Washington — Last year, from January 22, 2001 to June 11, 2001, the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) conducted a comprehensive inspection of the U.S. Mint manufacturing facility in Philadelphia. The results received in an OSHA notice on February 27, 2002 (OSHA–2H), cited the Mint facility in Philadelphia for noncompliance on 139 specific items. The Philadelphia facility has either permanently addressed or taken effective interim measures for 136 of those items.
The Mint constantly strives to be a model government agency that matches world–class business practices in every facet of its work, most importantly, safety. The Mint is committed to ensuring a safe and healthy workplace for its employees, and believes that people should not work in conditions in which they could get hurt. To that end, the Director of the Mint has directed that a thorough review of the entire Philadelphia facility begin immediately.
“The safety and well being of every employee across the Mint is of paramount importance,” said U.S. Mint Director Henrietta Holsman Fore. “The majority of these issues have already been addressed. Nevertheless, I have directed a top to bottom review of the entire Philadelphia facility. The Mint will continue to work collaboratively with OSHA to immediately address any and all outstanding issues.”
Therefore, as of March 4, 2002, and until any safety concerns are addressed in a satisfactory manner, the Philadelphia facility will suspend production. All employees of the Philadelphia facility will continue to report to work and give their full time and attention to safety, retraining on all safety programs and procedures, and improving the housekeeping and cleanliness standards of the facility. We remain committed to working together to not only address every concern, but to create a showcase for best practices in the public sector.
Throughout this process, the Mint will continue to work closely with OSHA to immediately address any and all outstanding issues. The Mint will subsequently invite OSHA to return to the plant to review and verify all actions taken to ensure a safe and healthy workplace.
The Mint will continue to meet all orders for coinage without interruption, given that coin demand is at a low level and inventories of coin are at sufficient levels in the Federal Reserve System.
“The safety of our employees and the workplace is a priority and we evaluate our programs, performance, and training on an ongoing basis. We are taking this opportunity to thoroughly review our programs Mint–wide including all of our manufacturing plants,” said Brad Cooper, Associate Director of Manufacturing.