UMSC January Minutes

January 2023 Meeting Minutes

The monthly meeting of the Union-Management Safety Committee was conducted on January 10th, 2023 by the Environmental Health and Safety department with the following individuals in attendance:

Kathi Cain-Babbitt A AFSCME
Kelly Duncan A Landscape Services
Devin Johnson A Maintenance Services
Darrell Junkins A Landscape Services
Pat Lem A Maintenance Services
Dennis Moore A Maintenance Services
Dion VanAtter A Maintenance Services
Mark Weiss A Environmental Health and Safety
Laura Weber VA Legal Affairs, Risk, and Compliance
Jake Woods A Environmental Health and Safety

In-Person Attendance: (A)
Virtual Attendance: (VA)


Jake Woods previously provided an update to the request for fentanyl awareness, active shooter / intruder response, and other hazardous materials such as needles/unknown chemicals/etc. training for Landscape Services personnel. WMU-DPS and Landscape Services management developed a training plan with relevant subject matter. Training availability was confirmed with DPS for active shooter / intruder response and EHS for the other topics. Jake will inquire scheduling and provide a follow up.

Dion VanAtter provided an update to the safety concern involving damaged concrete walkways and stairs at Waldo Stadium. Kathi Cain-Babbitt had observed a Facebook post / group chat during a football game where patrons discussed damaged materials being present in seating sections D/E. She subsequently forwarded along the concerns to the FM Service Center who issued work order LA-100111. Dion stated that Project #267644, started on December 20th, encompasses the work order along with other flatwork repairs at the facility.

Pat Lem provided an update to the issue involving a damaged underground vault located in parking lot #37; near entry of the Kohrman Hall chiller/mechanical room. The upper section of the vault is damaged and personnel were concerned that a vehicle could fall into it. The area in question was protected by a traffic safety cone by Maintenance Services personnel. A replacement, custom-made cover is being made due to OEM no longer being available. It will be recessed to minimize disturbance during snow removal efforts. Pat stated that a permanent bollard was also be pursued and will be installed by Maintenance Services.

Jake Woods provided an update, from Juanita Snell, to the public safety concern regarding a situation where a Custodial Services employee personal vehicle was broken into while parked in lot #51 (lower Sindecuse Health Center). Laura Weber previously mentioned that University insurance does not cover personal belongings whether they are located in personal or University vehicles. Jake contacted FM Engineering who informed him that one lighting pole in the affected area did have repairs completed on 11-3-22, but that all equipment was now in good operation. Data from a historical lighting survey indicated levels in lot #51 were observed to be adequate. December Committee discussions involved an inquiry for lockable lockers for Custodial Services personnel. Juanita shared that management approved procurement of three lockers through Surplus Sales.

Darrell Junkins provided an update to the concern involving hand railing that was observed to be loose along a walkway near Lawson Ice Arena. Darrell investigated and observed significant corrosion to the metal base components. He subsequently submitted FM Work Order #LW-100549 requesting repairs/replacement. The committee discussed reinforcement/repair or full removal as possible solutions. The railing provides security for pedestrians but causes some difficulty for snow plowing and does not appear to be protecting a MIOSHA regulated fall hazard.

Mark Weiss provided an update to the concern involving the spray-paint room located in the Physical Plant. Kathi Cain-Babbitt previously inquired about type of personal protective equipment required and other information related to designated spray area. Mark stated that he had recently performed an assessment of the paint room with help from Maintenance Services leadership. The airflow within the space was found to be adequate, but respirator usage would be required for oil-based paints but not latex. Jake Woods mentioned that the process for fit-testing / training is underway. Affected employees are completing a medical questionnaire that will be reviewed by Sindecuse Health Center. Jake will coordinate training and fit-testing session(s) once approval to proceed has been received from the health center.


No Updates


Kelli Duncan introduced an issue regarding damaged exterior stairs located near the North side of the Faunce Student Services Building. Kelli mentioned that some of the concrete stairs are deteriorated and currently present a trip and fall hazard. Darrell Junkins will investigate and provide a follow up.

Dennis Moore introduced a safety concern involving damaged stairs located in the South Pumphouse. Dennis stated that there is significant corrosion to the metal framing particularly to the components near the floor. Jake Woods mentioned that he had recently performed a site assessment after being made aware of the situation by Maintenance Services tradespeople; photos and information was provided to FM leadership. Devin Johnson expressed appreciation to the personnel who brought up awareness of the damaged materials and stated that R.W. LaPine had been contacted to perform a survey and/or perform necessary repairs.


Laura Weber shared that each year we have our Loss Control representative present different insurance and loss control topics to our campus community. This year we have decided to again offer the loss control presentations to the campus community via webinars on 1/26/2023. The following informational presentations are designed to educate, raise awareness, invoke discussion, and encourage all to adopt added controls if applicable. Fleet Safety – Risk Review – 8:30 a.m. to 9:30 a.m. Discussion points include vehicle safety benchmarks, 15 passenger vans, and unconventional vehicles. EHS Issues – Identified and Mitigated – 9:45 a.m. to 10:45 a.m. Discussion points include common compliance program risk (i.e. mechanical rooms, walking surfaces, transportation, art classes, chemicals and water), using a lesson learned approach, financial implications, and internal review. Great Resignation and Risk – Talent Loss Impact on Risk and Safety – 11:00 a.m. to 12:00 p.m. Discussion points include the impact of great resignation and turnover on safety, high risk positions, muscle memory and tribal knowledge, and reducing risk. To register please email: or call (269) 387-4825.

Kathi Cain-Babbitt expressed appreciation for the temporary/permanent barriers that were erected on Michigan Avenue near the intersection of Howard St. The barriers were installed as an attempt to correct unlawful and hazardous jaywalking incidents. Committee discussion revealed that pedestrian safety in the affected area has been improved.

Dennis Moore stated that he is coordinating testing of Electrician tradespeople PPE. Electrically rated PPE items are required to be tested on a periodic basis to ensure they provide rated levels of protection.

Jake Woods expressed appreciation to the Landscape Services department for their recent snow removal efforts. He was on campus during the recent blizzard due to an emergency and was taken back how well campus roads and walkways looked relative to the surrounding areas. The department’s hard work and dedication does not go unnoticed.

Jake Woods shared that the Environmental Protection Agency recognizes January as Radon Action month. This is an annual observance held in January each year highlighting that radon is the leading cause of lung cancer deaths among nonsmokers in America and claims the lives of about 21,000 Americans each year. In fact, the EPA and the U.S. Surgeon General urge all Americans to protect their health by testing their homes, schools and other buildings for radon. Further information can be found at:

The next UMSC meeting will be held on Tuesday, February 14th, 2023 in the shared conference room located on the ground floor of the E.W. Building at 10:00 a.m.; an invitation to attend via video conferencing platform (WebEx) will also be sent out with these minutes. Please send a substitute representative if you are unable to attend.

Published: 1/17/2023