Each academic year, one or more university-wide initiatives for improving University health and safety programs are undertaken. This is called the Chancellor’s Charge. In 2015, the focus was on improving channels for safety communications. The details of the charge were as follows:

Each laboratory is asked to supply an additional contact for communication with Environmental Health and Safety. This will aid in safety related communications, especially those which are time sensitive such as adverse incidents and new hazards which may affect multiple labs, new practices based on new regulations, etc. Most of these communications will continue to be sent to the PI as well, but the use of a secondary contact will provide necessary backup coverage. 

Additional requirements come from the Nuclear Regulatory Commission for those that have radioactive materials in their labs.


Each Safety Plan owner designates an SSC as they see fit. EHS preference is that the SSC act as backup coverage for the PI for safety communications and emergencies. EHS provides free training to SSCs so that they may better understand the safety requirements of a lab. EHS understands that not all labs have personnel with a deep understanding of the lab; however, emergency communications can be as simple as knowing the lab location, whether the PI is on campus, or whether nearby labs may be affected by an incident.


EHS recommends that preference in SSC selection go to the person who is the most knowledgeable about the lab space. See below for SSC selection guidance:

 Suitability Example Example Responsibilities
Best Lab Manager


Other PI in a shared space

Knowledge of processes and hazardous materials

SSC training

Better Lab worker

Safety Representative

General knowledge of lab activities

Disseminate EHS notifications

Acceptable Building Liaison

Department Chairs/ Deans

Colleagues unfamiliar with space

Information on PI whereabouts

Knows lab location in building

Knows nearby labs affected by incident

Please communicate this information to a potential SSC before listing them on the Safety Plan

Contact with any comments and/or questions