The Forest Service Safety Survey: results from an employee-wide safety attitude survey
The Forest Service, U.S. Department of Agriculture launched a Safety Journey in 2011 aimed at elevating safety consciousness and practice in the Agency. All employees were required to attend an engagement session during the year to introduce them to the Safety Journey. In September, a survey was launched to help Forest Service leadership better understand employee views concerning the Safety Journey, and generally of safety in the Agency. The survey included 49 statements relating to the content of the engagement sessions. Demographic questions were also included, as well as an opportunity to comment. A total of 11,980 completed surveys were received between September 15, 2011, and March 7, 2012. In general, findings showed that most employees were cautiously optimistic about the Safety Journey, but some degree of skepticism was present in every Agency division. Future efforts should give more emphasis to making the Safety Journey more applicable to office worker, Law Enforcement and Investigations, Washington Office, and Research and Development employees. A significant number of employee comments called for more follow-through by Agency leaders, particularly by providing more financial resources; hiring better qualified personnel; assuring adequate safety equipment; and offering more relevant safety training, such as peer-to-peer mentoring and job-specific training.