Department of Energy Voluntary Protection Program (DOE VPP)
The Department of Energy Voluntary Protection Program (DOE-VPP) promotes safety
and health excellence through cooperative efforts among labor, management, and
government at the Department of Energy (DOE) contractor sites. DOE has also formed
partnerships with other Federal agencies and the private sector for both advancing
and sharing its Voluntary Protection Program (VPP) experiences and preparing for
program challenges in the next century. The safety and health of contractor and federal
employees are a high priority for the Department.
The Department initiated its VPP in January 1994 to promote improved safety and
health performance through public recognition of outstanding programs. DOE-VPP also
includes coverage of radiation protection/nuclear safety and emergency management
because of the type and complexity of DOE facilities. Similar to the Occupational
Safety and Health Administration's (OSHA's) VPP program, DOE-VPP provides several
proven benefits to participating sites, including improved labor/management relations,
reduced workplace injuries and illnesses, increased employee involvement, improved
morale, reduced absenteeism, and public recognition.
Categories of Achievement
The DOE-VPP has three (3) levels of recognition; STAR, MERIT, and DEMONSTRATION.
Contractors whose programs meet the requirements for outstanding safety and health
programs receive STAR recognition, the highest achievement level. Contractors with
highly effective programs, who commit themselves to attain STAR status within a
five-year period, receive MERIT recognition. A site can retain MERIT recognition
for a maximum of five years. The DEMONSTRATION program is expected to be used rarely.
This program allows DOE to recognize existing achievements in unusual situations
about which more information is needed before approval requirements for the STAR
program can be determined. Once approved, STAR sites are reevaluated every three
years, while MERIT and DEMONSTRATION sites are evaluated annually.
Partnering with the Private Sector
The VPP Outreach Program partners
DOE contractors working toward DOE-VPP recognition with private-sector firms that
have achieved OSHA STAR status, so that they may learn firsthand what it takes to
become a STAR site. This program is operated jointly by the Department and the
Voluntary Protection Program Participants' Association (VPPPA).
The VPPPA, a nonprofit organization, is a
leader in safety, health, and environmental excellence through cooperative efforts
among labor, management, and government. As part of its efforts to share the benefits
of cooperative programs, the VPPPA works closely with the OSHA, OSHA state plan states,
DOE, and the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) in the development and implementation
of cooperative programs within the agencies. VPPPA also provides expertise to these
groups in the form of comments and stakeholder feedback on agency rulemakings and
policies. The Association also provides comments and testimony to members of Congress
regarding legislative bills on health and safety issues. The VPPPA, a nonprofit,
501(c)(3) charitable organization, is a leader in safety, health, and environmental
excellence through cooperative efforts among employees, management, and government.
VPPPA members include more than 450 companies and work sites that are involved in
OSHA's VPP or the DOE's VPP, and government agencies that are developing or
implementing cooperative recognition programs.
For further information on DOE-VPP, please contact Brad Davy.
This page was last updated on January 15, 2013