AUBURN HILLS, MI — The Chrysler Group has been awarded the American College of Occupational and Environmental Medicine's (ACOEM) Corporate Health Achievement Award (CHAA) for 2005. The award was presented in Washington, D.C. and was given in recognition of Chrysler Group's innovative health and safety programs and dramatically improved rates of work-related injuries in recent years. This is the third year in a row that the Chrysler Group has received major national recognition for its safety efforts. In 2003 the company was named one of the nation's safest companies by Occupational Hazards. Last year the company received the National Safety Council's Green Cross Award. No other automotive company has received any of these awards. The CHAA recognizes quality occupational and environmental health programs, identifies model programs and outstanding practices with measurable results and encourages organizational self-assessment and continuous improvement. After being selected as a finalist, the company had to demonstrate measurable health and safety improvements and was subject to a two-day on-site review of its operations. Only organizations with exemplary health and safety practices are considered for the award each year, and in most years only a handful are recognized. This year ACOEM named two recipients: the Chrysler Group and Quad Graphics, one of the world's largest printing companies. Recipients of the annual award are judged on the strength of their health and safety programs for individual employees, their programs to protect the environment, their leadership and management, and for their efforts to create an overall work culture that stresses healthy lifestyles and safety consciousness. In announcing the award, ACOEM singled out several Chrysler Group successes. Among them are:

  • B.E.S.T.: Chrysler Group's Bringing Excellence to Safety Teams process, implemented in 1999, empowers employees to become involved in a company-wide safety improvement process. The program is hailed as a model of cooperation between management and a trade union (United Auto Workers) and it has helped the Chrysler Group reduce its rate of injuries and lost workdays by more than 75 percent, while saving millions of dollars in workers compensation expense.
  • Ergonomic injury rate: Chrysler Group started a comprehensive effort to improve ergonomic engineering and increase employee awareness of ergonomics in 1999, resulting in a dramatic drop in ergonomic injuries. By 2004, the ergonomic injury trend had been reduced by more than 80 percent.
  • Standardized care: Chrysler Group took measures to standardize its medical care for employees starting in 1999, with an in-house medical and pharmaceutical formulary, electronic ordering system for supplies and other improvements. Its medically-related services are now significantly more efficient, saving the company an estimated $500,000 annually in medical supplies expenditures alone.