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The Building Code Division provides education and code enforcement to protect the health, welfare and safety of University of Minnesota students, employees and visitors in newly constructed or remodeled buildings.
An example of enterprise support occurred in 2010 when the Building Code Division transitioned to a new permit structure. This structure required separate trade permits to improve work flow, increase accountability and align with both the state and local municipal building departments. To ensure a successful project, Building Code worked with Capital Planning and Project Management (CPPM) and Facilities Management (FM) to develop a permit application process that would that would meet both regulatory requirements and customer needs. Building Code staff provided training to CPPM and FM Districts, Energy Management, Central Services, Networking and Telecommunications Services, and the Morris, Crookston and Duluth campuses prior to implementation, which allowed for feedback and process improvement before the system went on-line.
The Department of Environmental Health and Safety works with students, staff and faculty members to prevent accidents and illness, assess workplace exposures and protect the environment. DEHS offers training and support to Principal Investigators and research staff in all areas of sponsored project research including biological safety, lab safety, chemical waste, and use of radioactive materials.
DEHS also provides direct research support across the University. BioSafety staff work in conjunction with the Institutional BioSafety Committee to inspect research facilities, approve research practices and procedures, to help ensure compliance with federal, state, and local regulations and relevant University policies. In response to the increasing number of BioSafety level 3 facilities on campus, DEHS BioSafety staff will conduct frequent inspections of these facilities, particularly during the first several months of their operation, and will ensure ongoing oversight of work with organisms at these higher biosafety levels.
University Health and Safety actively partners with University oversight committees. The Building Code Division provided an overview of its services to the Senate Subcommittee on Facilities and Student Services in March 2010. DEHS consults with the Senate Research Committee on administrative policies and procedures related to research. DEHS staff are members of the following advisory committees: Institutional BioSafety Committee; Institutional Animal Care and Use Committee; Occupational Health and Safety Committee; Storm water Linkage Committee; Storm water Task Force; All University Radiation Protection Advisory Committee; Permit Review Subcommittee; Human Use Subcommittee; UMTC Sustainability Committee; System-Wide Sustainability Committee.
University Health and Safety participates actively in the Campus Safety Health and Environmental Management Association and a number of other professional organizations. UHS also provides services to University of Minnesota Medical Center, and more than 100 schools in the state through its Chemical Safety Day Program.