/ Worksite Wellness / Certified for Safety: A New Standard of Wellness

Certified for Safety: A New Standard of Wellness

Michael Shaw

Offices abound with certificates of safety, notifying workers of a building’s compliance with various codes involving zoning, wiring, sprinklers, storage, loading, and maintenance. These certificates are proof of compliance, but they do not prove workers are safe from themselves.

That is, a building may be safe—its elevators may run smoothly and its fire alarms may ring soundly—but the bodies inside may not include a first responder: There may not be a worker who is CPR-certified; who is able to save a life when the fastest response to a crisis is to have the training of a first responder, when other first responders are the second ones to arrive on the scene.

If an office is to be safe, it must have occupants who can perform life-saving procedures. If wellness is to be the priority it should be, a company must invest in the health of its employees. It must teach its workers how to resuscitate a fallen colleague; it must train its workers how to not only restore spontaneous blood circulation but how to revive the lifeblood of a company’s heart and soul.

Indeed, no business can survive if it loses its most essential workers. According to Mackenzie Thompson of National Health Care Provider Solutions, “CPR is a skill every employee should know how to administer, and every employer should support. CPR certification is an invaluable form of documentation, which furthers peace of mind and fortifies the mind of each worker who can save a life. It builds self-confidence and boosts safety.”

I agree with that comment, not because I want it to be true, but because I know it is true.

When you empower people to take control of their health, when you prize safety and promote wellness, when you apprise workers of how they can save a life—when you do some or all of these things, you inspire others to do likewise.

A multiplier effect ensues in which every company wants what another business has: employees who are CPR-certified.

This is not an unreasonable goal.

What is, however, unreasonable is passivity: watching someone in need of assistance—seeing the life leave a person’s body—because you do not know how to save that man’s life; because you do not have the know-how to stop that woman from dying.

Wellness begins with CPR, a three-letter symbol of medical emergency and moral urgency.

Wellness needs its own certificate

That certificate should decorate every wall and adorn every desk.

It should be a source of pride and a proclamation of strength. It should denote what workers can do and connote a can-do attitude throughout an office or workplace. It should be an emblem of what employees volunteer to learn, in addition to being an example worth emulating among all occupants in the same building.

This certification is a sign of safety, but it is also a statement of principles—that every life is sacred and every person is a potential savior.

This certification is a must-have commodity.

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