OWENSBORO, KY () by Ronald D. Croatti - A 320,000 square-foot warehousing and distribution center in Owensboro, Kentucky, operated by UniFirst Corporation, has been presented with the Governor's Safety & Health Award at the Kentucky Safety and Health Conference. UniFirst is one of the largest uniform manufacturers and Uniform Rental Service companies in North America.
The UniFirst facility, which acts as a central work apparel and uniform distribution hub for more than 200 UniFirst locations in the US and Canada, was recognized for one million hours of operations without a lost time accident. Less than one percent of the more than 317,000 businesses in Kentucky qualify for the award each year.
"Health and safety have always been top priorities for our company, so we're particularly proud of this award," said Dana Wilson, UniFirst Human Resource Manager, who also pointed out that the facility has been ISO certified since 2003. "Without the dedication of all our employee Team Partners, this accomplishment would not have been possible," she said. "I'd like to congratulate each and every one of them for keeping health and safety a top of mind issue. Their commitment helps build a solid business foundation and enables us to serve our uniform customers in a timely manner."
"We have a huge building with 300 employees on two shifts working with all types of moving machinery," Wilson said. "Our employees are working with conveyor belts, they're running embroidery, engraving and silk-screening equipment; and packing, weighing and shipping an average of one million pieces of work apparel every month. There are always opportunities for mishaps."
To combat potential threats for worker health and safety, Wilson oversees more than 50 diverse training tools and programs which run on a year-round basis. There's an "Ergonomics Team" that studies the layouts of work stations, a very popular worker stretching session, and even a post card mailing initiative that includes mailing safety tips to employees at their homes.
In addition to contributing to happier and healthier employees, the health and safety practices also translate into solid business benefits for UniFirst and its customers, Wilson said. "No work stoppages mean we can fulfill and ship our orders on time and as a result we have lots of satisfied customers." To Wilson, safety is a passion—to the 1.5 million workers who rely on UniFirst's uniforms every day it means reliable deliveries of the uniforms and work apparel they depend on to do their jobs and to represent their companies professionally to the public.
UniFirst (NYSE: UNF), a North American leader in the supply and servicing of uniforms, workwear, and protective clothing, outfits more than 1.5 million workers each business day. The company's most popular brands include UniWeave®, SofTwill®, UniWear®, and Armorex FR®. UniFirst also offers Facility Service Programs including floor mats, mops, and restroom products. For more information, contact UniFirst at 800-455-7654 or visit www.unifirst.com.