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Workplace Health and Safety (WHS)

Grants to New York Nonprofits and Agencies to
Reduce Occupational Hazards for Low-Wage Workers

Agency Type:


Funding Source:

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New York State Department of Labor (NYSDOL)

Deadline Date:

12/29/17 4:00 PM EST - Applications will be accepted on an ongoing basis through the final deadline


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Grants to New York nonprofit organizations and government agencies to provide training and education services addressing workplace safety and health hazards, inclusive of assault and discrimination prevention. The purpose of this solicitation is to secure the services of qualifying direct service providers, community-based organizations, occupational health and safety clinics, and nonprofits that can assist the State in the provision of workplace safety education, with a focus on low-skill, low-wage jobs.

Several industries, including but not limited to: agriculture; construction; health care, including home health care; landscaping; hospitality; and dry cleaning, employ a large percentage of low-wage immigrant workers and evidence high incidence rates of occupational health and safety injuries and illnesses.

The following hazards have been identified as particularly serious or common occurrences in these industries:
-Power takeoff drives;
-Chemical exposure and inhalation including cleaning supplies, perchlorethylene (PERC);
-Noise exposure;
-Moving parts;
-Exposure to dusts and fumes;
-Blood pathogens and other body fluid pathogens;
-Repetitive motion;
-Biological hazards;
-Sharp objects including broken glass;
-Hot grease;
-“Sharps” (used in medical procedures and are often disposed of improperly);
-Extreme temperatures;
-Elevated work sites with serious risk of falling; and
-Workplace violence.

This RFA will support meaningful and comprehensive efforts undertaken by community-based organizations, direct service providers, occupational health and safety clinics, and other not-for-profit entities to provide training, education, and assistance in the following general areas for workers, advocates, and businesses:

-Workplace accident, injury, illness, violence, harassment and other physical and psychological workplace health and safety issue prevention measures;

-Occupational safety and health best practices intended to protect and enhance workplace safety; and

-Business compliance with occupational safety and health regulations and best practices in partnership with NYSDOL’s On Site Consultation program.

NYSDOL has made funds available for the provision of education, outreach, and assistance to workers, including exploited and immigrant workers. The activities are to be industry-specific utilizing health and safety best practices that would have a preventive impact on occupational health and safety violations

Allowable Costs:

WHS funding is intended to promote occupational safety and health through outreach, training and education, promotion of available compliance driven business consultation, and other proven preventive programs.

Typical activities which may be funded under the grant program include, but are not limited to, the following:

-Workshops, seminars, or clinics intended to provide workers with information about occupational health and safety standards, for instance Open Clinic nights where workers learn about typical health and safety issues at their worksite, how to identify and control these hazards, their rights under the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA), and the right to complain about workplace conditions free from retaliation or harassment. “Right to Know” workshops, seminars, or clinics cannot be stand-alone trainings. Applicants can include these training topics in larger training offerings but NYSDOL will not fund applications in which this topic is the only topic area;

-General or hazard-specific training on how to identify, evaluate, and control employee exposure to workplace hazards, including but not limited to atmospheric hazards, electrical and machine guarding, slips/trips and falls and safe patient handling techniques;

-Programs that complement or supplement existing NYSDOL On-Site Consultation programs designed to reduce workplace accidents by teaching practices or procedures designed to mitigate inherently dangerous work activities—for example, reducing workplace accidents by implementing lockout/tag-out procedures, safe electrical work practices, or methods of working safely in confined spaces;

-Programs addressing ergonomic and repetitive motion problems, including safe-patient handling, and proper lifting techniques;

-Instruction of employees and businesses on their rights and responsibilities under the New York State Right-to-Know Law and OSHA/Public Employees Safety and Health (PESH) standards on hazard communication, chemical hazards in laboratories, and specific substances such as lead, benzene, and asbestos, etc.;

-Programs which help address unique and unusually difficult job safety and health problems, such as workplace violence, assault, sexual assault, sexual harassment, exposure to biological hazards and other emerging hazards; and/or

-Programs which help increase/encourage business compliance with workplace health and safety regulations, including industrial hygiene initiatives, the New York State Safety and Health Achievement Recognition Program (SHARP) and Workplace Safety and Loss Prevention Incentive Program (NYSDOL’s Industrial Code Rule 60).

Awarded projects may, but are not required to, award certificates of completion to individuals who receive training or education funded by this program.

Other allowable costs include:
-Learning aids that are directly related to the proposed training; and
-Publicity activities and materials that provide information directly related to improving workplace safety and health (Note, all publicity must be pre-approved by NYSDOL’s Communications office).

Target Population:

This RFA seeks to assist employed workers that may be experiencing and/or are at risk of experiencing occupational health and safety hazards. The target population will typically be workers in low-skill, low-wage positions in industries such as: nail salons; farming; childcare; cleaning; home health care; laundry; restaurants; retail; construction; landscaping; car washes; supermarkets; janitorial services; and trucking and waste disposal.

While participants will not be expected to self-disclose as an exploited worker to receive training or services, and specific businesses should not be indicated within the application, applicants must provide a description of the industry as well as the systemic health and safety problem(s) that will be addressed with the grant.

There is no minimum or maximum number of individuals to be served under this WHS RFA.

GrantWatch ID#:

GrantWatch ID#: 176673

Estimated Total Program Funding:


Estimated Size of Grant:

Applications of more than $200,000 will not be considered.

There is no minimum award amount under the WHS program.

Term of Contract:

Contracts may not be extended past March 31, 2018 unless a NYS Budget appropriation is maintained. In the absence of future appropriations, all activities supported by the contract must be completed, and awarded funds must be fully expended by March 31, 2018.

Bidders must include only the training opportunities that can be reasonably accomplished within the contract time period. In the event funding becomes available after March 31, 2018, limited no-cost contract extensions of up to six additional months may be approved at NYSDOL’s discretion. The length of the extension is dependent on the original contract duration; however, under no circumstances may the length of the contract plus the extension exceed a total of twelve months.

Additional Eligibility Criteria:

Applicants may be single entities as well as consortiums of entities, applying through a lead applicant.

Eligible applicants must be not-for-profit or governmental entities, including community-based organizations, direct service providers, occupational health and safety clinics and other not-for-profit and governmental entities which:

-Have two or more paid employees (principals of corporations, board members and owners of businesses such as sole proprietors or partners are not considered to be employees for this criterion) or the equivalent of two (2) full-time employees (year-round, part-time employees are acceptable);

-Are headquartered in NYS or have at least one site located in NYS at the time of application; and

-Are in good standing regarding: Unemployment Insurance; Worker Adjustment and Retraining Notification Act (WARN); Public Work; Labor Standards; Safety and Health; NYS Department of State Division of Corporations; Workers’ Compensation Insurance; and Disability Insurance.

Consultants, trade organizations and other third party entities are not eligible to apply for funds on behalf of other organizations.

Applicants with existing or pending contracts with NYSDOL remain eligible to apply for funding under this WHS RFA as long as the application does not propose training or services to the same individual or entity as the existing or pending NYSDOL contract. In addition, the payments requested cannot duplicate reimbursement from other sources of funding.

WHS will not pay for any of the following items:
-Development of academic curricula for the education of occupational safety and health
professionals or support personnel;
-Activities which support degree programs, safety engineer certificate programs, or extended academic programs designed to provide professional level credentials;
-Scientific research and occupational health screenings;
-Any costs related to actual implementation of compliance measures, model practices, or any
other enhancements (i.e. capital, structural, equipment2, etc.);
-Political activities or devices;
-Newsletters, factsheets, language lines, websites, or other publications which do not solely provide information directly related to improving workplace safety and health. Items related to labor vs. management issues and political disputes are not appropriate material to be covered in grant-funded publications. Items related to court actions may be appropriate if they address the impact of the decision on safety and health in the workplace within New York State. However, the publication of court decisions in jurisdictions whose laws do not apply in New York State would not be appropriate. Likewise, publications or other reporting on an entity’s victory in a specific court action would not be appropriate;
-Wages or stipends paid to workers while in training;
-Refreshments provided during training programs;
-Severance pay;
-Awards of cash, trophies or the like;
-Accrued leave time;
-Purchase and/or rental of cellular telephones and devices;
-Audit services;
-Acquisition, construction, or renovation of buildings or other real estate;
-Supportive services such as child care, transportation, lodging, and meals for the trainees (any supportive services provided may be funded through the local Career Center);
-Interest costs incurred by provider agencies;
-Costs of organized fund raising;
-Sales training;
-Registration fees;
-Payment of fees associated with attendance at seminars, conferences, or meetings of professional organizations; or
-Any other costs deemed inappropriate by NYSDOL and any costs that do not meet the intent of the RFA or programs that are readily available from NYSDOL.

If an applicant is unsure about unallowable trainings, programs, or other charges applicable to this grant funding opportunity they should consider asking specific questions before the Questions Deadline.

Pre-Application Information:

Contracts will be paid on a reimbursable payment basis.

All entities must visit the Grants Gateway website and follow the instructions to complete the registration. The registration form must be signed, notarized and mailed to Gateway Administrators. Plan accordingly to avoid potential delays in applying for upcoming grant opportunities.

Not-for-profit organizations must take the additional step of prequalifying by completing a basic profile and storing organizational documents. Both registration and prequalification must be completed by not-for-profit organizations before the application is submitted. Failure to do so will mean that the application will not be reviewed.

Applicants may submit questions via electronic mail. Questions regarding the RFA will be accepted on an ongoing basis until December 13, 2017. Answers to all questions received by this date will be posted on the NYSDOL website no later than December 15, 2017:

Applications and required attachments will be accepted immediately and on an ongoing basis through the Grants Gateway until 4:00 PM Eastern Standard Time on December 29, 2017.

RFA Timetable
-RFA Release Date: June 28, 2017
-Deadline Date for Questions: Ongoing, no later than December 13, 2017.
-Deadline Date for Responses to Questions: Ongoing, no later than December 15, 2017.
-Application/Proposal Due Date: Ongoing, no later than 4:00 PM Eastern Standard Time on December 29, 2017.
-Date of Notification of Award: Ongoing as received.
-Latest Possible Contract End Date: March 31, 2018

View this opportunity on the Grants Gateway:

Contact Information:

Before starting your grant application, please review the funding source's website listed below for updates/changes/addendums/conferences/LOIs.

Applicants may submit questions via electronic mail to All inquiries should include the following reference in the Subject line: “WHS RFA-#11 Question”.

Applicants should direct any technical questions about Grants Gateway to

Applicants in need of assistance completing this RFA may reach out to Krista Barringer at NYSDOL at

New York State Department of Labor
Division of Worker Protection
Harriman Office
Campus Building 12, Room 440
Albany, New York 12240

Funding or Pin Number:

Bid Number: WHS RFA-#11 / Grant Opportunity ID: DOL01-WHS17-2017

URL for Full Text (RFP):

Geographic Focus:

USA: New York City;   New York