for Hazardous Materials,
Waste Operations and Emergency Response and made available to the general
public, subject to any specific legal caveats on use or copyright protection.

o  Each awardee will submit an annual progress report to the NIEHS Program
Administrator which describes the number, location and nature of all training
activities and the characteristics of the trainees reached during a particular
fiscal year.

o  Results and findings from training program evaluations will be summarized
by each awardee and submitted to the NIEHS Program Administrator on an annual
basis.  Program evaluation reports shall quantitatively describe the current
status of instructor effectiveness, trainee retention of knowledge and
skills, and positive impacts of training activities on work practices,
workplace safety and health conditions, and overall worker protection from on
the job hazards.

o  Each awardee shall participate annually in two technical workshops, which
will be sponsored and planned by the NIEHS Program Administrator.  The
technical workshops will present relevant and topical information to assure
the continued high quality of worker safety and health training activities
carried out by the awardees and encourage the exchange of significant
information regarding effective raining techniques and approaches.

o  Each awardee will be required to convene a Board of Advisors representing
user populations, labor, industry, governmental agencies, academic
institutions or professional associations with interest and expertise in
worker health and safety training related to hazardous materials and waste
operations and emergency response.  The Board of Advisors must meet annually
to evaluate training activities and provide advice to the program director.

o  Each awardee is required to have one individual assigned the responsibility
for information technology transfer and dissemination as the point of contact
for the NIEHS Program Administrator. This person would ensure the effective
communication and transfer of important training and administrative
information to NIEHS and other appropriate audiences, including trainee
tracking activities, computation and submittal of training data, coordination
of special meetings/conferences, and other training activities conducted by
the program.

o  Each awardee will retain custody of and primary rights to the data and the
curricula materials developed under these awards, subject to appropriate
Government rights of access consistent with current HHS, PHS and NIH policies.

2.  NIEHS Staff responsibilities

Specifically, the substantial programmatic involvement by the NIEHS Program
Administrator will include the following activities:

o  The NIEHS Program Administrator will coordinate activities of mutual
interest and benefit to awardees and the Institute.  The primary objective of
the Worker Education and Training Program will be to stimulate collaborative
work between NIEHS and its awardees, and DOE and its site contractors, in the
creation of model worker safety and health training programs.  Substantial
programmatic involvement by the NIEHS Program Administrator will assure that
there is not duplication of efforts or overlap in worker safety and health
training delivery and program development by the awardees.

o  In order to provide consistent use and delivery of existing curricula for
high quality worker safety and health training, the NIEHS Program
Administrator will ensure that there will be close coordination between
awardees, DOE staff and site contractors, other state and federal governmental
agencies, and other training providers.  Such program coordination between
NIEHS and the awardees will make maximum use of worker safety and health
training materials and curricula that have already been developed, evaluated,
and used

o  To facilitate exchange and coordination between awardees and the Institute,
the NIEHS Program Administrator will convene and sponsor a two day working
meeting for the program director who represents each awardee.  In addition, it
is anticipated that awardees under this program will meet at least twice
annually to review progress, share information, discuss technical issues and
to coordinate training activities.

o  The NIEHS will provide ongoing technical assistance to the awardees through
arrangement of technical workshops related to the substantive technical issues
that affect the program. Technical workshops will bring together program
directors from each awardee with the relevant technical experts from a number
of scientific fields involved in hazardous waste, occupational health,
environmental health sciences, and adult education.  Examination of training
technologies and technical issues which are specific to the program will be
developed and coordinated through technical workshops, which will be held at
least twice per fiscal year.

o  To assure that training programs which are developed with assistance from
NIEHS will comply with all applicable federal safety and health regulations,
the NIEHS Program Administrator will assist the awardees through continual
involvement with other federal regulatory agencies.  Operational monitoring by
the NIEHS Program Administrator will ensure that awardees are in compliance
with general federal statutory requirements regulating worker safety and
health training activities.

o  The NIEHS Program Administrator will coordinate overall program evaluations
to show the impact of the training on improving work practices, reducing work
related injury and illness and to document the increased understanding of
relevant environmental health sciences by workers involved in environmental
cleanups, hazardous waste management and emergency response to chemical
releases.  While each awardee must have its own evaluation program, the NIEHS
Program Administrator will strive to assess the overall effectiveness of the
training programs supported under the cooperative agreements in terms of the
nation"s needs and in relation to the target populations identified by
Congress in SARA Section 126 and Section 3131 of the National Defense
Authorization Act of 1992-93.

o  NIEHS maintains a National Clearinghouse for Worker Safety and Health
Training for Hazardous Materials, Waste Operations and Emergency Response to
assist awardees by providing information and technical support services to the
program directors of NIEHS funded hazardous materials, waste operations, and
emergency response worker training programs.  The Clearinghouse will also
function as a national resource for the dissemination to the general public of
program related information and curricula materials which have been developed
by the awardees.

3.  Arbitration

o  When mutually acceptable agreement regarding program activities cannot be
reached between the awardee and the NIEHS Program Administrator, an
arbitration panel composed of one member nominated by the awardee recipient
group, one NIEHS nominee, and a third member with appropriate expertise chosen
by the other two members will be convened.  The ad hoc panel will receive
written explanations of the disagreement from all parties, review relevant
documents, interview representatives of the parties and render an opinion
regarding resolution of the dispute.  These special arbitration procedures in
no way effect the awardee"s right to appeal an adverse action in accordance
with PHS regulations at 42 CFR Part 50, Subpart D, and HHS regulations at 45
CFR Part 16.

INFORMATIONAL MEETING

A briefing for applicants will be held at NIEHS in RTP, NC on Friday,
September 17,1999 from 1-5 PM in Building 101, Conference Room B.  A summary
of responses from the briefing, all relevant information for potential
applicants and Special Instructions will be available upon request from NIEHS
(wetp@niehs.nih.gov) and will be posted on the NIEHS Worker Education and
Training Program (WETP) home page at:  http://www.niehs.nih.gov/wetp.

LETTER OF INTENT

Prospective applicants are asked to submit, by September 10, 1999, a brief
letter of intent that includes a descriptive title of the proposed research
project, the name, address, and telephone number of the Principal
Investigator, the identities of other key personnel and participating
institutions, and the number and title of the RFA in response to which the
application may be submitted.  Although a letter of intent is not required, is
not binding, and does not enter into the review of subsequent application, the
information that it contains allows NIEHS staff to estimate the potential
review work load and to avoid conflict of interest in the review.

The letter of intent is to be sent to:

David Brown, M.P.H.
Division of Extramural Research and Training
National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences
111 Alexander Drive, MD EC-24
P.O. Box 12233
Research Triangle Park, NC  27709
Telephone:  (919) 541-4964
FAX:  (919) 541-2503
Email:  brown4@niehs.nih.gov

APPLICATION PROCEDURES

Applications are to be submitted on the grant application for PHS 398 (rev.
4/98).  Application kits are available at most institutional offices of
sponsored research and may be obtained from the Division of Extramural
Outreach and Information Resources, National Institutes of Health, 6701
Rockledge Drive, MSC 7910, Bethesda, MD  20892-7910, telephone 301/435-0714,
email:  GrantsInfo@nih.gov.

The RFA Label and line 2 of the application should both indicate the RFA
number.  The RFA label must be affixed to the bottom of the face page. 
Failure to use this label could result in delayed processing of the
application such that it may not reach the review committee in time for
review.

The RFA label is available at: 
http://www.nih.gov/grants/funding/phs398/label-bk.pdf 
has been modified to allow for this change.  Please note this is in pdf
format.

Submit a signed typewritten original of the application including the
checklist, and two signed photocopies in one package to:

CENTER FOR SCIENTIFIC REVIEW
NATIONAL INSTITUTES OF HEALTH
6701 ROCKLEDGE DRIVE, ROOM 1040, MSC 7710
BETHESDA, MD  20892-7710
BETHESDA, MD  20817 (for express/courier service)

No appendices should be submitted to the Center for Scientific Review.  At the
time of the submission, three additional signed copies and five copies of the
appendices must be sent to:

David P. Brown, M.P.H.
Scientific Review Branch
Division of Extramural Research and Training
National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences
P.O. Box 12233
79 T.W. Alexander Drive, 4401 Bldg.
Mail Drop EC-24
Research Triangle Park, NC  27709
Telephone:  (919) 541-4964
FAX:  (919) 541-2503

Applications must be received at CSR by November 19, 1999 to ensure review. If
an application is received after that date, it will be returned to the
applicant without review.  Copies sent to the NIH Center for Scientific Review
should clearly indicate that three copies have been sent directly to NIEHS. 
This is a modification of current instructions for submission of Form PHS 398.

REVIEW CONSIDERATIONS

Upon receipt, applications and supporting material will be examined for
completeness by the Center for Scientific Review, NIH.  In addition, the
Division of Extramural Research and Training (DERT), NIEHS will do an
administrative review for completeness and responsiveness to the RFA,
incomplete applications will be returned to the applicant without further
consideration.  The specific points of consideration are: (1) the
appropriateness of the training plan proposed in regard to the mission of the
NIEHS and the WETP, and (2) the general completeness of the application
including responsiveness to programmatic requirements and the organizational
adequacy for review (this includes scientific, technical, and budgetary
considerations.)

Applications that are complete and responsive to this RFA will be evaluated
for scientific and technical merit by an appropriate peer review group
convened by NIEHS in accordance with the review criteria stated below.  The
committee will be composed primarily of non-government members with expertise
in occupational health and safety training related to hazardous materials,
waste operations and emergency response.

Since these applications are complex, it is essential that applications be
thoroughly prepared and that they be well organized in accordance with the
guidelines.  As part of the initial merit review, all applications will
receive a written critique and undergo a review in which only those
applications deemed to have the highest scientific merit will be discussed,
assigned a priority score based on the technical merit of the overall
application, and receive a second level review by the National Advisory
Environmental Health Sciences (NAEHS) Council.

It is important to note peer review group members will examine proposed
budgets closely. The peer review group may recommend adjustments, as judged
appropriate, in the requested budgets and periods of support for the
components of WETP applications that are deemed to have significant and
substantial merit.

Review Criteria

The following factors shall be considered for review of all applications:

1) Evaluation of the proposed methods and techniques to be used for
identifying, describing, and accessing target specific worker populations for
worker health and safety training and anticipated impact of the proposed
program.
o  Applicants must identify, describe, and fully document access to specific
DOE-related target worker populations, whether organized or not, that are
engaged in hazardous materials and waste operations and transportation and
related emergency response.
o  This information must include size of the target population, worker
profiles, trades and job categories to be trained, geographic locations of
workers and degree of worker health and safety training already received.
o  Applicants must demonstrate the ability to establish training relationships
with site contractors employing workers who are or may be engaged in hazardous
substance response or emergency response at DOE nuclear weapons facilities.

2) Evaluation of the organization"s performance and effectiveness in planning,
implementing and operating appropriate worker health and safety training and
education programs.
o  Evidence should include demonstrated past success in development and
implementation of worker health and safety training and education programs and
application of appropriate adult education techniques.
o  Evidence should include documentation of the program"s achievement of
compliance with the requirements of the NIEHS Minimum Criteria for Worker
Health and Safety Training for Hazardous Waste Operations and Emergency
Response.

3) Evaluation of the adequacy of the detailed program plan for worker health
and safety training in adapting existing curricula, training of instructors,
distributing course materials, direct worker training, and conducting program
evaluations.
o  The plan must include information on the number of students to be trained,
number of training classes to be held, duration of training, appropriate adult
education techniques to be employed, and course content.
o  The plan shall include protocols and procedures for the involvement and
participation of DOE technical staff and site contractors in the nuclear
weapons complex in the development design, implementation of worker training
activities.
o  Plans for hands on demonstration and instruction must be provided as well
as plans for monitoring student"s progress and performance.
o  The plan shall include involvement of appropriate health and safety
disciplines and avenues for consultation with DOE and site contractor health
and safety staff and training managers.
o  The plan must describe a system for tracking trainee employment in DOE
hazmat-related jobs.
o  The plan must identify and describe the curriculum to be used.

4) Evaluation of the evidence of appropriate combinations of classroom
instruction and hands on demonstration and instruction that simulates site
activities and conditions.
o  It is intended that offsite instruction funded by the NIEHS assistance
program will be supplemented with onsite training under the direct supervision
of trained, experienced personnel at the time of initial job assignment.
o  Appropriate adult education techniques must be applied and the use of
advanced training technologies as a program delivery component is encouraged.
o  Both initial and appropriate refresher training will be covered.

5) Ability to immediately initiate direct worker health and safety training,
program evaluation, and related support activities.

6) Evidence of experienced and technically qualified key personnel.
o  The Principal Investigator must demonstrate the capacity for providing
leadership and assuring productivity of appropriate worker health and safety
training and education programs and for overall management of the training
programs including quality assurance and program evaluation.
o  Evidence of the technical, managerial and professional expertise of present
or proposed key personnel. Such expertise will be evaluated by resumes,
minimum position qualifications and position descriptions.
o  Evidence that the administrative official has experience or knowledge in
the management of federal programs and will participate in program decisions
should be contained in the application.
o  Sufficient program staff with demonstrated training experience using
appropriate adult education techniques to assure effective direct training,
and quality assurance.
o  Availability and continuing access to appropriate technical expertise
including but not limited to adult education techniques for workers,
toxicology and industrial hygiene must be available.

7) Demonstration of an applicant"s organizational structure that provides
adequate knowledge and oversight of resources and administrative management of
the program.  These should include:
o  Details on how the proposed program fits into existing organizational
structure of the non-profit, if applicable.
o  Organization chart of the proposed program.
o  Details of an external board of advisors that represents user populations,
labor, industry, governmental agencies, academic institutions or professional
associations with interest and expertise in worker health and safety training
related to hazardous materials and waste operations and emergency response.
o  Plans, membership (proposed or invited) and minutes (if applicable) that
show that the external board will meet regularly to evaluate training
activities and will develop formal procedures to provide advice to the Program
Director.
o  Demonstration of the ability to maintain satisfactory management and
accounting systems to control funds and expenditures
o  Flow chart or description of financial management and fiscal accountability
policies and procedures.

8) Availability of appropriate facilities and equipment to support the
described worker health and safety training and education activities including
hands on instruction, classroom delivery, and distance learning capabilities.
o  Operation of training facilities must assure the protection of prospective
trainees during program delivery.
o  Appropriate policies and procedures for assuring fitness for training and
medical clearance, assuring the provision of first aid and emergency medical
services and the implementation of high quality site safety and health plans
must be included.

9) Evidence of methods proposed for evaluating appropriateness, quality,
impact and effectiveness of worker health and safety training.
o  This should include student feedback mechanisms, trainer involvement in
evaluation, a protocol for tracking trainees, a method to quantify training
outcomes and results, and a review of course critiques and Board of Advisors
evaluations and other appropriate evaluations and quality assurance
procedures.

10) Evaluation of the feasibility of plans for independently continuing the
program.
o  Plans for generation of program income, if applicable, or plans to leverage
other relevant resources.
o  Plans for institutionalization of the program.
o  Other applicable procedures for assuring the long-term viability of the
program.

11) Evaluation of plans for reaching underserved worker populations especially
those disadvantaged in education, culture, or language or limited in literacy
and access to training.
o  Evidence of mechanisms to assure the inclusion of institutions and
organizations which have historical involvement and expertise in responding to
environmental justice issues.
o  A community outreach and involvement component which can augment the
delivery of high quality training in order to promote toxic use reduction,
emergency preparedness in the community, and community awareness of chemical
process safety and pollution prevention.

12) Assessing the reasonableness of the requested operating budget in relation
to proposed program activities for worker health and safety training.

13) Adequacy of prior awardee"s progress in competitive renewals.
o  Demonstration of meeting established terms and conditions of prior awards.
o  Demonstration of attainment of program goals and objectives of prior
awards.
o  Demonstration of adequate procedures to assure the timely disbursement of
awarded funds.

14) Evidence of inclusion of worker training initiatives and innovations.
o  The plan must integrate an appropriate mix of new program initiatives as
listed in solicitation that meets the needs of each applicant"s target
populations.

Schedule

Letter of Intent Receipt Date:  September 10, 1999
Briefing for Applicants         September 17, 1999
Application Receipt Date:       November 19, 1999
Secondary review by NAEHSC:     May 16, 2000
Initiation of New Awards:       September 1, 2000

AWARD CRITERIA

Because the funding level of this program may vary from that appropriated,
actual award levels for approved and funded applications will be based on
program balance, coverage of target populations and the availability of funds,
in addition to the technical merit considerations of the review process.

INQUIRIES

NIEHS welcomes the opportunity to clarify any issues or questions from
potential applicants concerning this RFA.

Direct inquiries regarding programmatic issues to:

Joseph Hughes, Director
Worker Education & Training Program
National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences
79 TW Alexander Drive, MD EC-25
Research Triangle Park, NC  27709-2233
Telephone: (919)-541-0217
Fax: (919) 541-0462
Email:  hughes3@niehs.nih.gov

Sharon Beard, Industrial Hygienist
Worker Education & Training Program
National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences
79 TW Alexander Drive, MD EC-25
Research Triangle Park, NC  27709-2233
Telephone: (919)-541-1863
Fax: (919) 541-0462
Email: beard1@niehs.nih.gov

Direct inquiries regarding fiscal matters to:

Dorothy Duke
Grants Management Branch
National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences
79 T.W. Alexander Drive, MD EC-01
Research Triangle Park, NC  27709-2233
Telephone:  (919) 541-2749
Fax: (919) 541-2860
Email: duke3@niehs.nih.gov

AUTHORITY AND REGULATIONS

This program is described in the Catalog of Federal Domestic Assistance, No.
93.142, Superfund Worker Training Grants.  Awards will be made under the
authority of the Public Health Service Act, Title III, Section 301 (Public Law
78 410, as amended, 42 USC 241) and Section 126(g) of the Superfund Amendments
and Reauthorization Act of 1986 and administered under PHS grant policies and
Federal Regulations 42 CFR Part 52 and 45 CFR Part 74.  This program is not
subject to the intergovernmental review requirements of Executive Order 12372
or Health Systems Agency review.  The program is administered according to 42
CFR 45 Part 74 and Part 92, DHHS Administration of Grants, 42 CFR Part 65,
Special Regulations for National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences
Hazardous Waste Worker Training, the PHS Grants Administration Manual, and PHS
Grants Policy Statement.

The PHS strongly encourages all grant and contract recipients to provide a
smoke-free workplace and promote the non-use of all tobacco products.  In
addition, Public Law 103-227, the Pro-Children Act of 1994, prohibits smoking
in certain facilities (or in some cases, any portion of a facility) in which
regular or routine education, library, day care, health care or early
childhood development services are provided to children.  This is consistent
with the PHS mission to protect and advance the physical and mental health of
the American people.



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NIH Funding Opportunities and Notices


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