The Pennsylvania Governor''s Award for Safety Excellence was present to the Brethren Village and its 500 employees for its workplace safety program which has helped to cut compensation costs.
Brethren Village began operations in 1897 in a rural Lancaster farmhouse, and now provides a full continuum of health-care services, including assisted living, nursing home care and a licensed home health agency.
The village includes a coffee shop, convenience store, bank, pharmacy, library and other facilities.
"The safety effort here at the Brethren Village has cut annual workers'' compensation costs by more than $200,000 in the past four years," said Michael Acker, executive deputy secretary for the Department of Labor and Industry. "This is a true example of workers and management cooperating to create and maintain a safe work environment."
At the Brethren Village, the safety committee holds bi-monthly meetings, issues monthly safety newsletters, and provides annual training with emphasis on correct lifting techniques.
"The return-to-work program here allows injured workers to stay involved in their vocation while rehabilitating," said Acker. "This program has resulted in numerous employees being able to return to their job more quickly and stay current with their occupational skills."
The Governor''s Award for Safety Excellence is a key element of Gov. Tom Ridge''s PENNSAFE, Pennsylvania Safety First, workplace-safety initiative. This effort recognizes successful workplace-safety programs through the Governor''s award.
by Virginia Sutcliffe