EVS Green Careers has created opportunities for workers to upgrade their skills and apply new knowledge on the job to positively impact the employer’s triple bottom line (people, planet and costs/profits). One such opportunity is a new, green “step-up” position that will enable employers to continue to reap the benefits of greening EVS work while moving workers along a career path in environmental services. This new job is taking shape across the country as labor and management negotiate the specifics on a local level.
Here, we would like to highlight the progress in the Maryland/DC region where the union and two employers, working with the 1199 Training and Upgrading Fund MD/DC, have finalized “Green Lead” and “Green Team Lead” positions in their facilities.
While each employer has some variation in the job description and expectations, both new EVS positions include the following job duties:
- Assists with the coordination and conduct of training and education programs,
- Assists EVS management with EVS-led green initiatives,
- Assists with project plan development, timeline tracking, and development of materials and tools for EVS workers to use, such as monitoring worksheets.
- Participates on committees related to the hospital’s green efforts,
- Assists with data collection, monitoring and tracking through various methods, including data needed to support cost savings projections for greening programs.
- Helps with departmental and hospital-wide communications on environmental sustainability,
- Supports process improvement and quality outcomes.
In both cases, the position will split time between EVS cleaning duties and the Green Lead responsibilities. Efforts to finalize this position are also underway at Dimensions Health Systems.
Anthony Dixon, Director of Environmental Services at Maryland General Hospital, is “excited about the opportunity the ‘green lead’ position will provide for someone on our staff,” and believes this is “an excellent chance to make a difference here at MGH and in the life and career path of those looking to move to the next level. “ He stated, “Sustainability is here to stay and hopefully our forthcoming ‘green lead’ will blaze new trails as a champion of green training, education and innovation. “
Labor and management are also working together to lay a foundation for success for this new position. Importantly, the employers and the union are addressing scheduling to prevent the worker from being pulled into “floor-work” during hours specifically designated for their “green lead” work. In addition, a team of employer and union leaders are coming together to support the positions and will follow-up in three-month intervals.
One requirement for entry into the new positions created at Maryland General Hospital and United Medical Center is successful completion of the college certificate course “Sustainability in Healthcare”. Workers and supervisors from these employers are now enrolled in this course and were pre-screened for their suitability for this work. Workers who successfully complete the course will become eligible to apply for the new positions.
In addition to the course, both employers are completing their core incumbent worker training throughout the facilities and are engaging in specific project work supported by the expertise of Practice Green Health. This baseline of worker “green” knowledge and the ongoing greening efforts supported by Practice Green Health will also contribute to creating a successful environment in which to launch this new position. H-CAP, Practice Green Health and SEIU nationally will continue our partnership in support of these positions in the months to come.
This program is sponsored in part by the U.S. Department of Labor, Employment and Training Administration.
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